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EU gives green light to Barclays' bid for ABN Amro

The European Union (EU) gave the green light on Monday to the proposed acquisition by British banking giant Barclays of its Dutch peer ABN Amro.

The European Commission, the EU's executive body, said in a statement that the takeover bid would not significantly impede effective competition in the EU or any substantial part of the bloc. London-based Barclays, a global financial service provider, is active in retail and commercial banking, credit cards, investment banking, wealth management and investment management services.

It operates in more than 60 countries and, within the EU, is predominantly active in Britain, where it is the third-largest bank. ABN Amro, an international banking group, is active worldwide in personal banking, private banking, business and commercial clients and corporate and institutional clients. In the EU, ABN Amro is predominantly active in the Netherlands.

The Commission said that even if the two banks secure a merger deal, the combined entity would still face sufficient competition from a number of operators. The decision paves the way for Barclays' takeover bid for ABN Amro, which was officially launched Monday and worth more than $90 billion. (