KUALA LUMPUR Jan 9 Malaysia's biggest
toll expressway company said it will issue $9.7 billion in
Islamic bonds in what would be the world's largest sukuk
The 30.6 billion ringgit sukuk from Projek Lebuhraya
Usahasama Berhad, or PLUS Berhad, is scheduled for Jan. 12. It
follows the privatisation of PLUS Expressways Berhad, one of
Malaysia's largest privatisations.
Proceeds from the bond will be used in part to finance
the purchase of five toll concessions, and also for working
capital and general funding requirements, the company said in a
statement dated Jan. 8.
The sukuk repayment period ranges from five years to 27
years, and the weighted average yield is about 5 percent.
CIMB Investment Bank was the deal's financial
adviser, sole principal adviser, sole lead arranger and joint
lead manager. AmInvestment Bank, Maybank and
RHB Investment Bank were the other joint lead
A source said the bonds would be placed out to the four
The company said the sukuk was rated AAA by the
Malaysian Rating Corporation Board, or MARC.
Shareholders of PLUS Expressways approved a takeover
bid last year from Malaysia's UEM Group Bhd and the Employees
Provident Fund. UEM Group is an investment holding company
wholly owned by Malaysian investment arm Khazanah Nasional
"The successful issuance and strong demand for our sukuk
demonstrates the depth and liquidity of the local market," UEM
Group chief executive officer Izzaddin Idris said.
Globally, Islamic bond issuance rose to $23.3 billion last
year, from $13.9 billion in 2010, according to Thomson Reuters
Indonesia and Saudi Arabia are among sovereign issuers that
are planning sukuk offerings in early 2012.
But the Turkish unit of Bahrain's Albaraka Banking Group
said in December it had postponed a planned issue of
Islamic bonds, citing unfavourable yields.
(Reporting by Anuradha Raghu and Emily Kaiser; Editing by Kim