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Pfizer admits defeat on AstraZeneca bid

US pharmaceuticals giant Pfizer has called off its multi-billion pound bid to take over British-Swedish firm AstraZeneca. The decision came after AstraZeneca's board declined an offer worth almost £70bn.

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Miliband: Govt 'cheerleading' AstraZeneca takeover bid

Labour leader Ed Miliband has expressed his "concerns" about US drugs company Pfizer's takeover bid for British firm AstraZeneca and has accused the Government of "cheerleading" the deal.

Labour leader Ed Miliband. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

In a letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Miliband wrote: "In this particular bid the stakes could not be much higher. Pfizer’s bid for AstraZeneca affects one of the UK’s most significant investors in R&D, a major contributor to our science base, and 6,700 high quality jobs in the UK.

"Despite those high stakes, the impression created in recent days has been of a Government cheerleading for this deal on the basis of a short letter with inadequate assurances."

"We need a more substantive assessment of whether this takeover is in the national economic interest before the UK government allows itself to be seen to be supporting it," he added.

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