RIYADH: Egypt is planning to raise $6 billion by June 2023 through selling stakes in government companies as the nation tries to revive an economy badly affected by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Bloomberg, citing Egypt’s planning minister Hala El-Said, reported that the move will include share offerings to the public or block sales to strategic investors, backed by the country’s sovereign wealth fund.
She did not reveal the names of the companies which will be listed for an initial public offering.
The Bloomberg report further revealed that the stakes of some companies owned by Egypt’s army will be sold as a part of this program.
Earlier this month, Egypt set up a new fund to assist government companies in getting listed on the stock exchange. The pre-IPO fund aims to restructure some state-owned assets and prepare them for stake sales.
El-Said revealed that the ultimate target is to transfer assets worth $3 billion to the fund within three to six weeks, and it includes the assets of a power plant co-built by Siemens AG.
The planning minister said that Egypt will conduct road shows in Europe and Asia at the end of October to showcase the investment opportunities in the country.
She added that sovereign wealth funds within the Gulf and other regions will be approached to buy stakes in Egyptian entities.
“Sovereign wealth funds are usually long-term investors, they add value in terms of expertise, finance and technology,” she said. The Bloomberg report further pointed out that Abu Dhabi’s ADQ and a unit of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund have already invested roughly $3 billion to buy shares in Egyptian firms owned by the government.
Apart from eyeing more foreign investments, Egypt is also negotiating a new loan with the International Monetary Fund.
Egypt’s fuel and food imports bill has soared as a result of the Ukraine war, and the country witnessed $22 billion in outflows from the local debt market since March 2022.
Egypt had considered listing 10 government companies on the stock exchange this year, but the Russian-Ukraine crisis apparently delayed the plans.