The board of French utility Suez has said it continues to believe that a merger with Gaz de France is the best possible strategic option for the company, its shareholders, its staff and clients. The board has told chief executive, Gerard Mestrallet to pursue necessary talks and study possible actions to achieve that.
A recent Paris court ruling delayed completion of the merger until July, after presidential elections which could be won by the socialists who oppose it. Together Suez and Gaz de France would supply energy to 20.2 twenty million customers in Europe, drinking water to 80 million and sewage services to 65 million. Their combined turnover last year would have been 63.9 billion euros. One report said the two companies are looking at an interim solution involving a share swap and a phased takeover along with the launch of joint projects. Suez shares have risen to 37.80 euros.