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03 October 2023

Waha set to close $11bn finance

By Reuters

Abu Dhabi's Waha Capital expects to close a financing plan for the UAE Armed Forces to buy military aircraft worth Dh11 billion within a "few months", its chairman said.

Waha said earlier it had been mandated to arrange and manage financing that the armed forces would pursue to buy 12 C-130J Super Hercules from Lockheed Martin and four C17 military transport jets from Boeing.

"It will take a few months to finalise," Hussain Al Nowais said. "We are looking at different mechanics for securing finance and it could be bonds, financing from banks and some other means," he said, adding the long-term financing had received interest from local, regional and international banks.

The UAE Armed Forces announced on Tuesday it had finalised a deal to buy 16 aircraft in a deal worth about $2.8 billion (Dh10.28bn).

"The economic climate may not be very good at the moment but this is a good deal economically and it has the UAE Government's seal on it, so it will command good interest from lenders," Nowais said. The mandate is Waha Capital's largest to date.

Waha will work with the UAE Offsets Programme, Blenheim Capital Partners and others to facilitate the financing, said Nowais. The firm, formerly known as Oasis International Leasing Co, changed from a solely leasing company into an investment company last year.