The syndication to Omani banks of the debt package for the Salalah independent power project (IPP) was expected to close by the end of November. It is understood that five local banks had by the middle of the month committed about $45 million between them and that there were another two regional banks with operations in Oman that were still considering participating in the transaction (MEED 2:11:01).
'We are pleased with how the local syndication has gone,' said a banker close to the deal in mid-November. 'We were originally targeting $30 million-40 million from the local banks and we could end up with more than $50 million.'
A decision over whether to launch the transaction on the international syndications market has been postponed. 'We will have to look at the market and decide if there is appetite for this, but things are improving,' said the banker. 'If we were to launch it, we would only be looking for about $80 million-100 million to get to our sell-down targets.'
BNP Paribas, WestLBand BankMuscatare the lead arrangers of the $225 million debt package. The facility has tenor of 16 and a half years, and a step-up pricing structure, which starts at 125 basis points (bp) over Libor during the pre-completion stage, drops to 115 bp for years one-six after completion, rises to 130 bp for years seven-11, and steps up to 150 bp thereafter (MEED 10:8:01).
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