New industrial holding company formed

25 April 2003
Plans to partially privatise state-owned industries have taken a significant step forward with the launch in mid-April of a new company to take over the interests held by the government in four Mesaieed industrial companies. Industries of Qatarwill be listed on the Doha Securities Market (DSM) and have an initial public offering (IPO), due to take place in May, covering 15 per cent of its authorised share capital of QR 5,000 million ($1,370 million).

The IPO will be the largest since the government sell-off of a 45 per cent stake in Qatar Telecom (Q-Tel)and is part of a strategy to give the private sector a greater economic role (Qatar, MEED Special Report, 7:3:03, pages 28-30).

Industries of Qatar will take over the majority stakes held by Qatar Petroleum (QP)in Qatar Fertiliser Company (Qafco), Qatar Petrochemical Company (Qapco) and Qatar Fuel Additives Company (Qafac). It will also assume control of all the shares in the state-owned Qatar Steel Company (Qasco).

QP, which will hold an 85 per cent stake in Industries of Qatar, says that all the formalities related to the transfer of shares will be completed by the end of April. The next step will come in May, when a detailed circular will be issued for the IPO. The circular will provide details on the businesses being transferred to Industries of Qatar and the price of shares to be offered to investors.

Three international firms have been advising the government on the project. They are accountants Ernst & Young, law firm Clifford Chanceand HSBC.

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