The purpose of the process has been to verify the information exchanged between the companies prior to signing the merger agreement announced 18 December 2006.
Following considerations of positive and negative elements in both companies, Hydro and Statoil have agreed on the following change to the financial terms of the merger: Hydro will transfer bonds to the new company as previously agreed but the corresponding cash amount will be NOK 1 billion less, thus net interest-bearing debt transferred to the new company will be NOK 1 billion as opposed to the zero debt reported when the merger was announced.
Reference is made to a separate news release from Hydro regarding asset write downs in the Gulf of Mexico, as well as a news release from Statoil regarding an increase in net interest bearing debt.
Apart from the above, all terms and conditions of the merger agreement remain unchanged and are not conditional on any further value verification.
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