Saudi Arabia Ready for Aramco’s Share Sale in Domestic Market

  • Kingdom planning to sell stake in state-owned oil monopoly
  • Shares may be listed on exchanges in London, New York

Saudi Post-Oil Revolution: Implementing Vision 2030

Saudi Arabia is ready for the initial public offering of Saudi Arabian Oil Co. in the domestic market, with additional work needed if there is a decision to sell shares in more than one country, according to the vice chairman of the kingdom’s market regulator.

"The only additional precaution that may be needed is certain preparations for a potential joint listing,” Mohammed Elkuwaiz of the Capital Markets Authority told reporters at a conference in Riyadh Tuesday. “Most of that work is less on the regulatory side and more on the operational side which is basically the exchange connecting with other exchanges.”

Saudi Aramco plans to sell shares on the Saudi stock market and is also considering foreign bourses in London, Hong Kong and New York, Chief Executive Officer Amin Nasser said in October. The world’s biggest oil company is planning to sell shares in the entire business, he said. Aramco’s plan to sell a stake of about 5 percent could value the company in the trillions of dollars.

The kingdom has sold its first international bonds, raising $17.5 billion in the biggest-ever issue from an emerging-market nation, and is taking steps to make the Middle East’s largest stock market more accessible to foreign investors.

"Both the Aramco IPO and the activities of the Saudi market to attract more foreign investors are moving in parallel," Elkuwaiz said.

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