MORE mergers and acqusitions activity is likely in the oil and gas sector this year as firms compete for the funding required in a capital intensive industry.

Experts at Ernst & Young predicted more companies will be able to complete initial public offerings and join the stock market amid increased investor interest in supporting new ventures rather than supporting firms that are already listed. But Ally Rule, oil and gas transactions partner at Ernst & Young, said: "Like those already listed, the growing queue of potential IPO candidates will find demand for capital exceeds demand."

"The capital imbalance ... is likely to lead to further consolidation in the sector."

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