RPT-Kazakh finmin says mulling $500 mln sukuk issue

ASTANA Thu May 19, 2011 4:37am EDT

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ASTANA May 19 (Reuters) - Kazakhstan is considering issuing sovereign sukuk worth at least $500 million, Finance Minister Bolat Zhamishev said on Thursday.

"We are looking to issue Islamic bonds in order to fix a benchmark, but the prospects for this will depend on the market," Zhamishev said on the sidelines of an economic conference in Astana.

"In order to fix a benchmark, below $500 million is not usually recommended... We are not going to rush." (Reporting by Robin Paxton; writing by Michael Winfrey)