UK-based sugar and ingredients group Tate & Lyle has received European Commission clearance to sell some of its European starch operations to Syral SAS, part of French sugar manufacturer Tereos SA, for GBP209m (US$419m).

The European Commission said the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in Europe. Its examination had focused particularly on the market for liquid sweeteners but the EC concluded that because Syral's activities in this area were limited at present, in comparison with fairly strong competition, this would not create competition issues.

The starch facilities concerned are in the UK, Belgium, France, Spain and Italy. Tate & Lyle is to retain its remaining starch operations in the Netherlands, Morocco, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey.

The acquisition will boost Syral's consolidated turnover to more than EUR900m (US$1.2bn).