General Motors could close the deal selling Opel to PSA by the end of July rather than the end of the year, media reports said.

In March, when PSA agreed to buy Opel in a deal valuing the business at EUR2.2bn (US$2.3 billion), the companies said the transaction could be completed by year end, Reuters noted.

But GM has now indicated a deal may be possible earlier than expected.

"We confirm that the closing is expected to take place in the second half of 2017 as planned, and that the date of 31 July constitutes a first assumption for the earliest possible date, subject to the decision of the competition authorities," Opel said in a statement cited by Reuters.

Germany's Allgemeine Zeitung  newspaper was first to report the closing date could be as early as the end of July.

A swift closing has been made possible because GM formally agreed to protect factory jobs by signing binding contracts last week, a trade union source told Reuters.

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By GlobalData

GM signed agreements handing workers co-determination rights at Opel Automobile, the new company that will be sold to PSA, and guaranteed it had set aside enough provisions to fund pension liabilities, the source told the news agency.

GM projects are now guaranteed for a period of three years, the Reuters source added.