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Fox hits back at government over Sky deal concerns

21st Century Fox has released a letter defending its planned takeover of Sky following the culture secretary’s comment she was “minded” to intervene in the deal.

Fox has submitted a bid of £11.7 billion to take over Sky.

It says Karen Bradley has based her view on “seriously flawed” evidence.

But in the letter to the Department of Media, Culture and Sport, Fox says it welcomes a “thorough” review and will work with regulators.

“21st Century Fox is confident that the transaction will be approved based on an objective assessment of the facts,” said Jeffrey Palker, executive vice president at the firm.

“These flaws include the misattribution of consumption of news on commercial radio to Sky… the erroneous characterisation of News Corp as the ‘largest newspaper provider’ and inaccurate claims that rising online readership has ‘eclipsed’ the dramatic decline in circulation of News Corp titles.”

Palker continued, “We believe this transaction is in the interest of the UK, its creative economy and its consumers. For the past 30 years, Fox and Sky have been broadcasters of good standing in the UK, a responsibility we take seriously. The UK has a thriving creative and media sector that is becoming increasingly more plural and we are confident that this transaction would not result in there being insufficient plurality in the UK.”