Merger talks continue for Swiss-based Syngenta with China’s State-owned ChemChina and U.S. based Monsanto. Interim CEO Michel Demare told Reuters “we are at a stage where we are looking at different combinations,” adding that becoming a Chinese company is just one of several options on the table. He says “everybody has spoken to each other” as industry companies are trudging through lower sales on lower farm income. ChemChina is seeking a loan package by Western banks to fund a possible Syngenta takeover that could later be refinanced by Chinese banks. A takeover of Syngenta by ChemChina would underpin an effort by the Chinese government to boost farming productivity, according to Reuters, as it seeks to cut reliance on food imports amid limited farmland, a growing population, and higher meat consumption. Monsanto says recent attempts to restart talks with Syngenta have been difficult.
Demare meanwhile told a Swiss newspaper last month that Syngenta was in talks with Monsanto, ChemChina and other rivals because “going it alone is hardly possible,” given what shareholders were expecting.