The European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, has given a greenlight to AT&T’s $85 billion takeover of Time Warner, which was unveiled last year.

The EC said in a statement: “The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would not raise competition concerns, because there are no overlaps between the parties’ activities in the [European Economic Area].”

Bob Quinn, senior executive vice-president, AT&T external and legislative affairs, responded: “This is an important approval from a highly respected authority. The global clearance process is on track, and we look forward to creating a company that will lead the next wave of innovation in the media and telecommunications industries.”

With the European barrier cleared, the next obstacle for the deal is approval from the Department of Justice in the U.S. Time Warner shareholders approved the merger with AT&T in February. The companies hope to close the transaction by the end of this year.