The £2bn sale means that Veolia is able to comply with an order from the Competition and Markets Authority, which said the merger would lessen competition in the UK market.

Suez is now set to become the third largest waste recycling and recovery company in the UK after Veolia and Biffa.

The acquisition brings around 6,000 employees into the SUEZ workforce. The business they operate generates an annual turnover of more than £900m.

Confirming the sale, Veolia said the £2bn price represented an ‘attractive valuation’.

John Scanlon, SUEZ recycling and recovery UK CEO, said: ‘As a business we have a wealth of expertise and knowledge in delivering new treatment infrastructure and transforming services, which we look forward to sharing with our new colleagues at SUEZ.

‘Our return to the Group comes at a pivotal time for the UK resources sector, with the long-awaited detail of Government reforms to extended producer responsibility and consistency in collections expected soon.’