Engro to go global, says main investor

Expansion plans include telecoms infrastructure in ME, North Africa, and Central Asia

REUTERS May 09, 2024


Pakistan’s largest conglomerate, Engro Corp, is looking to expand into new markets, including the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa, the chemicals-to-energy company’s largest investor said on Tuesday.

Speaking to Reuters in a rare interview, Samad Dawood, Vice Chairman of Dawood Hercules Corp, which owns 40% of Engro Corp, said the company was also considering global liquefied natural gas (LNG) opportunities as well as hydrogen energy.

The expansion plans include looking at telecoms infrastructure in the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia, while it is looking at Africa to expand its fertiliser businesses, he said.

Engro Corp has a market capitalisation of Rs193 billion ($694 million) on the Pakistan Stock Exchange and assets of Rs802 billion ($2.9 billion), according to public data.

The group has businesses across multiple sectors in Pakistan, including energy, fertiliser, telecommunications and consumer goods.

It owns 56% of Pakistan’s first LNG terminal, Engro Elengy Terminal Pakistan, which was set up in the southern city of Karachi in 2015. Dutch energy logistics giant Royal Vopak owns the remaining 44%.

The terminal fulfils 15% of Pakistan’s natural gas demand. Dawood said Engro will continue to invest in the energy sector despite having sold its coal-based assets, and was exploring new avenues for sustainable energy production.

He said the company was talking to technology providers in the hydrogen energy sector to figure out how to use ammonia as an energy transition solution. Dawood added that Pakistan was far from being energy-secure and there were plenty of opportunities to invest further in the power sector.

Pakistan has moved toward reliance on LNG after its own domestic gas supplies dwindled fast as consumption in the industrial and residential sectors increased.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 9th, 2024.

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