The move is part of the Abu Dhabi energy firm’s partnership model strategy

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) is planning to spin off its maritime business as part of its strategy to expand its partnership model.

Adnoc is to merge three maritime transport and service businesses – Abu Dhabi National Tanker Company (Adnatco) with Petroleum Services Company (Esnaad) and Abu Dhabi Petroleum Ports Operating Company (Irshad) – and will then list the merged entity, according to a report by news agency Bloomberg.

The merger is reportedly planned to take place by the end of 2017, Adnoc said in a statement last October, with the listing set for 2019.

An Adnoc spokesperson declined to comment on the story but told MEED the company was going through a process of integration.

According to reports, Adnoc’s merged maritime business will operate more than 165 vessels including natural gas carriers, oil product tankers, tugboats and support vessels.

The state-run oil company is also reported to be considering an initial public offering (IPO) of its retail unit Adnoc Distribution, worth an estimated $14bn.

The latest development comes after Adnoc’s announcement in July that it was looking to form partnerships with international oil companies and publicly list minority stakes in some businesses across upstream midstream, refining and petrochemicals.

Later that month, Adnoc said it was in talks with Chinese and Japanese firms to invest across various segments of its value chain.

Adnoc subsidiary Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Petroleum Operations (Adco) offered eight per cent of its stake to China Petroleum Corporation earlier this year, while CEFC China Energy Company won a four per cent stake, as the emirate looks to streamline its business interests amid low oil prices.

Energy firms in the region are following the lead of Saudi Aramco – which has planned for an IPO listing next year –as part of their efforts to move their economies away from oil.