Saudi Aramco 'absolutely ready' for IPO: minister

Saudi oil giant Aramco is "absolutely ready" for its long-awaited IPO but several regulatory procedures remain, the kingdom's economy minister told the Future Investment Initiative conference in Riyadh on Thursday (October 25th).

After reports that the initial public offering had been scrapped, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said early this month that it will go ahead in late 2020 or at the start of 2021, two years later than expected, AFP reported.

Saudi Arabia plans to sell up to 5% of the world's largest energy firm and hopes to raise up to $100 billion.

"In terms of readiness, the company is absolutely ready to the best of global standards," Economy and Planning Minister Mohammed al-Tuwaijri told the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference.

He said all the financial requirements for the equity sale were ready and a new board was in place.

But lengthy regulatory processes still needed to be completed, especially over the planned acquisition of a majority stake in Saudi petrochemicals giant SABIC.

The IPO -- expected to be the world's largest stock sale -- forms the cornerstone of a reform programme envisaged by Prince Mohammed to wean the Saudi economy off its reliance on oil.

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