National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) is planning to raise up to $1bn in a bond issue and has appointed the US’ Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, the UK’s HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, and Barclays Capital; and NBAD, to run the deal.

The bank is meeting potential investors in the issue through mid-March, and a bond could be issued by early April.

Activity in the Gulf bond market has been slow so far this year, with only Saudi real estate developer Dar al-Arkan having completed a $450m issue.

NBAD delayed plans to issue a bond in February as a result of poor market conditions.