EC relaunches talks with PKN Orlen fuel over merger with peer Lotos

Orlen expects a formal decision from the EC by end-June, CEO Daniel Obajtek said in the statement. Piotr Nowak/PAP

Poland's largest fuel concern PKN Orlen and the European Commission have relaunched negotiations concerning the planned takeover of the rival Lotos company, PKN Orlen said in a press release.

In July, 2019, Orlen filed for EC approval of the planned merger. Initially, the EC had until January 22, 2020, to issue its decision on the takeover but last September it decided to apply a "stop the clock" procedure thanks to which Orlen gained more time to update Lotos merger documentation.

The EC "relaunched the formal negotiations procedure" by halting the 'stop the clock' procedure, Orlen's Monday statement read.

Orlen expects a formal decision from the EC by end-June, CEO Daniel Obajtek said in the statement.

On Friday the EC said on its website that the deadline for the review of Lotos acquisition by PKN Orlen has been extended to June 30, 2020.

The takeover of the Lotos Group by Orlen was initiated in February 2018. Orlen filed a preliminary motion for EU approval for the Lotos merger in November 2018.

Orlen expects the potential merger with Lotos to boost its investment potential, asset development and foreign expansion.

The state-owned fuel conglomerate PKN Orlen is the largest entity in the refining and petrochemical industry in Poland, strategic for the country's energy security and one of the largest in this sector in Europe.