Paris (AFP)

The takeover of Suez by Veolia, if it is carried out, will not result in an increase in the price of water paid by consumers in France, assured Thursday the CEO of Veolia, Antoine Frérot.

"I'm positive about it," he said, responding on Europe 1 to a question on the impact of the possible Suez takeover on water prices.

“My partner Meridiam, for the Eau France activity that he will resume, not only undertakes to keep all the jobs but he also undertakes that the French do not pay more for their water. even commits to creating innovations to improve the quality of service, ”he said.

Veolia, the world leader in water and waste treatment, wants to buy out its historic competitor Suez, starting with the acquisition of most of the shares (29.9%) held by Engie.

In order to avoid the obstacle of anti-trust rules, the group has already found a buyer for the Eau France activity of Suez, in the person of Meridiam, a French fund specializing in infrastructure.

Engie has one month to respond to the takeover offer, but in the meantime Suez management has expressed strong opposition.

On Wednesday, in a message to employees, the Managing Director of Suez, Bertrand Camus, judged "particularly hostile" this takeover attempt, which according to him "presents major risks and strong uncertainties in particular on our teams, our jobs, the future of our Water activities in France, and for the ecological emergency "for lack of" healthy competition ".

Thursday, Mr. Frérot once again renewed his invitation to come and discuss.

"First of all, I greet him, and I reiterate my invitation to discuss this magnificent project, because we can do it together and we have to do it together," he said.

© 2020 AFP