US cellular operator Verizon Wireless is set to close its merger with smaller rival Alltel Corp on 9 January, creating the country’s largest mobile network. The closing date is subject to satisfaction or waiver of the closing conditions set forth in the merger agreement, Dow Jones reports. The deal has been approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Department of Justice. Verizon and Alltel have more than 84 million subscribers between them, though Verizon has agreed that the merged company will dispose of network assets and subscribers in 100 markets to satisfy competition concerns. The current market leader by subscribers, AT&T, had just under 75 million customers at the end of September.