India’s National Company Law Tribunal approved a proposed merger of Indus Towers with Bharti Infratel, a move which will create one of the largest tower companies outside of China.

The deal now needs the approval of the Department of Telecommunications, which is expected to come by end of June, The Economic Times wrote.

In April 2018 Bharti Airtel agreed to combine its tower business Bharti Infratel with Indus Towers. The new company, which will operate under the latter’s name, will have 163,000 towers across India and an estimated value of $12 billion to $13 billion. It will continue to be listed on the Indian stock exchanges.

Bharti Airtel and Vodafone announced on 21 May Indus Towers CEO Bimal Dayal would lead the merged company, while Indus Towers’ CFO Hemant Ruia would keep the same position in the new entity.

The operators, which each hold a 42 per cent stake in Indus Tower, opened talks to reduce their investments in the company in early May.