Nigeria to issue first Diaspora bond, says DMO

The Debt Management Office (DMO) on Thursday announced the commencement of a global offering of Nigeria’s first Diaspora Bond.

DMO made this known in a statement obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) from its website. It said that the nation had filed a registration statement for the bonds with the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission. It said that application would be made for the bonds to be admitted to the official list of the UK Listing Authority and the London Stock Exchange Plc. The office said this was to ensure that the bonds were admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange’s regulated market.

“The bonds will be direct general obligations of Nigeria and will be denominated in U.S. dollars. “The international Joint Lead Managers are Bank of America Merrill Lynch and The Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd. “The Nigerian Joint Lead Managers are First Bank of Nigeria Ltd. and United Bank for Africa Plc,’’ it said.

It said there would be a series of investor meetings in the UK, the U. S. and Switzerland from June 13. The office said that pricing was expected to occur following the investor meetings and subject to market conditions. It said that Diaspora bond was used to raise funds from Nigerians in the Diaspora to finance capital projects and provide an opportunity for them to participate in the development of the country. As part of measures to fund capital expenditures, the Federal Government had in February announced its offering of one billion dollars euro bond under its newly-established one billion dollars Global Medium Term Note programme.

The office said that the one billion dollars euro bond, which would mature on Feb. 16, 2032, was eight times oversubscribed in the international market at an interest rate of 7.8 per cent with orders in excess of 7.8 billion dollars.

Folasade Folarin