The rising profile of the Nigerian capital markets got more boost yesterday as International Finance Corporation (IFC) declared its intention to float a five-year $50million (N7.788 billion) bonds.
Speaking on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in Lagos, Vice-President and Treasurer of IFC, Mr. Jingdong Hua, said the bonds, which is the first by a non-resident issuer in Nigeria’s domestic market, has been tagged Naija Bonds to represent the spirit of Nigerian people who are hardworking, confident and optimistic of the future.
According to him, the corporation was currently in the process of raising the funds, while actual listing on the Nigerian bourse would be will be in February.
Hau said: “The proceeds will be deployed first, for financing our pipeline projects when there are ready and also for the general funding purposes of IFC. This is a start of many more issues to come in the future.”
On the choice of Nigeria to issue the bonds, Hau said the Nigerian market was gathering momentum, and currently on the radar of many international investors.
“The timing actually works very well because in Nigeria the government bonds market has been functioning for a decade and the corporate market is starting to take shape. It is timely that JP Morgan and Barclays are including Nigeria bonds into their global capital market indices. With this, we are putting the Nigerian bonds market in the world capital market map. There is a strong indication of the emergence of Nigeria as a choice of destination for international investors. I hope IFC debut bonds issuance will add to the momentum and help accelerate the bonds market,” he said.
The IFC treasurer added that the bonds would offer domestic investors the opportunity to tap into the fixed income securities market.
Meanwhile, investors’ interest in equities surged further yesterday as the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index rallied 1.49 per cent to close at 31,446.22, indicating a year-to-date growth of 11.9 per cent.