Aramco CEO says IPO size still to be decided

by BLOOMBERG

ABU DHABISaudi Arabian Oil Co (Aramco) is still waiting for a decision on how many of its shares will be offered to the public, or where the listing will be made outside of the kingdom, according to CEO Amin Nasser (picture).

The shares will definitely be listed in Saudi Arabia’s market known as Tadawul, Nasser told reporters yesterday at a conference in Abu Dhabi. The UK, Hong Kong and US are competing for the international listing.

“We are ready for all different stock exchanges, we are prepared and ready,” Nasser said. “There’s definitely going to be a listing on Tadawul.” The decision on how much to list is being reviewed, he said.

The Saudi Aramco initial public offering (IPO) could be the world’s largest, with the Saudi government initially hoping to raise US$100 billion (RM419 billion) selling about 5% of the company. It is the centrepiece of Crown Prince Mohammed Salman’s reform plan, intended to diversify the kingdom’s economy and invest more heavily in infrastructure. Even if Aramco raises US$50 billion, it would still be double the current largest IPO, the US$25 billion raised by China’s Alibaba Group Holding Ltd in 2014.

Aramco plans to invest close to US$300 billion, mostly on upstream oil and gas projects, in the next 10 years, both in and out of Saudi Arabia, Nasser said. The company will expand refining capacity from five million barrels a day (bdp) to eight to 10 million barrels bpd, he said, without giving a timeframe. — Bloomberg