The Egypt-based African Export Import Bank (Afrexim) expects to complete a one-year $300m syndicated loan by the end of the year with a group of around 20 banks.

The deal has been increased in size from $200m as a result of a strong response from banks. Germany’s West LB is acting as lead coordinator on the deal, with other lenders including Bahrain’s Arab Banking Corporation, the UK’s HSBC and Standard Chartered, and Spain’s Intesa Sanpaolo.

Afrexim will pay lenders a margin of 3 per cent above the London interbank offered rate, which will be reduced to 2.75 per cent if the bank gets a rating of BBB- or above by two of Fitch, Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.

Banks were offered fees of between 1.4 per cent and 2 per cent, depending on how much they commit to the deal, giving a total interest rate of up to 5 per cent.

Lenders were able to commit to the deal in either euros or dollars. It was initially launched to the syndication market in early November.

One syndication banker working on the deal says, “Because banks are eager to book assets and there has been so few new deals from the region this has generated a lot of attention, even in the wake of the problems in Dubai.”