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Nigeria Targets $2.5bn Eurobond Sale In Q1 To Refinance Local Debt | The Precision

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Nigeria will consider raising $2.5 billion through Eurobonds in the
first quarter to refinance a portion of its domestic treasury bill
portfolio at lower cost, the head of the Debt Management Office told
Reuters on Thursday. 

Patience Oniha said the country will also
try to get back into the JP Morgan Government Bond Index (GBI-EM), with
improving liquidity in the local currency market. 
She said a Eurobond placement will depend on market conditions, pricing and tenor. 
“We
are looking the issue probably first quarter depending on what the
advisers say and subject to the market conditions,” the DMO director
general told Reuters by phone. 
Nigeria could also look at a
possible syndicated loan as an alternative, Oniha said, adding that the
issue is part of a $5.5 billion fund raising program approved by
parliament last year. 

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Nigeria has said it plans to refinance $3 billion worth of a local treasury bill portfolio of 2.7 trillion naira ($8.9 bln). 
In
November, Nigeria sold $3 billion in Eurobonds, part of which it used
to fund its 2017 budget, and then paid off 198 billion naira in treasury
bills. 
Oniha said local debt yields have started to fall after
it paid off the bills in December, though debt was still attractive
especially to foreign funds looking at emerging market bonds. 
“The
reason JP Morgan took us out of the index was liquidity in the FX
market. Now there’s an investor window where activities have picked up,
that’s a good reason to try to get back in,” Oniha said. 
Nigeria
plans to raise $2.8 billion in new offshore loans as part of its 2018
budget. Oniha said she could tap capital markets or concessionary loans
from the World Bank. But the budget has to be approved by lawmakers
before funding options can be considered. (Reuters)

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