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Polish Briefing 10 September, 2018 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Polish Briefing: BP concerned about the Orlen-Lotos merger

What goes on in Poland on the 10th of September.

BP is concerned about the merger of Orlen and Lotos

The BP Group issued a statement where it pointed out that the planned merger of PKN Orlen and Grupa Lotos would limit competition on the Polish market – we read on the PB website.

The planned merger of the two largest oil companies in Poland, PKN Orlen and Grupa Lotos, may limit competition in this country – believes the British oil company BP, which has 537 gas stations in Poland.

PKN Orlen announced in February this year that it intends to acquire 53 percent of shares in the Lotos Group. At that time, a letter of intent was signed, in which PKN Orlen and the State Treasury started the talks aimed at conducting a transaction understood as the acquisition by PKN Orlen, directly or indirectly, of a minimum of 53 percent of shares in the share capital of the Lotos Group.

The BP Group dealing with oil production and trade, petroleum products and gas has not filed any formal complaint with the Polish or EU authorities, but will consider such options in the future. This information was forwarded by the company’s spokeswoman.

– If there was a merger, 95 percent of the market (supply and infrastructure) in this country would be controlled by these two companies – we read in a BP statement. – We believe that a competitive market is in the best interest of Polish consumers and that the merger could limit it, unless a competitive cost of supply and access to infrastructure is guaranteed – it was stated in the statement.

PKN Orlen plans to ask for permission from the European Commission this year for the planned transaction. In the first half of 2018, PKN Orlen had 1,777 petrol stations in Poland, BP 537 stations and Lotos 484, according to POPiHN, a Polish organization conducting research on the local fuel market.

– We are in dialogue with the European Commission, and according to our analysis, the transaction will not threaten competition – said the PKN Orlen spokeswoman Joanna Zakrzewska.