Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 7 August 2020

Oman planning to list 20-25 per cent of state oil company

Sultanate's oil minister says options being considered include a private placement and a listing on an international market

Oman oil minister Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy at the GPCA Forum in Abu Dhabi. Oman, one of the smaller oil Gulf producers is not a member of Opec. Reem Mohammed/The National
Oman oil minister Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy at the GPCA Forum in Abu Dhabi. Oman, one of the smaller oil Gulf producers is not a member of Opec. Reem Mohammed/The National

Oman is planning to list “20 to 25 per cent” of state-backed Oman Oil Company next year, the Sultanate's oil minister, Mohamed Al Rumhy said.

The sultanate will follow in the footsteps of Saudi Arabia, which is currently in the process of listing 1.5 per cent of its state-owned oil firm - a move which could raise up to 96 billion (Dh94bn) Saudi riyals and place an overall valuation on the company of between $1.6 trillion-$1.7tn (Dh5.88tn-Dh6.24tn). Saudi Aramco is the world’s largest oil-exporting company and its flotation could take place as early as next week.

"Oman Oil is thinking [of] a group of companies to go private. By [the] end of next year, the process will be completed," said Mr Al Rumhy.

He said that a number of options were being considered, including an initial private placement of shares ahead of any listing process, and a potential listing on an international market.

Oman Oil was established in 1996 and has several different business lines including exploration and production, energy infrastructure, refining, shipping, petrochemicals, power and metals, among others. It has also made a number of international investments.

Mr Al Rumhy also told reporters on the sidelines of the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association's annual forum in Dubai on Wednesday that Gulf oil ministers are “in consensus” about extending the current pact by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies to cut production to balance global oil inventories.

Opec+, the alliance led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, has been cutting back 1.2 million barrels per day from global oil markets since the beginning of the year, with the pact currently scheduled to hold until March 2020.

“The consensus among the GCC ministers is number one, to extend the agreement. We’ve never discussed price, but we want stability, we want to remove the volatility in the market,” Mohammed Al Rumhy told reporters in Abu Dhabi.

Opec’s members and allies are convening in Vienna tomorrow and Friday to discuss compliance with the pact and a possible extension of current restrictions. Oman, one of the smaller Gulf producers, is not a member of Opec.

Thamer Ghadhban, oil minister of Iraq, Opec’s second-largest producer said on Sunday the group was considering a further deepening of cuts by 400,000 bpd.

Mr Rumhy declined to comment on any plans to deepen cuts.

Brent, the most widely used benchmark was up 0.56 per cent and trading at $61.16 per barrel at 11.46am UAE time, while West Texas Intermediate was up 0.43 per cent at $56.34 per barrel.

Updated: December 4, 2019 02:10 PM

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