Santos (ASX:STO) share price slips as Oil Search merger delayed again

Santos’ planned merger has been delayed for the second time.

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A miner in visibility gear and hard hat looks seriously at an iPad device in a field where oil mining equipment is visible in the background.

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The Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) share price is in the red this afternoon. Meanwhile, Santos’ planned merger with Oil Search Ltd (ASX: OSH) is facing another delay.

At the time of writing, the Santos share price is $6.905, 0.65% lower than its previous close.

For context, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) has gained 0.07% today, while the All Ordinaries Index (ASX: XAO) is down 0.02%.

Let’s take a look at the latest news of the creation of a regional oil giant.

New merger delays

The Santos share price is sliding today amid Oil Search’s Papua New Guinean court date being pushed to tomorrow.

Oil Search was initially set to face court in late October. On the final session of last month, it was announced the appearance had been pushed back until today.

Now today is here, the first court date has been delayed until tomorrow at the request of the Papua New Guinea National Court.

According to reporting by the Australian Financial Review, full documentation for the merger was meant to be released to the ASX today.

Prior to the delays, the companies expected their merger would be effective on 2 December.

However, that schedule will likely be scrapped. Oil Search stated it will update the market when a new timetable has been approved by the court.

Upon completion of the merger, the resulting entity will have a $21 billion valuation. The all-scrip deal will see Oil Search holding around 38.5% of the new company and Santos owning approximately 61.5%.

In addition to approval from Papua New Guinea courts, the deal is subject to regulatory and shareholder approval.

Santos share price snapshot

Since the proposed merger between Santos and Oil Search was announced, the Santos share price has gained around 14%.

It is also currently 7% higher than it was at the start of 2021.

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Motley Fool contributor Brooke Cooper has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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