Limit scrapped for foreign ownership in PVFCCo hinh anh 1Limit scrapped for foreign ownership in the PetroVietnam Fertilizer and Chemicals Corporation (PVFCCo). (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)Foreign investors can now acquire more than 49 percent of shares, the previous limit on foreign ownership, in PetroVietnam Fertilizer and Chemicals Corporation (PVFCCo), the operator of Phu My fertilizer plant. 

The decision was approved at the PVFCCo’s annual shareholder meeting in the southern province of Ba Ria – Vung Tau on April 26, following the State-owned Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam)’s plan to reduce its stake in the PVFCCo to less than 51 percent by 2020.

PetroVietnam, or PVN, are working to equitise several subsidiaries and divest from a dozen of others at the same time, said Dinh Van Son from the group’s Members’ Council.

The next phase will be to seek strategic investors for these companies to enable them to successfully restructure; therefore, PVN will closely coordinate with the PVFCCo and its shareholders to fast-track the divestment, he noted.

By the end of 2017, PVN owned 59.58 percent of shares in PVFCCo while foreign investors held a combined 20.44 percent. The firm’s shareholders agreed to remove the limit of foreign ownership to encourage strategic investors to step in.

To implement the decision, the PVFCCo will have to withdraw from 3 sectors subject to foreign ownership restrictions, including loading and unloading of goods, road freight transport, and inland waterway transport.

This move is part of the company’s plan to restructure from 2016 – 2020, in which it will shift focus onto the core business areas of producing and trading fertilizers.

Phu My Urea, a brand of fertilizer produced by PVFCCo, was listed in the Top 40 valuable brands in Vietnam voted by Forbes Vietnam in 2016.

The brand was ranked 30th with the brand value of 27 million USD and described by Forbes as the country’s leading brand in the fertilizer industry.

The company, which is listed as DPM on the stock market, is estimated to have produced nearly 826,000 tonnes of fertilizer last year, exceeding its yearly target by 7 percent. The trading volume of the plant is about 811,000 tonnes, surpassing the year’s plan by 3 percent.

As a result, PVFCCo continues to hold more than 40 percent of the domestic nitrogenous fertiliser market.-VNA