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Lafarge, Holcim say in advanced merger talks

PARIS/ZURICH, April 4 (Reuters) - French and Swiss cement makers Lafarge and Holcim said on Friday they were in advanced discussions over a possible merger of equals, but that no agreement had yet been reached.

"Lafarge and Holcim believe that ... there is rationale in considering a potential merger that could deliver significant benefits to customers, employees and shareholders," Lafarge said in a statement.

Shares in both companies rose earlier following a report of a possible merger aimed at creating the worlds' largest cement company with a market value of more than $50 billion.

(Reporting by Natalie Huet in Paris and Alice Baghdjian in Zurich; Editing by James Regan)