PotashCorp seeks new BHP documents in court tussle

TORONTO (BestGrowthStock) – Potash Corp (POT.TO: ) has asked a U.S. court to compel its would-be buyer BHP Billiton (BHP.AX: ) to produce all communications with regulators and government officials that relate to BHP’s $39 billion offer to acquire the Canadian fertilizer company.

The tussle over documents stems from Potash Corp’s lawsuit seeking a preliminary injunction to block BHP’s $130-a-share offer for Potash Corp, the world’s largest fertilizer maker. BHP has asked the court to dismiss the suit.

Both sides have also submitted a list of documents that they say are needed to bolster their arguments in the case.

Saskatchewan-based Potash Corp is seeking access to what BHP has told agencies like the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, the Canadian Competition Bureau and other authorities, as it believes that Anglo-Australian miner BHP has not been truthful in outlining its plans for Potash Corp and the industry.

It says communications with government officials are relevant, and would be relatively simple to produce given that most of these communications most probably occurred recently.

BHP says the communications are privileged and immune from the ongoing discovery process in the case.

Potash Corp, for its part, argues that communicating any information to a government entity typically waives a claim of privilege to the information.

Potash Corp intends to present its arguments relating to this matter before a judge on October 19.

The case is Potash Corp v. BHP Billiton in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois Eastern Division, No. 1:10-cv-06024.

(Reporting by Euan Rocha; editing by Janet Guttsman)

PotashCorp seeks new BHP documents in court tussle