The new deadline for the European Commission (EC) to take a decision on US$130bn merger of Dow Chemical and DuPont is 28 February, a spokesperson said on 9 November.

The EC had halted its probe into whether the merger would reduce competition in crop protection, seeds and certain chemicals for a second time on 13 October after the companies failed to provide crucial data.

“We have received the missing information and the clock has been re-started,” an EC spokesperson said in an e-mail to Reuters.

The EU’s probe was announced on 11 August (see Biotech News, OFI September/October 2016) but was halted in September due to missing information.

The merger to create DowDuPont Inc was first announced on 11 December and would eventually see the new entity split into three by the end of 2018, creating separate companies focused on agriculture, specialty products and materials science.

Both companies supply GM seeds and crop protection products to the oils and fats industry.

Dow Chemical spokeswoman Rachelle Schikorra said the companies were working constructively with the Commission and other regulatory authorities and still expected to close the deal in the first quarter of 2017.