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Macquarie, Glencore Xstrata join to bid for Shell Australian assets - paper

SYDNEY, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Macquarie Group and Glencore Xstrata have joined forces to bid for Royal Dutch Shell's Australian refining and retail business, the Australian Financial Review (AFR) reported on Wednesday.

The paper said the heavyweight pairing is up against a consortium comprising oil trader Vitol and the Abu Dhabi Investment Council for assets that include a refinery, import terminals and a network of 900 branded service stations.

A third grouping of private equity firm TPG, the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (OTPP) and the Kuwait Investment Authority has pulled out of the running, the paper reported, without citing sources.

The AFR described the process as being in the final stages.