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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Qatar to hold first IPO in nearly four years


qatar exchange

Mesaieed Petrochemical Holding Co. will conduct a QR3.2 billion ($880 million) initial public offering of its shares to Qatari citizens starting next week, officials have announced.

Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Minister of Finance Ali Sherif Al-Emadi said nationals will be able to buy shares in the company, which is a subsidiary of state-backed Qatar Petroleum, for QR10 each from Dec. 31 to Jan. 21.

Trading on the shares, which will account for 26 percent of the company, is slated to start in February, he added.

According to Reuters, this is the first IPO that Qatar’s stock market has seen since 2010, when Mazaya Qatar Real Estate Development Co joined the exchange.

Previously, both Qatar Airways and Al Jazeera have floated the idea of selling shares in their state-backed companies, but neither have done so.

Push to diversify

Currently, there are only 42 companies listed on the Qatar Stock Exchange, and most of them are large, government-backed entities.

Authorities have been encouraging family-owned businesses to list themselves on the exchange to boost liquidity and sustainability, as well as help Qatar diversify the economy away from natural gas.

However, the move has hit some snags. In May, Qatar announced that it was postponing a $12 billion initial public offering of newly formed Doha Global Investment, over delays in “regulatory approvals.”

That IPO was intended to be a way for Qataris to participate in the country’s global financial expansion, but was criticized by analysts as being over-ambitious.

Meanwhile, Minister of Energy and Industry Mohammed bin Saleh Al-Sada said today that Qatar plans to conduct IPOs worth QR50 billion ($13.7 billion) for its stock market over the next decade, Reuters reports.

At least three more of those IPOs could come from QP, which Qatar Exchange chairman Dr. Hussein Ali Al Abdullah said earlier this year plans to list four of its subsidiaries on the market in the future.



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