France opposes Canadian Couche-Tard's Carrefour bid citing food security


PARIS, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- French Minister for the Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire said on Friday he opposed a proposed takeover by Canadian convenience store group Alimentation Couche-Tard of French grocery giant Carrefour, citing food security as a strategic interest.

"My answer is extremely clear: we are not in favor of the deal. The 'no' is polite but it's a clear and final 'no'," he told French cable channel BFM TV.

"It is my role to defend the strategic interests of the country," he said. "Food security is strategic for our country so that's why we don't sell a big French retailer."

Le Maire described Carrefour as France's largest private employer with more than 100,000 workers, which is responsible for nearly 20 percent of food distribution in the country.

Under French legislation on foreign investments, which includes strict takeover rules to protect companies deemed strategic, the government can refuse to authorize an investment if the conditions imposed are not respected.

The decree, signed in July 2020, covers the fields of national defense, artificial intelligence, microchips, space technology and the retail sector.

"We have the legal instrument at our disposal, I would rather not have to use it," Le Maire said.

Earlier this week, Alimentation Couche-Tard submitted a non-binding offer of 20 euros (24.24 U.S. dollars) per share for Carrefour, valuing the French retailer at 16.2 billion euros. (1 euro = 1.21 U.S. dollar)

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 18
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
   

Did you find this article insightful?

Yes
No

Next In World

Exclusive: EU preparing sanctions on Myanmar military businesses, documents show
Syria's Assad and his wife test positive for COVID-19
Pandemic tames Airbnb in Europe's tourist hotspots - for now
Special Report: How Trump administration left indelible mark on U.S. immigration courts
In Japan, vending machines help ease access to COVID-19 tests
Thailand jails more protest leaders until trial for royal insults
Harry and Meghan interview sparks shock, anger and memes on Twitter
Turkish olive farmer battles to save her land from coal mine
Report: WhatsApp desktop calls to remain connected if phone gets disconnected
Apple’s iCloud locked user out of her own account for six months due to a surname code bug

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers