Styrene joint venture conditionally approved by Commission

The European Commission (the Commission) has conditionally approved a joint venture between BASF and INEOS, to combine their existing acrylonitrile–butadiene–styrene (ABS), monomer and polystyrene businesses.  

The Commission was satisfied that both credible and significant competitors remained in relation to most of the affected products, but had concerns in relation to the market for ABS (a product which is used in a variety of applications and where the market was already highly concentrated). To address the Commission’s concerns and avoid a Phase II investigation, the parties offered to divest part of INEOS’ ABS business, reducing the overlap in that market and the market strength of the joint venture. The Commission has approved the transaction, conditional upon the completion of this divestment.