BRUSSELS, Sept 19 (Reuters) - The European Commission said on Tuesday it has approved German drugs and pesticides group Bayer's request for an extension of the investigation into the $66 billion deal to acquire U.S. group Monsanto .
The Commission has been scrutinising the proposed takeover with a deadline of Jan. 8 but Bayer said in a statement it had asked the regulator for an extension on the investigation to Jan. 22.
"We can confirm that the deadline for the Commission to decide on the proposed merger has been extended until 22 January," a Commission spokesman said.
"The parties have requested a 10 day extension for the in-depth investigation, as they are entitled to according to the Merger Regulation." (Reporting by Alissa de Carbonnel @AdeCar)