By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The search for transaction advisers for the proposed $3.3 billion Eurobond issuance by the Nigerian government has commenced.
In 2018, when Nigeria held the last Eurobond sale, of about $2.86 billion, the trio of Citigroup, Standard Chartered Bank and FSDH Merchant Bank were the financial advisers to the transaction, which was successful.
The aforementioned companies are very reputable and used by various organisations for raising funds at both local and international debt markets. However, it is not certain if any of them would be retained for the 2020 Eurobond exercise.
But the Debt Management Office (DMO has said it was presently working out who will handle the deal, noting that the appropriate transaction advisers would be selected through an open competitive bid process.
At the moment, the Senate is yet to approve the bond issuance because President Muhammadu Buhari is yet to write the upper chamber of the National Assembly concerning this. However, the request is expected to be submitted soon.
The debt office said part of the amount to be raised from the exercise would be used to refinance an existing $500 million Eurobond due in January 2021, while the others would be used to finance the 2020 budget deficit.
“Whilst the approval process is expected to be completed soon, transactions will be through an open competitive bidding process,” the DMO said.
Last year, federal government did not approach the foreign debt market to raise bonds as a result of the short budget cycle, but the return of the budget to a full cycle, coupled with the success of the $3 billion bond sale by Ghana is luring Nigeria to the market.
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