EU gives Orange the green light for Belgian deal

·1 min read

BRUSSELS, March 20 (Reuters) - The European Commission on Monday said it had cleared the proposed acquisition by French telecom company Orange of a majority stake in Belgian peer VOO SA.

The approval follows an agreement struck by Orange in January to provide Liberty Global's Telenet wholesale access to VOO's network in Wallonia and in Brussels, making it a national player and rival and thereby addressing the EU's competition concerns.

The EU competition enforcer had previously said it was concerned the deal would reduce the number of operators from three to two in areas covered by VOO's own fixed networks, and affect third-party mobile networks. (Reporting by Bart Meijer, Editing by Louise Heavens)