Canada’s Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (TSX, NYSE:POT), the world’s largest producer of the fertilizer by capacity, may sell its stake in Chilean lithium miner SQM to secure approval for its friendly merger with smaller rival Agrium (TSX, NYSE:AGU).
PotashCorp, which holds 32% percent of SQM and has three of eight board seats, said earlier this week the Canadian competition bureau had okayed the merger as it concluded the transaction would not lead to a substantial lessening or prevention of local competition for products sold by both companies, including potash fertilizer, dry or liquid phosphate fertilizer and nitric acid.
The parties, however, warned the link-up is expected to close several months later than previously anticipated due in part to authorities in China and India who want the divestment of certain minority interests owned by PotashCorp.
According to local paper Diario Financiero (in Spanish), one of the three minority holdings the Canadian firm may offload is SQM, one of the world’s biggest lithium producers.
The rumours come as the Chilean firm has attracted interest from Chinese investors, including private equity firm GSR Capital, which is said to be mulling the acquisition of a 20% stake in SQM, worth just under $1.9 billion at current market values.
For the rest of this article: http://www.mining.com/potashcorp-mulls-selling-stake-chilean-lithium-producer-sqm-report/