THE NETHERLANDS

VNU to Acquire U.S. Health Data Firm

The Dutch company VNU, which owns Nielsen Media Research, said it will acquire IMS Health of Connecticut for more than $6 billion, a major consolidation in the data-collection industry.

IMS sells data to medical and pharmaceutical firms on how their products are used. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter next year.

EUROPEAN UNION

Oil Prices, Deficits Concern E.U. Officials

E.U. Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia warned euro-group finance ministers that high oil prices could affect growth forecasts for the 12 countries that use the common currency and reiterated appeals for oil producers to boost production and for governments to increase energy efficiency. An E.U. finance ministers meeting is to begin today.

CANADA

Unocal Sells Oil, Gas Subsidiary

Takeover target Unocal agreed to sell its Canadian oil and gas subsidiary, Northrock Resources, to Houston-based Pogo Producing for $1.8 billion. Analysts said the sale would not involve Unocal resources coveted by rival bidders Chevron and Chinese government-run CNOOC.

CHINA

EBay Creates PayPal Site to Boost Business

EBay added a Chinese site for its PayPal payments service to boost its auctions business there. PayPal China is free initially and will include a buyer protection plan starting Sept. 1.

AIRLINES

Siemens to Engineer Airbus Internet System

Airbus is teaming with Germany's Siemens to create a satellite-based phone and data network that will compete with Boeing's in-flight Internet service.

Siemens signed an exclusive agreement with Airbus to provide the technology for the system. Airbus will integrate, maintain and market the system, which is expected to be available next year, Siemens said in a statement.

Compiled from staff and news service reports.