May 15, 2013 / 9:24 PM / 6 years ago

Canadian regulator review of Agrium purchase within timeframe

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Canadian Competition Bureau’s review of Agrium’s proposed purchase of Viterra assets is within its normal timeframe, the fertilizer company said, adding that it remains unclear what its ruling will be.

“The Bureau’s review is ongoing, and is proceeding in accordance with the statutory timelines set out in the Competition Act,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday. “At this stage, it is premature to assess the likely outcome of the bureau’s review.”

Agrium agreed more than a year ago to pay C$175 million ($172 million) plus C$400 million in working capital, net of operating cash flow from the supply stores from March 31, 2012 until the deal closes.

The sale, triggered by Glencore Xstrata PLC’s (GLEN.L) takeover of grain handler Viterra last year, has raised concerns among some farmers, because Agrium already owns some stores and is also a major producer of nitrogen and potash fertilizer.

Spokesman Richard Downey said the company is co-operating with the bureau in its review.

The regulator has asked the company for factual information as its review continues, Downey said.

Reporting by Rod Nickel in New York; Editing by Marguerita Choy

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