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COMPETITION authorities have approved a request by merging parties Zimco Group and Atlantis Metals to leave SA and retrench staff.The Competition Tribunal acceded on Thursday to their request to lift "certain conditions" imposed by the Competition Commission when it approved their merger in 2014.The tribunal removed restrictions on relocating the Atlantis seamless rolled anode plant from Brakpan, Gauteng, and said retrenchments were not merger-specific.This comes after Zimco told the tribunal that Atlantis — which makes lead anodes used in industrial electroplating — was "seriously affected" by Glencore’s closure of mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia."With the drop in prices of copper and (other) minerals, there is lessened demand for our products," Zimco group MD Wouter Verwey said on Thursday."The market is there, but we can’t be competitive because we are producing in SA."The Atlantis plant could be moved to the world’s largest copper producer, Chile — the bigge...

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