FILE PHOTO: Chairman Ajit Pai speaks at the Federal Communications Commission in Washington, U.S., December 14, 2017. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai on Friday sought approval from his colleagues for an order to approve Nexstar Media Group Inc’s (NXST.O) acquisition of Tribune Media Co (TRCO.N) in a $6.4 billion tie-up, a spokeswoman for the agency said.

Last month, the U.S. Justice Department approved the deal, saying the companies must divest television stations in 13 markets to resolve antitrust concerns. Pai’s order needs the consent of a majority of the five-member FCC.

Nexstar said in December it had agreed to buy Chicago-based Tribune for $4.1 billion in a deal valued at $6.4 billion including debt that would make it the largest regional U.S. television station operator. Tribune said earlier this month it looks forward to receiving “regulatory approval” for the deal soon.

Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Grant McCool

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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