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Johannesburg - South African transport group Barloworld Ltd said on Tuesday it has sold its Australian auto retail unit for 1.3 billion rand.

Barloworld, which had seven auto showrooms in Sydney and Melbourne, said it would used the cash to pay down debt and fund growth opportunities.

The deal - first announced last month - is effective March 31, 2014.

Shares in Barloworld were up 0.6 percent at 110.99 rand, largely in line with the JSE All-share index. - Reuters