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Saudi Arabia: first international debt deal since Aramco attacks


Saudi Arabia has commissioned global banks, including US JP Morgan and Britain's Standard Chartered, to manage a $ 2.5 billion sukuk due in 2029, the kingdom's first international debt deal since last month's attack on Aramco, Reuters reported.

A bank document said the new sukuk would be finalized on Tuesday, saying the new sukuk deal would complement the kingdom's external financing needs for this year.

Separately, the government said it had issued domestic bonds worth 7.265 billion riyals ($ 1.94 billion).

Saudi Arabia has borrowed heavily in recent years to offset the negative impact of lower oil prices on public revenues.

Saudi Arabia raised 3 billion euros ($ 3.3 billion) on July 3 from the sale of bonds in the single European currency, as well as $ 7.5 million from conventional bonds in January.

Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil exporter, issued its first dollar-denominated international sukuk in April 2017 worth $ 9 billion.

In July, the Saudi finance ministry said the country's public debt stood at about 627.9 billion riyals ($ 167.4 billion) as of the end of the second quarter of 2019.

The decline in oil prices, the main source of income for the Kingdom, has accelerated the pace of government resort to debt markets over the past four years, and extended this year.

Saudi Arabia announced the largest budget in its history for 2019, spending $ 295 billion against revenues of $ 260 billion, expecting a deficit of $ 35 billion.

Source: aljazeera

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