A Riyal denominated Sukuk has been issued by the Saudi International Petrochemical Company. The company announced the successful completion of the issuance amounting to SAR 1.0 bn on June 16, 2016. The Sukuk was priced at 235 bps over six months SAIBOR for tenor of five years maturing on June 16, 2021. Riyadh Capital and NCB Capital helped to arrange the private issuance.
In the hard currency space, the Commercial Bank of Qatar issued a Eurobond which achieved the tightest spread for a MENA financial institution this year, conventional or Sukuk.
Whilst the issuance was not a Sukuk, demand for bond indicates strong investor appetite, a good sign of market demand which is likely to be tested with several large planned issuances post Ramadan. Most eagerly anticipated is a potential sovereign issuance by Saudi Arabia, as well as by Aramco, the Saudi national oil giant.
Conyers advised DP World on the recent establishment of a sukuk program comprising up to US$3 billion of sukuk certificates to be listed on the Nasdaq Dubai, as well as the successful first drawdown of US$1.2 billion thereunder. Linklaters advised the joint lead managers and bookrunners, who included Citigroup, Dubai Islamic Bank, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Barclays, Emirates NBD, First Gulf Bank, J.P. Morgan Securities, National Bank of Abu Dhabi and Société Générale. Fawaz Elmalki and Oliver J. Simpson of Conyers’ Dubai office advised on the matter.
Abu Dhabi's Al Hilal Bank acquired $225MM RegS floating rate note Sukuk at 3mL+160bps under its $2.5 billion existing Trust Certificate Issuance Program. This trade marks the return to senior unsecured dollar Sukuk market since 2013 by an Abu Dhabi financial institution. CEO of Al Hilal Bank, Khaled Abdulla Alkhoori, said this was the first Islamic private placement in the UAE. The bank aims to work towards raising funding for medium term to enhance its funding profile.
Dubai’s Meydan Group has obtained Dhs 1bn ($272m) of Islamic financing partly through an issue of Islamic bonds and partly from a term financing facility. The money will help to strengthen Meydan’s capital structure, diversify its investor base and support new projects. Despite the regional economic slowdown Dubai is continuing to invest heavily in its tourism and real estate industries. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank coordinated and structured Meydan’s financing. Three other UAE banks – Al Hilal Bank, Sharjah Islamic Bank and Ajman Bank – were also involved.
Abu Dhabi government-owned Al Hilal Bank has raised $225 million by privately placing Islamic bonds. The issue, maturing in January 2019, was priced at the three-month London interbank offered rate plus 160 basis points. It was the first unsecured U.S. dollar sukuk issue by an Abu Dhabi bank since 2013. CEO Khaled Abdulla Alkhoori said the bank aims to work towards raising funding for the medium term to enhance their funding profile. The issue was the second tranche of the bank's $2.5 billion notes programme. In the first tranche, Al Hilal raised $500 million of five-year debt in 2013.
Emirates Islamic Bank has made two donations of Dh2 million and Dh50,000 to inmates of Dubai Police’s Punitive and Correctional Establishments. The Dh2 million was allocated from the Zakat accounts to help inmates who are incarcerated for financial issues. The other donation, that of Dh50,000, was allocated from the charity accounts to pay for plane tickets for needy inmates.
Dubai Islamic Bank is opening subscriptions on Tuesday for a 3.16 bn dirham ($860.3 mn) rights issue. The bank is offering 988.4 mn new shares to shareholders in total, with subscription open on the basis of one new share for every four currently held. Shares are priced at 3.2 dirhams each, a substantial discount to Monday's closing share price of 4.95 dirhams. DIB is the latest bank in the Gulf to replenish reserves after a period of strong lending growth. At the end of March DIB's total capital adequacy ratio stood at 15.6%, above the UAE's regulatory minimum of 12%.
Abu Dhabi Financial Group (ADFG) and Bahrain’s GFH Financial Group are jointly setting up an Islamic bank in Abu Dhabi’s new financial free zone with initial capital of $100 mn. ADFG's CEO Jassim Al Seddiqi said the bank will open very soon, it will be run as a commercial bank accepting offshore deposits and dealing in dollars. ADFG has recently raised its stake in GFH to 11.74% from 10% and the two firms are seeking other joint opportunities for the future.
Emirates Islamic Bank has launched the sale of $750 million in sukuk with five years duration. Pricing for the instrument has been set at 220 basis points over midswaps after attracting orders from investors worth more than $2.2 billion. The pricing is tighter than the 225 bps over the same benchmark indicated earlier in the day, and well inside initial guidance of the 240 bps area. The issuance was arranged by Standard Chartered, Al Hilal Bank, Bank ABC, Dubai Islamic Bank, HSBC, Maybank and Noor Bank.
Noor Bank has successfully priced its debut perpetual $500 million Tier 1 capital issuance, the first issuance from UAE in 2016. The final pricing came on the back of global roadshows across Middle East, Asia and Europe with an order book crossing over $1 billion. Citi and Standard Chartered were the joint global coordinators for the issuance, whilst Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates NBD Capital, First Gulf Bank, Noor Bank and Sharjah Islamic Bank acted as the joint lead managers for the issuance.
Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB) has successfully repaid a $400 million sukuk. The sukuk had been raised in May 2011 under challenging market circumstances. The funds raised under the sukuk were used for general corporate purposes and business expansion of SIB. The bank currently has two sukuks of $500 million outstanding which are set to mature in 2018 and 2020 respectively.
Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies (EIBFS) hosted a workshop on the current and future landscape of the Shari’ah-compliant asset management sector for the UAE’s senior-level bankers and financial experts. The workshop invited Islamic finance specialists from EIBFS, Dubai Islamic Bank, Noor Bank and Mashreq Capital. Asset management has evolved significantly over the last few years. In 2015, Assets under Management (AUM) of total global Islamic funds grew 5.3% from the previous year while the number of funds increased by 11%.
The first China-UAE Conference on Islamic Banking and Finance is organized between May 24-25, 2016 in Beijing, China. The Conference will serve as an international platform for experts, decision-makers, scholars, academicians and other Islamic Banking and Finance stakeholders to exchange knowledge and best practices. The debuting conference aims to capitalize on the strategic ties between the UAE and China to identify challenges and opportunities related to Islamic finance.
Qatar National Bank is investigating a security breach that appears to have exposed sensitive personal data for what could be hundreds of customers, including employees of international broadcaster Al-Jazeera and potentially senior government officials. Four people identified in the files and reached by The Associated Press confirmed their personal information was authentic. It is unclear if all of the data posted online originated from the bank itself. The bank said it was coordinating with the concerned parties to investigate the matter and offered its assurance that there would be no financial impact for its clients or the bank.
Hundreds of readers have written to The National to share their financial woes, following a series of articles in the Money section about worrying levels of personal debt in the UAE. The reason why UAE residents are building up such alarming liabilities is the lack of knowledge about the sky-high credit card interest rates in the country. According to a recent Compareit4me.com survey, about two-thirds of credit card holders are unaware of their card’s interest rate.
Organised by the International Centre of Islamic Economy and the Dubai Airport Freezone Authority, the event is part of efforts to encourage innovation and creativity in the development of new products as key additions to the international Islamic economy. The two-day event will be held in conjunction with UAE Innovation Week which was launched by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in line with of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, upon declaring 2015 as the ‘Year of Innovation’. The international platform is poised to attract more than 300 participants including top-notch financial and economic experts, decision makers and representatives from official, supervisory, regulatory, legislative and executive entities to share the latest innovative ideas related to Islamic economic sectors.
In a joint press conference with the World Islamic Banking Conference, Ernest & Young highlighted part of its World Islamic Banking Competitiveness Report 2015-2016 in Manama. “The growth of the Islamic banking industry in the GCC, specifically in Saudi Arabia, in the past few years can be attributed to the increased public sector spending on the back of oil revenues. It will be interesting to see how banks are affected as governments draw their reserves from the banking sector to narrow the gap on budget deficits due to the drop in the global oil price,” said Muzammil Kasbati, Director, Global Islamic Banking Centre at Ernest & Young.
According to the statement, the GCC Islamic banking profit pool crossed $12 billion, with expectations that the sector will continue to grow amid regional economic uncertainty. Further, the statement says that nine core markets are currently the growth engines for the global Islamic finance industry. Ernest & Young identified a group of 40 banks across these nine core markets that are “systemically important” to the future progress of the industry.
Low-cost carrier flydubai is in talks with its advisers for a potential bond issuance. Earlier reports citing unnamed sources, Dubai’s low cost airline had mandated seven banks — Credit Agricole, Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates NBD, HSBC, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Noor Bank and Standard Chartered — to arrange a potential debut sukuk issue
Sukuk issuance and investing is expanding outside of the Islamic world. The asset holders range from sovereign wealth funds and high-net-worth-individuals in the Arab Gulf, to retail investors in other Muslim majority countries such as Turkey, Pakistan and Indonesia. According to Moody’s Investors Service, Malaysia at present dominates the sukuk market when it comes to both sovereign and corporate issuance. Other major issuers include the governments of Indonesia and Gulf states including Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. The overall outstanding amount of sukuk will probably reach around $115 billion this year.
The Pakistani unit of Bahrain's Al Baraka Banking Group has raised 2 billion rupees ($19.5 million) via the country's first issuance of subordinated sukuk, or Islamic bonds. The seven-year private placement is the first to be issued by an Islamic bank in Pakistan, according to Abdullah Ghaffar, head of investment banking at Al Baraka Bank Pakistan.
Due to the phasing in of Basel III global banking standards around the globe, several Islamic banks have issued subordinated instruments in order to raise capital, including those in Turkey, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.