Regulators clear way for merger of Hapag-Lloyd and Vapores
FRANKFURT Dec 2 (Reuters) - Germany's Hapag-Lloyd said on Tuesday it had received the last outstanding regulatory approvals for its planned merger with Chilean shipper Compania SudAmericana de Vapores, clearing the way for the two companies to be formally combined.
The merger, which will create the world's No. 4 container-shipping company, is important for the shipping industry which hopes that consolidation will ease the pressure on freight rates, helping it to overcome the worst slump on record.
Hapag-Lloyd said it would execute a planned capital increase worth 370 million euros ($459 million) by Dec. 31, which will make Vapores its biggest shareholders with a 34 percent stake.
The main steps to integrate the two companies should be completed by the end of the second quarter 2015, it said.
($1 = 0.8059 euros) (Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Ludwig Burger)
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