Ecuador aims to list shares of state oil company Petroecuador in the medium term after concluding a merger process at the end of the year with fellow state oil company Petroamazonas, focused on exploration and production, according to Reuters.
Néstor Luna, who heads the Temporary Merger Unit between the two companies, said that listing on the stock market would bring the merged company in line with other state-owned oil companies in Latin America and would give it strength to attract more foreign investment to the strategic sector.
The news was replicated by Nasdaq, the world’s largest international financial market. Other companies in the region, such as Colombia’s Ecopetrol, Argentina and Brazil’s Petrobras are listed.
“We want to create a roadmap to begin a listing process in the medium or long term,” said Luna, adding that the timing of the listing and the final decision would depend on the company’s board of directors.
The merged company, which will keep the Petroecuador name, plans to dedicate more resources to the exploration and production of crude oil, one of the key axes in the value chain of the Ecuadorian oil sector, Luna said.
The merger is part of the market-friendly policies implemented by President Lenín Moreno, since he took office in 2017, to reactivate the economy.
Ecuador signed a $ 6.5 billion loan with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in September after the coronavirus and falling oil prices devastated its public finances.
Petroecuador has so far focused mainly on the transportation, refining and commercialization of oil, while Petroamazonas operates 23 crude oil blocks in the Amazon and coastal region of the country. (I)