The proposed merger between Singapore Exchange (SGX) and the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) hit a major obstacle today when Australia’s Treasurer Wayne Swan confirmed he was minded to reject the deal as against Australia’s national interest.
‘FIRB [Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board] informed SGX that I had serious concerns about the proposal and that, subject to further consideration, I intended to accept the unanimous FIRB advice that the takeover would not be in the national interest,’ says Swan in a statement.
‘It’s important to note I have not made a final decision, and it would not be appropriate for me to make further public comments on an application that is still under consideration.’
Swan’s comments follow an announcement on SGX’s website, which reveal the Asian bourse was told by FIRB that Swan was not in favour of the deal.
‘We will continue to pursue organic as well as other strategic growth opportunities, including further dialogue with ASX on other forms of cooperation,’ says SGX in the announcement.