FRANKFURT (Reuters) - EU regulators will allow a bid by Hongkong’s Hutchison 3G to buy France Telecom’s FTE.PA Orange Austria if the new combined group permits other Austrian operators to access its network, an Austrian daily said on Saturday, citing sources.
The online edition of Wirtschaftsblatt said the EU had proposed to the new group, which operates under the ‘3’ brand in Austria, that it allow other rivals to operate as so-called Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO).
It said the EU had asked various interested parties for comment on its proposals, which included the interconnection fees.
A spokeswoman for Hutchison 3G Austria and a spokesman for the European Commission declined comment.
Hutchison, a unit of Hutchison Whampoa 0013.HK, which is controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, unveiled its 1.3 billion euro takeover plan in February.
The European Commission, which has been examining the proposed acquisition since May, opened an in-depth investigation last month and will make its decision by November 6.
Reporting By Marilyn Gerlach; Additional Reporting by Georgina Prodhan in Vienna and Phil Blenkinsop from Brussels; Editing by William Hardy and Kevin Liffey