Westfield Group's proposed $70 billion split of its Australian and NZ business from its international shopping centres has been given the green light by two independent experts, who labelled the transaction ''fair and reasonable'' and in the best interests of shareholders. Frank Lowy's Westfield Group would carve off its Australian and NZ assets and merge the 47 malls, plus development and management operations with the separately listed Australia and New Zealand mall business of Westfield Retail Trust. This will create a new locally focused retail group called Scentre Group. The remaining international malls and joint ventures and management business in the US, Britain, Italy and mooted South American developments will form the new Westfield Corporation. The transaction ranks as a significant shake-up in the retail sector. It will see Mr Lowy remain as chairman of both groups, with his sons Steven and Peter focusing on the international business. If shareholders approve the proposal on May 29, the Lowy family will hold about 4.1 per cent of Scentre and about 8.4 per cent of Westfield Corporation, which is the same as their existing holding in Westfield Group. Debate over the deal has centred on the value placed on Westfield Group's business and development services, termed the ''operational platform'' that would be provided to the Scentre business, which was deemed too high. KPMG, the independent expert of the Westfield Retail Trust, in its 400-page document, has valued that operational platform at between $2.8 billion and $3.01 billion. If the value is deemed too high by shareholders, margins are so thin that it would be seen as uneconomic and the deal would sink. If that happened, the documents say Westfield Group could sell the Australian and New Zealand business without including WRT, or sell additional interests in individual Australian properties of Westfield Group. Under terms of the merger proposal, WRT security holders will hold 51.4 per cent of Scentre Group and receive a cash payment of $285.30 for every 1000 WRT stapled securities by way of a capital return; and 918 Scentre Group securities for every 1000 WRT stapled securities they currently hold. For the 48.6 per cent stake in Scentre, Westfield Group shareholders will receive 1000 shares in the new Westfield Corp and 1246 shares in Scentre for every 1000 shares currently owned. Mr Lowy said the restructure would create two leading businesses, designed to generate greater ''long-term growth and value for both Westfield Group and WRT investors''.