June 8, 2017 / 11:28 AM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Vietnam's Song Da Corp to IPO in 2019 -govt

(Adds context, details))

HANOI, June 8 (Reuters) - Vietnam's leading infrastructure company Song Da Corp has secured the prime minister's approval to conduct an initial public offering in 2019, the government website said on Thursday.

Communist Vietnam has slowly been pushing its state-owned enterprises to privatise to boost performance. The process has gained momentum since a new government took office last year.

The firm, which has registered capital of 4.5 trillion dong ($198.34 million), plans to sell a 30 percent stake to strategic partners and 18.82 percent to the public in the IPO, a statement on the government website said.

The government by the end of 2019 will lower its stake to 51 percent and will reduce it to below 50 percent the following year.

The IPO prices will be decided by the construction minister who will also set the criterion for choosing strategic partners.

Song Da Corp is the main contractor for most hydro power projects in Vietnam and has also built major infrastructure including tunnels, highways and factories.

Its 2016 pre-tax profit was 370 billion dong, down 35.2 percent from a year earlier.

$1=22,688 dong Reporting by My Pham; editing by Jason Neely

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