Middle East

Kuwait Finance House sells $750 million in AT1 sukuk

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DUBAI, June 23 (Reuters) - Kuwait Finance House (KFH.KW) sold $750 million in Additional Tier 1 sukuk, or Islamic bonds, on Wednesday that will be non-callable for 5-1/2 years, a document reviewed by Reuters showed.

The sukuk were sold at 3.6%, which was tightened from initial price guidance of around 4% after more than $1.9 billion in orders, the document from a bank on the deal showed.

KFH Capital, Standard Chartered (STAN.L), Boubyan Bank (BOUK.KW), Dubai Islamic Bank (DISB.DU), Dukhan Bank, Emirates NBD Capital (ENBD.DU), First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB.AD) and Mizuho Securities (8411.T) arranged the deal.

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The deal was the latest in a series of international debt sales from the hydrocarbon-rich Gulf, as banks, companies and governments take advantage of low rates to bolster finances hurt by last year's oil price crash and the COVID-19 crisis.

Additional Tier 1 (AT1) bonds are designed to be perpetual, but issuers can redeem or "call" them after a specified period.

Ahli United Bank (BKME.KW) this month sold $600 million in AT1 sukuk at 3.875%, also non-callable for 5-1/2 years.

National Bank of Kuwait, the country's largest, and Boubyan Bank also issued bonds this year, as did Kuwait's Equate Petrochemical Company.

Kuwait faced a liquidity crunch last year after an historic dive in oil prices and the COVID-19 pandemic. It is in a standoff between successive governments and parliaments over a law that would raise its debt ceiling and allow the government to tap international debt markets.

Its parliament approved the 2021-22 state budget on Tuesday, but failed to quell a rift between government and opposition that has blocked economic reforms and hampered decision-making by the Gulf state's sovereign wealth fund. read more

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Reporting by Yousef Saba; Editing by Andrew Heavens

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