Axiata's Sri Lankan unit gets nod to issue $388 mln Islamic bonds

KUALA LUMPUR, April 1 Mon Apr 1, 2013 7:43am EDT

KUALA LUMPUR, April 1 (Reuters) - Dialog Axiata, the Sri Lankan unit of Asian mobile services group Axiata Group Bhd, has won approval to sell up to 1.2 billion Malaysian ringgit ($388 million) of Islamic bonds, Axiata said on Monday.

Just four days ago Sri Lanka-listed mobile phone operator Dialog Axiata won the country's first mobile 4G LTE spectrum with a 3.2 billion Sri Lanka rupees ($25 million) bid.

Axiata Group is Asia's third-largest mobile services group outside Japan and China by subscribers.

Dialog Axiata's 15-year long Islamic bond, or sukuk, programme was approved by the Securities Commission Malaysia.

"Proceeds raised from the issuance of sukuk shall be utilised for Dialog's funding investments, operational expenses, capital expenditure and working capital, refinancing of existing debts and other corporate and funding purposes, provided that any such utilisation shall be in compliance with Shariah principles," Axiata said in a stock exchange filing on Monday.

HSBC Amanah Malaysia Bhd and Maybank Investment Bank have been appointed as the joint principal advisers, joint lead arrangers and joint lead managers for the sukuk programme. ($1 = 3.0965 Malaysian ringgits) (Reporting By Yantoultra Ngui; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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