Minister of Commerce Osama Faqih announced today the formation in Riyadh of a National Energy Stock Company with a capital of SR 200 million [U.S. $53.4 million]. The number of shares is fixed at four million, each with a value of SR 50 [$13.35]. To date, the eleven founders of the company have paid 50 percent of the total value of the shares. The company will invest in projects involving power generation; transportation and operation; water desalination; sewerage; and real estate. According to its statute, the company will only be allowed to circulate its shares after two fiscal years. The members of the company's board of directors will be appointed by the general assembly of its shareholders for a period of three years. The establishment of the company comes within the framework of the State policy aimed at broadening the economic base and diversifying sources of national income as well as encouraging the private sector to play an effective role in accelerating economic progress.