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Saudi Arabia Is Said to Seek Adviser for Sale of Water Network

Saudi Arabia’s National Water Co. is seeking financial advisers to arrange the sale of parts of the country’s water distribution network, according to people familiar with the matter.

NWC, as the company is known, could raise several billion dollars from the process, depending on how big a stake it sells in the network or whether it decides to break up the system and sell it to multiple parties, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. The company hopes to complete the deal next year, they said.

A slump in the price of crude has led Saudi Arabia to embark on an effort to wean the economy off oil known as Vision 2030 and spearheaded by the king’s son and heir, Mohammed bin Salman. The plan includes boosting non-oil revenue through the privatization of hundreds of state assets, including state-owned Saudi Arabian Oil Co., or Saudi Aramco, the stock exchange and soccer clubs, in addition to efforts to cut government spending.

A spokesman for NWC, which is owned by the Public Investment Fund, Saudi Arabia’s sovereign investment vehicle, wasn’t able to immediately comment and said the company may issue a response at a later stage.

— With assistance by Sarah Algethami

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