Etisalat UAE said restrictions on who could own its shares would be partly lifted, opening the stock to foreign and institutional ownership for the first time, according to Reuters.
Local and foreign institutions and expatriate individuals would be able to hold up to 20% of the company.
The operator did not share the reasons behind the decision, taken by the federal government, or when the change will take place.
The Emirates Investment Authority (EIA), a UAE government fund that owns 60% of the business, had no intention of reducing its Etisalat stake for the time being.
The remaining 40% of Etisalat shares are owned by individual Emirati citizens.