The Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of the Romanian oil refiner and distributor of refined petroleum products, Rompetrol, by KazMunaiGaz PKOP Investment NV, a Dutch subsidiary of JSC TH KazMunaiGaz (KMG), a company based in Kazakhstan. The Commission's investigation found that the proposed transaction would not impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.

KMG produces crude oil and natural gas in Kazakhstan, Russia and Azerbaijan. It has a single refinery in Kazakhstan and sells refined petroleum products mainly in Kazakhstan, Russia and China. It sells no refined products in the EU. It is also active in the transport of crude oil and natural gas by pipeline and ships.

Rompetrol is active in refining and the sale of refined products at wholesale and retail levels in South Eastern Europe, France and Spain.

The parties' activities in Europe are complementary. KMG sells no crude oil or refined petroleum products in the EU and Rompetrol sells refined products but has no production of crude oil or natural gas.

The Commission's investigation showed that the proposed operation would not give rise to vertical competition problems, as KMG's share of the upstream market for the production of crude oil is low. Moreover, on the downstream markets, Rompetrol has low market shares, except in the Romanian markets, for the non-retail sale of diesel and LPG. On these markets it faces competition from substantial alternative suppliers, including Petrom, Lukoil and Rafo. [19 November 2007]