August 20, 2014 / 11:02 AM / in 3 years

Dubai's Nakheel says repays all $2.15 bln bank debt four years early

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DUBAI, Aug 20 (Reuters) - Dubai property developer Nakheel is repaying all of its 7.9 billion dirhams ($2.15 billion) of bank debt as much as four years ahead of schedule, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

The final instalment of the debt was to have come due in March 2018. Nakheel originally announced in June that it would repay its outstanding debt to banks ahead of the timetable mandated by its restructuring plan.

The state-controlled developer will repay 31 banks 5.54 billion dirhams on Thursday, it said in Wednesday's statement. Of that amount, 3.45 billion dirhams would go to United Arab Emirates banks, with Emirates NBD and Dubai Islamic Bank the biggest recipients; the remaining 2.09 billion dirhams would be paid to foreign banks.

In addition, the company will make an interest payment of 129 million dirhams for the six months to Aug. 28.

In February this year, Nakheel repaid 2.35 billion dirhams of bank debt that was due to mature in September 2015.

Nakheel was pushed close to default and forced to restructure its debt after Dubai's debt crisis in 2008, but its finances have improved over the past couple of years as the emirate's property market has rebounded. (Reporting by Praveen Menon; Editing by Andrew Torchia)

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