The European Commission announced today that it has been informed by German authorities of merger talks between BayernLB and WestLB, two of Germany’s largest landesbanken. The Commission stated that it is currently investigating the two banks, examining the large amount of state aid received by them in the wake of the financial crisis and the restructuring plan each has put in place to restore its long-term viability. Should the banks decide to merge, the Commission would need to determine what impact a merger would have on those restructuring plans. Joaquin Almunia, the Commission’s Vice President responsible for Competition Policy, noted that “the Commission would need to assess whether the merged entity would be viable in the long-term and whether the measures to ensure burden sharing and to limit competition distortions are adequate.”