The European Commission has cleared Oracle's proposed US$5.85 billion takeover of business applications vendor Siebel Systems, the Commission.

The European body said it looked closely at the merger and concluded that it would not "significantly impede effective competition".

Oracle won the approval of US regulators in November, and the company has said it expects to close the acquisition by the end of the first quarter next year.

The merged company would continue to face several strong competitors in the CRM software market, according to the Commission, which described the market segment as fragmented.

It also looked at possible "conglomerate" effects, including whether Siebel customers would be free to use non-Oracle database software.

"Widely-used open standards make it unlikely that the merged entity would impose restrictions on newly acquired SiebelÂ’s CRM customers as regards their use of non-Oracle databases," the Commission wrote.

"The Commission concluded that the proposed transaction would not materially affect customersÂ’ ability to choose between competing software vendors in their purchase of CRM solutions and, therefore, that the proposed acquisition would not give rise to competition concerns."