Manama: Bahrain is tapping the international bond market about a year after it secured a bailout package from its wealthier neighbours.
The island kingdom won’t raise more than $2 billion from the sale of dollar-denominated debt, which includes Sharia-compliant securities due 2027 and a conventional bond due 2031, according to a person familiar with the matter, who isn’t authorised to speak publicly and asked not to be identified. The deal may price today.
The potential issuance comes amid a sudden surge in debt sales by frontier and emerging sovereigns after the cost of borrowing declined. On Monday, Abu Dhabi raised $10 billion and South Africa finalised its biggest-ever debt deal.
If Bahrain goes ahead with the sale on Tuesday, it would be its first since Gulf Arab allies pledged $10 billion in aid in October to help stabilise the nation’s fragile finances. It delayed an offering earlier this year.
BNP Paribas SA, Citigroup Inc, Gulf International Bank BSC, JPMorgan Chase & Co., National Bank of Bahrain BSC and Standard Chartered Plc are managing the offering.
Bahrain is rated B+ by S&P Global Ratings, four notches below investment grade.