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Who's buying what and where

Prey becomes predator

Asia While CNOOC and Minmetals have failed with their attempts to buy global assets, PetroChina has been more successful. In August, the biggest of China's oil and gas trio bought Canada's PetroKazakhstan for $4.18 billion. The company then raised over $2.7 billion in the equity markets, fuelling speculation that it will make more overseas acquisitions.

Indian companies are also becoming more aggressive. In February Tata Motors, India's biggest automobile manufacturing company, bought a 21% stake in Spain's Hispano Carrocera, with an option to buy 100% holding. The deal gives Tata Motors access to the Spanish company's design and technological capabilities.

Reliance Industries has also been active. In June it bought Trevira, a leading producer of branded polyester fibres in Europe. The deal will "help both Trevira and Reliance to serve our customers with superior polyester products and even better supply chain services," says Subodh Sapra, president of the polyester sector at the Indian firm.

Elsewhere bankers say it's only a matter of time before Korean firms join the acquisition wave.

Central and eastern Europe Outside Russia, few companies in central and eastern Europe have sought assets in Western Europe or the US.

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