United and Continental Get EC Permission to Merge

United Airlines and Continental Airlines today received unconditional clearance from the European Commission on the airlines’ proposed merger. The Commission noted its investigation found the proposed transaction would not raise any specific concerns in Europe or the trans-Atlantic market.

“Approval from the European Commission is another important step toward completing our merger with United,” said Jeff Smisek, Continental’s chairman, president and CEO.

Glenn Tilton, UAL Corporation chairman, president and CEO said that the European Union is “a significant market for our combined new company, and we continue to work cooperatively with the U.S. Department of Justice toward an expeditious completion of our merger.”

The companies announced their plans for an all-stock merger of equals in May and expect the transaction to close in the fourth quarter of 2010.

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