MANAMA, March 13 Oman plans to issue a total of
about 200 million rials ($520 million) of conventional bonds and
sukuk in line with its budget financing needs, central bank
chief Hamood Sangour al-Zadjali said on Wednesday.
He did not specify the timing or other details, beyond
saying that the sukuk, denominated in rials, were likely to be
issued towards the end of 2013 or at the start of next year.
It would be Oman's first sovereign sukuk issue, as the
country is now launching an Islamic finance industry.
"We are talking with the government to issue sukuk because
this is also one of the important instruments to invest excess
liquidity. However, this will take some time," Zadjali told
reporters. "The government needs some time to structure these
sukuks to be in line with the Islamic sharia law."
He added, "There is no timetable set yet for the time being.
There will be a committee established in order to study this
matter and to see how this sukuk will be issued, because there
are some fundamental factors we need to put in - this will have
to be asset-based or asset-backed, the maturity of it. We are
new in this market."