Emirates National Oil Company to grow its retail business outside Dubai after UAE government cuts subsidies
The energy firm Emirates National Oil Company (ENOC) plans to expand its retail business outside Dubai, following the UAE’s move to cut fuel subsidies.
The company said in a statement it is looking at opportunities at a “local and regional level” over the next few years, but did not specify which countries it is targeting.
ENOC’s chief executive Saif Al Falasi cited the deregulation of fuel prices as a catalyst for the expansion plan, which he said the company had been deliberating for a while.
“ENOC will leverage its strong business model both at the local and regional level due to the company’s strong performance during the last five years,” said Al Falasi.
“With the Ministry of Energy having deregulated oil prices, this decision will now enable us to move forward with our expansion plans and continue investing in technologies that enhance customer service and experience. We will also meet the growing public demand for more service stations in line with the expected population growth in the UAE over the next five years.”
ENOC currently operates service stations, fuel terminals, oil tankers as well as a refinery and has stated that it will also pursue other opportunities outside its home market at various levels.
The company in June secured a $1.5 billion, nine-year loan from 21 banks to support its growth plans. Banking sources told Reuters in February that ENOC had hired a five-person team to work on mergers and acquisitions as it sought to expand beyond Dubai.
The decision by the UAE to deregulate oil prices will see the price of gasoline rise 24%, while diesel will fall 29%, from August 1. Prices will be reviewed monthly.