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It looks like the final major hurdle in Uber’s planned acquisition of regional rival Careem in Egypt is now finally over. The country’s regulators approved the US-based ride-hailing giant’s proposal on the condition that it would meet a certain level of commitment to comply with antitrust laws and regulations.

The news about Careem’s acquisition was first announced in March 2019 following nine months of extensive negotiations between the two countries. The deal is expected to come off as a big boost for Uber considering that it had faced a series of overseas disinvestments in the recent past. 

If all goes as per plan, both companies will wrap up the deal in January 2020. Although, there could be some delays given that the deal has to be approved by the regional governments in Egypt’s various territories. 

Even though Careem will turn into a wholly-owned Uber subsidiary, it will continue serving as an independent brand under independent management.

Reacting to this new development, a spokesperson representing Uber commented: We welcome the decision by the Egyptian Competition Authority (ECA) to approve Uber’s pending acquisition of Careem. […] Uber and Careem joining forces will deliver exceptional outcomes for riders, drivers, and cities across Egypt.”

Meanwhile, the ECA has asked Uber to ensure that it will abandon all exclusivity provisions with partners and intermediaries. In addition, Uber will also have to make sure on its part that the entry barrier to the market is not very steep. 

Under these conditions, Uber will form an independent monitoring trustee approved by the ECA to oversee the adherence to the aforementioned commitments.