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The Daily Roundup

Banque Centrale Populaire launches €100mn green bond – Nigeria DMO struggles with ‘disastrous’ bond issuance – Venezuela to draw US$2.2bn Chinese credit line – Chile announces US$4bn solar project – Argentina’s opposition says debt sale broke the law – Qatar Insurance Co to issue fresh benchmark bonds

Nov 18, 2016 // 6:28PM

Moroccan bank Banque Centrale Populaire (BCP) has launched a €100mn green bond to refinance existing investments into renewable energy projects. The move comes days after the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) announced plans to launch tenders to construct two 400MW solar plants by the beginning of 2017.

Nigeria's Debt Management Office (DMO) raised NGN39bn (US$128.21mn) in bonds maturing in 5, 10 and 20 years, less than half the NGN95bn it aimed to raise, with investors looking to much higher yields than those on offer. Interest rates on the notes sold ranged between 15.48% and 15.94%, while many investors sought up to 18%.

Saudi Arabian fashion retail owner Fawaz Al Hokair is close to finalising an up to US$1.1bn loan to acquire Saudi Oger's 21% stake in Arab Bank, according to a report from Reuters. The bank plans to use the funds to help repay up to US$1bn in debt maturing next year.

Venezuela said it would tap into US$2.2bn from a credit line provided by China to boost oil output at joint ventures with China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC), in a bid to boost the country's struggling economy and oil sector. Embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said the OPEC country would boost production by about 277,000 barrels per day.

Chile plans to develop a solar park of between 750MW to 1GW capacity to power the mining industry in the Atacama region, according to a release from Chilean development agency Corfo. The 'Solar District' project will carry a price tag of at least US$4bn.

In Argentina, various members of congress who were part of populist President Cristina Fernandez's centre-left Peronist coalition brought a legal complaint against President Mauricio Macri, claiming the country's debt sale harmed the state, and complaints Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay and Central Bank President Federico Sturzenegger of "fraudulent administration" over allegations they issued an excessive number local currency notes, or Lebacs. In the months that followed the country's landmark US$16.5bn bond sale, the opposition has repeatedly criticised the Macri administration for issuing too much debt.

Brazil's federal government is considering sharing BRL5bn (US$1.5bn) in fines from an asset repatriation program with cash-strapped states as the economy struggles to pull out of its worst ever recession, a presidential aide quoted by Reuters said. The government collected BRL46.8bn, divided evenly between fines and taxes, during the amnesty for Brazilians who held undeclared assets abroad.

Mexico’s Central Bank lifted its key lending rate by 50bp to 5.25% to help anchor inflation expectations and steady the peso currency, which has fallen 10% since the US election results were announced.

The highly controversial introduction of bond notes in Zimbabwe will threaten FDI in the country, the Zimbabwean Diaspora Network in North America has warned. FDI in Zimbabwe dropped by 23% last year, according to the firm, and risks sinking even lower on the back of liquidity concerns exacerbated by the notes' introduction.

The Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) successfully raised A$75mn (US$56mn) through its debut kangaroo bond, and the third in Latin America so far. The 4.42% November 2026 notes priced at par, in line with guidance at AS+180bp.

Indonesia's Central Bank, Bank Indonesia (BI), maintained its benchmark interest rate at 4.75% citing escalating global uncertainty following the result of the US elections.

Qatar's largest insurer, Qatar Insurance Co. (QIC), plans to issue fresh benchmark-sized bonds to boost its capital reserves, according to Reuters.

Kuwaiti Finance Minister Anas al-Saleh said the country will issue US dollar-denominated bonds of up to US$9.6bn in between now and the end of Q1 2017, complementing an existing US$6.6bn debt programme already in place, to help finance the deficit. The country reported a deficit of US$15bn last year.

The UAE arm of Standard Chartered has reportedly cut 150 jobs amid a slowdown in the region's banking sector, with more workforce reduction measures planned before year end. The move follows plans announced earlier this year to shed 15,000 jobs at the firm, globally.

Ukrainian citizens have been granted visa-free travel by the EU, in a signal of support for a war-torn country worried that Donald Trump’s incoming US administration may weaken western sanctions against Russia. Ambassadors for EU member states agreed to grant short-term travel privileges to Ukrainians on the condition that the scheme can be suspended in an emergency.

Emerging markets debt trading and investment industry trade association EMTA said emerging market CDS volumes rose 31% in the third quarter of this year, driven mainly by purchases against Turkey, Mexico, South Africa and Brazil.

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