Dubai: Bukhatir Investments Ltd created the first Investment Agency Sukuk by signing an Islamic finance deal worth $50 million (Dh184 million).

Emirates Islamic Bank and Liquidity Management Centre were the lead arrangers of the deal, which will help support the expansion and investment activities of the Sharjah-based conglomerate.

The Sharia-compliant Sukuk Al Wakala Bel Istithmar is an innovative structure offering investors the opportunity to be part of an investment agency that will be managed by Bukhatir Investments.

The sukuk is a reducing investment with a five-year term issue maturing in 2011 and offering investors a return of 175 basis points over six-month dollar Libor and payable semi-annually.

At the signing ceremony in Sharjah, Vice-Chairman Salah Abdul Rahman Bukhatir said, "We are delighted to have such overwhelming support for the sukuk issue, which underscores the market's confidence in the ongoing expansion and investment plans of the Bukhatir Group.

"The participation of some of the region's leading financial institutions shows how significant this issue is in the growing Islamic finance market, and we are deeply honoured that we were the first to issue it."

The issue is fully underwritten by Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates Bank International, BankMuscat International, Gulf Finance House Commercial Bank and Sharjah Islamic Bank.