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Abu Dhabi plans roadshow for $20bn debt issues


By Reuters

Abu Dhabi is preparing a series of investor presentations for the Gulf emirate's upcoming issues of sovereign and quasi-sovereign debt though no timetable has been set yet, IFR Markets said.

A figure of $20 billion (Dh73.5bn) is being mentioned as a potential pipeline amount, IFR, a unit of Thomson Reuters, said.

Abu Dhabi, a key Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) member, is seen tapping debt markets this year to finance a range of infrastructure projects as well as ease issuance for government-linked firms.

Abu Dhabi Government-owned International Petroleum Investment Company (Ipic) has also launched a $2.5bn, three-year term loan that will refinance existing debt, banking sources close to the deal said yesterday.

Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, HSBC, National Bank of Abu Dhabi and Santander are likely to be arranging the deal.

Citibank, JP Morgan and Standard Chartered are working with Abu Dhabi's debt management office on the presentations but no dates or venues for the meetings have been confirmed, IFR said.

Abu Dhabi's debt management office was not immediately available for comment. JP Morgan and Standard Chartered declined to comment on the issue.

Abu Dhabi is not under pressure to sell debt due to its vast oil wealth.

The emirate last tapped markets in April 2009, selling $3bn worth of debt.

Its entities issued another $7bn worth of debt in 2009, according to IFR data released to reporters.

The six-nation GCC, the world's top oil exporting region, saw a series of debt issues last year as governments boosted spending to help economies recover and risk appetite improved following the 2008 global financial crisis. The cost of insuring five-year Abu Dhabi debt against default stood at 142 basis points yesterday.


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