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Justice Dept OKs CenturyLink-Level 3 Merger Deal

The Justice Department has agreed to approve the pending $34 billion acquisition of Level 3 Communications (NYSE: LVLT) by CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), subject to court approval of certain conditions in a consent decree.

CenturyLink said Monday the combined firm needs to divest 24 dark fiber strands that link 30 city-pairs across the U.S. via an indefeasible right of use as well as Level 3 network assets in three metro areas under the consent decree.

Those metro areas include Tuczon, Arizona; Boise, Idaho; and Albuquerque, New Mexico.

CenturyLink said it does not expect the divestitures to have an impact on the combined company’s operating cash flows and pro-forma revenue.

“We anticipate court approval of our agreed resolution with the Department of Justice as early as this week,” said John Jones, senior vice president for public policy and government relations at CenturyLink.

“We are focused on meeting our targeted transaction closing timeframe of mid-to-late October,” Jones added.

The transaction originally announced in October 2016 has received clearances from 24 states and territories and is still awaiting approval from the California Public Utilities Commission and the Federal Communications Commission.

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