Oman’s OQGN to Float 49% of its Stakes

Oman’s OQGN to Float 49% of its Stakes

Oman’s OQ Gas Networks (OQGN), the pipelines business of state oil giant OQ, said it planned to float up to 49% of its shares through Oman Energy Trading Company Limited and Oman Oil Services Limited, in what is expected to be the biggest initial public offering (IPO) in the Sultanate in almost two decades.

The offering, which begins this month, will give investors access to growth in the company, which has a natural monopoly on primary gas transportation in the country, the company said in a statement.

The IPO could raise between $700 million and $800 million, which would make it the largest since Oman Telecommunications (Omantel) raised 288 million rials ($748 million) by selling a 30% stake in 2005, according to Reuters.

The selling shareholders reserve the right to amend the size at any time before the end of the subscription period. Immediately after the offering, OQ will continue to hold a minimum of 51%.

As the exclusive gas transportation system operator in Oman, OQGN supplies natural gas to power stations, free zones, industrial parks, LNG complexes and other customers.

Oman is following Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia in considering selling stakes in energy assets, taking advantage of the rebound in crude oil prices to attract foreign investors and boost interest in their stock exchanges.

“The listing of OQGN, which owns and operates critical gas transportation infrastructure in Oman, is in line with this ambition, while enriching the dynamically developing Omani stock market,” said Talal Al Awfi OQ’s Group Chief Executive.

OQGN’s IPO is part of a divestment program by Oman’s sovereign wealth fund.

The shares are expected to list on the Muscat Stock Exchange in October.

The company plans to pay a semi-annual dividend in cash to investors after the offering.  A first dividend of 33 million rials for the first nine months of 2023 is estimated to be paid around next January, and a second dividend of 11 million for the last three months of 2023 will be paid around April next year.

Oman is primarily reliant on hydrocarbon revenue despite some reforms and plans to diversify its economy.

The reforms and a shake-up of state entities are being driven by Sultan Haitham bin Tariq al-Said, who took the throne in early 2020 after the death of Sultan Qaboos.

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Doaa Ashraf 462 Posts

Doaa is a staff writer with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communication, majoring Journalism from Ahram Canadian University. She has 2-3 years of experience in copywriting, and content creation.

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