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Wednesday, 17 October 2018

FinMin looking at regulatory changes to allow sovereign sukuk issuances; eyes 2019 for maiden issuance

** #4 – EXCLUSIVE- FinMin looking at regulatory changes to allow sovereign sukuk issuances; eyes 2019 for maiden issuance: The Finance Ministry plans to introduce legislative amendments that could pave the way for the issuance of a sovereign sukuk offering as early as 2019, a senior government official tells us. The framework would explicitly make possible the issuance of sharia-compliant bonds in USD or EUR, a plan shelved since 2013. The ministry reportedly believes sukuk could be a cornerstone of its long-term debt-management strategy, which sees the government borrowing USD 20 bn over the course of the next four years.

Background: Finance Minister Maait had told us back in September that the government was unlikely to issue sukuks this fiscal year as there was no legislative framework in place allowing it. Recent legislative and regulatory changes allowed sukuk for corporates, but did not explicitly authority sovereign issues.

Ministry eyeing two-year local currency bonds? The same official tells us the Finance Ministry could introduce a two-year local-currency bond as it adjusts the tenor and local- / foreign-currency mix of its borrowing.

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