The Belgian brewing combine, Interbrew, has lost its appeal to a Slovenian administrative court complaining against the takeover of the Slovenian brewer, Pivovarna Union, by the country's leading beermaker, Pivovarna Lasko.

The appeal was against a ruling by Slovenian competition authorities earlier this month.

Interbrew owns 41% of Union and wanted to move to a majority participation. However, Lasko moved to acquire a 48% stake in Union earlier this month and together with indirectly-held stakes now has an effective controlling majority of the company.

Interbrew said that with its participation in Union, Lasko effectively controls 95% of the Slovenian beer market which it said went against the principles of fair competition, particularly in light of Slovenia's plans to join the European Union.