UPDATE 5-ChemChina, Sinochem in talks on possible $100 bln merger -sources
* Merger would create chemicals giant with $100 bln in annual revs
* Talks come as ChemChina seeks approval for $43 bln Syngenta bid
* Deal proposed by China govt seeking national industry champions (Add background)
By Chen Aizhu
BEIJING, Oct 14 (Reuters) - Chinese state-owned chemical companies Sinochem Group and ChemChina are in discussions about a possible merger to create a chemicals, fertiliser and oil giant with almost $100 billion in annual revenue, three sources familiar with the matter said.
The deal has been proposed by China's central government as part of its efforts to slash the number of state-owned companies and create larger, more competitive global industry players, said the sources.
The sources asked not to be identified because they were not authorised to speak publicly about the matter.
Top management of the two firms held a meeting earlier this week to discuss a potential merger, said one source directly briefed on the matter.
"The government has given the mandate to let Sinochem lead in this potential merger with ChemChina," said the source. Continued...