Two banks close in on Eurobond mandate

26 April 2002

Bank Markazi (central bank) is expected to go ahead with plans to award the mandate to lead arrange the country's first foreign-currency-denominated sovereign bond within weeks, Europe-based bankers say. The mandate award is expected to be preceded by the assignment of a sovereign credit rating by London-based rating agency Fitch(MEED 22:3:02).

It is understood that BNP Paribasand Commerzbankare well placed to win the joint mandate to lead the debut Eurobond, which will have a minimum size of $300 million with maturity of five-seven years. It will be open to international subscribers outside the US.

The central bank is expected to make a decision soon on whether to give the green light to Fitch to issue a sovereign credit rating. It is understood that the agency has completed its evaluation process and is in a position to publish a rating right away. Bankers say the rating is likely to come ahead of the bond issue, but do not consider it a precondition for a successful deal. 'I believe there is an investor base that would buy the paper even without a rating,' says one European banker.

The only agency that currently rates Iran is US-based Moody's Investors Service, which maintains a sub-investment-grade B2 rating. The outlook on the rating is positive due to Iran's strong macroeconomic performance in the past two years.

You might also like...

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