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BREAKING NEWS

EU to veto Siemens, Alstom rail merger - sources

EU to veto Siemens, Alstom rail merger - sources
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Lukas Barth(Reuters)
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By Foo Yun Chee

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Siemens and Alstom's plan to create a Franco-German rail champion faces a veto from EU antitrust regulators after the companies' concessions fell short, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The deal would create the world's second largest rail company with combined revenues of around 15 billion euros (£13 billion), roughly half the size of China's state-owned CRRC Corp Ltd <601766.SS> but twice the size of Canada's Bombardier .

Germany and France back the deal, saying it would help secure the competitiveness of the European rail industry. However, European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager has said Europe cannot build industrial champions by undermining competition.

German conglomerate Siemens has already offered to license parts of its high-speed train business and sell parts of its signalling operations after the European Commission voiced concerns.

Siemens had initially offered to share its high-speed train technology, which allows trains to travel faster than 250 km per hour, for five years with third parties. The EU competition enforcer, however, wanted a longer duration, a demand which the company rejected.

There were also competition concerns regarding the companies' market power in rolling stock and signalling. The Commission and Siemens declined to comment.

The global rail market is dominated by China's CRRC, as this graphic shows: http://tmsnrt.rs/2y9zWfe

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee, additional reporting by Caroline Copley in Frankfurt; editing by Louise Heavens)

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