(Reuters) – Egypt has postponed its plans to sell a minority stake in state-owned Banque du Caire (BQDC.CA) in an initial public offering (IPO) starting mid-April due to the spread of the coronavirus, a local newspaper on Sunday quoted the bank chairman as saying.
Chairman Tarek Fayed had told Reuters in March that the plan remained to sell the stake, worth about $500 million, provided investor interest held up in the face of the virus.
“Plans to offer a share of the bank on the Egyptian Stock Exchange are currently deferred due to the spread of the new coronavirus globally and locally, and the impact on both local and global stock markets,” Fayed told the private Almasry Alyoum newspaper in an interview published on Sunday.
He provided no further detail.
The sale would be Egypt’s biggest sale of state assets since 2006.
The bank is part of a revived privatization program involving a long list of state companies which was announced three years ago but which has faced repeated delays.