DUBAI, United Arab Emirates ( Associated Press) — Dubai’s Water and Electricity Authority, known as DEWA, ​​began trading for the first time on Tuesday, after raising more than $6 billion during its initial public offering, This is the second largest offering in the middle so far. east.

While that figure is still well below the record $29.4 billion raised by Saudi oil giant Aramco, This marks a turning point for Dubai at a time when high oil prices are increasing the spending power of the economies and energy-producing Gulf Arab states.

The state-owned utility began trading on the Dubai Stock Exchange with a market capitalization of dirhams 124 billion, or approximately $33.7 billion. DEWA priced its shares at 2.48 dirhams, or 68 cents a share, but trading, as expected, was slightly higher at its market debut, before settling for much of the day at 2.9 dirhams per share. . The company plans to pay dividend to the investors twice a year.

The listing comes as DEWA, ​​Dubai’s specialized electricity and water utility provider, is positioned as central to the UAE’s energy transition to net zero by 2050.

Dubai is an energy-intensive city of skyscrapers and an endless stream of high-end hotels and sprawling malls – including one with an indoor ski slope and the other with an indoor ice skating rink – to keep the Persians air-conditioned year-round. is needed. The heat and humidity of the Gulf is over. The emirate, like other parts of the Gulf, relies almost entirely on desalinated water plants for potable water.

DEWA said it hopes to supply all of Dubai’s desalinated water capacity by 2030 using clean energy and waste heat. Funds raised from the public sale of shares in DEWA could help offset some of the costs of the emirate’s energy transition.

DEWA owns 70% of cooling service provider Empower as well as bottled water manufacturer My Dubai, among other companies.

DEWA says it is ready to meet the even more increased demand for electricity and water in Dubai, with the government aiming to increase the population of mostly foreigners and expatriates from 3.5 million to 5.8 million by 2040.

Emirati citizens, who make up a fraction of the country’s total population, receive generous electricity and water subsidies, which are paid for by foreign residents in monthly DEWA bills.

The government initially stated that it would go public with 6.5% of the company, but this was increased to 18% due to demand from local and international investors.

Listing is part of a comprehensive plan Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, son of Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, last November announced the listing of 10 state industries on the stock exchange to boost his profile and raise new capital for the emirate.

Also on Tuesday, Dubai Investments, another company listed on the Dubai Stock Exchange, said it is selling a 50% stake in its district cooling subsidiary Amicool to London-based investment firm Actis for $1 billion. Amicool provides cooling services to many areas of Dubai including its metro stations, Damak Hills and Dubai Motor and Sports Cities.

In a statement shared by the companies, they said the sale is aimed at supporting Amicool towards becoming a leading provider of sustainable and efficient cooling services in the region.