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Mozambique’s Petromoc studies listing in S/Africa, Europe

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Mozambique´s state-owned Petroleos de Mocambique, distributor of petroleum products, is studying the possibility of an initial public offering in either South Africa or Europe as part of a rapid expansion plan. It also plans to raise the company’s profile, the Mozambican media reported on Friday, quoting its chief executive, Nuno de Oliveira on Friday.

Also known as Petromoc, the second-largest company in the Southeast African country is still discussing various details such as listing venue and amounts to be raised with Banco Internacional de Mozambique SA.

Nuno de Oliveira said “We have been evaluating it [listing plan] for about a month now with our shareholders on how best we can do this,” adding that he had inked an initial agreement with Malaysia-based Hyrax Oil Sdn Bhd to build a blending plant in Mozambique.

Foreign investors have been rushing into Mozambique as the country moves to tap its rich offshore gas reserves.

Once an economic basket case ravaged by decades of war and drought, the country led by former president Joaquim Chissano has rolled back the Marxist command economy, while the smart use of donor aid helped to stabilize the currency and rehabilitate the agricultural sector.

Last month, China National Petroleum Corp. bought a stake in Eni SpA’s assets in Mozambique for $4.2 billion while India’s state-run Oil & Natural Gas Corp. (500312.BY) and Oil India Ltd. (533106.BY) have made a joint bid for a 20 percent stake in a Mozambique oil and gas field operated by Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (APC).

Petromoc owns the largest retail network of 119 filling stations and supply posts throughout Mozambique. The company mainly sells lubricants, fuels and oils as well as operates storage facilities and pipelines in all main Mozambican ports.

De Oliveira said the company also plans to build a 40,000 barrel a day gas-to-liquid plant in Mozambique with South Africa state-owned oil company PetroSA that may require an initial investment of $1 billion.

Gas-to-liquid plants typically convert natural gas or other gaseous hydrocarbons into gasoline or diesel fuel.

“The feasibility study is expected to be completed by June and [if successful] it will increase supply of diesel to meet the region’s demand,” he added.

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