The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have approved a controversial takeover of EE, the UK’s largest mobile network, by telecoms giant BT.

The deal, valued at around £12.5 billion, has been under consideration by the CMA for six months, after objections were raised by other operators over the reduction of competition in the British market. The takeover was given final clearance on Friday, when the CMA declared that it was unlikely to harm competition since BT was “smaller in mobile” and EE a “minor player” in broadband.

John Wotton of the CMA said: “The evidence does not show that this merger is likely to cause significant harm to competition or the interests of consumers.”

The deal is aiming to be closed on January 29th, creating a giant telecoms firm that will serve over 35 million customers.

BT chief executive Gavin Patterson said: “The combined BT and EE will be a digital champion for the UK, providing high levels of investment and driving innovation in a highly competitive market.”

BT (LON:BT) shares remain more or less the same, trading up 0.07 percent at 467.32.

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