Deadline extended for Emal financing offers

04 April 2010

Emirates Aluminium gives banks extra time on export credit facility

UAE-based Emirates Aluminium (Emal) has extended to 7 April the deadline for banks to respond to requests to finance a $420m loan backed by export credit agencies (ECAs).

The extension gives banks an extra week to get internal approvals for the loans. Emal and its adviser on the project, US-based Citigroup, sent out the invitations to banks at the beginning of March (MEED 18:3:10).

The $420m loan is part of a $700m funding package for the development of the aluminium smelter being built at Taweelah in Abu Dhabi. The $420m loan is guaranteed by France’s Coface and Germany’s Hermes, with the rest of the $700m coming from a direct Export-Import Bank of the US (US Exim) loan.

One banker who has been invited to fund the ECA-backed loans says, “Pricing is very low on these loans so it may be tough to generate a strong interest.”

France’s Credit Agricole (formerly Calyon), has been appointed as a mandated lead arranger on the ECA financing deal.

Emal needs to raise an additional $2bn funding to replace a bond issue that was scheduled to occur in early 2008 but never happened. The bond issue would have followed the close of $4.9bn of project finance for the construction of the first phase of the project.

Emal is also in talks with a group of banks about appointing an adviser for the $5bn second phase expansion of the project. The banks include the UK’s HSBC, Frances’ BNP Paribas, and Citigroup.

A MEED Subscription...

Subscribe or upgrade your current MEED.com package to support your strategic planning with the MENA region’s best source of business information. Proceed to our online shop below to find out more about the features in each package.

Get Notifications