The first corporate green bond in Francophone West Africa was oversubscribed, financing an environment and social friendly real-estate project.
Statistics on African local currency bond markets from African Financial Markets Initiative (AFMI) annual report 2017: Total outstanding amount African bonds and bills up 13% to $413bn in 2017, more than 80% of the total comes from 5 countries.
African Development Bank (AfDB) and Mauritius Commercial Bank Group (MCB) have launched the African Domestic Bond Fund (ADBF), a pioneer exchange-traded fund (ETF) accessible to investors through listing on 18 September on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius.
The International Finance Corporation continues its programme of helping develop African debt markets by launching the first bond by a non-resident issuer in Namibia. It raised NAD 180 million (about $12m) which it will use for private sector development.
Nigeria’s booming fixed interest and currency securities exchange FMDQ OTC Plc (“over-the-counter”) recorded market turnover of NGN93.9 trillion ($471.7 billion) for the 8 months to 31 August.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange went live trading government and corporate bonds on an automated trading system, marking another step into Africa for South Africa’s financial software development company Securities Trading & Technology Pty (STT).
Global investors offered a record $8.8bn and Kenya issued $0.5bn in a 5-year Eurobond at 5.875% and $1.5bn of a 10-year Eurobond at 6.875%.
Ethiopia, Africa’s fifth biggest economy, is thinking of a debut Eurobond, after it received its first international credit ratings on 9 May: it got B from Fitch and B/B from Standard & Poors.
Tanzania is planning to issue a first Eurobond of up to $1 billion, but the issue could be delayed until after June, according to Reuters.
This Thursday is the African Debt Capital Markets Summit 2013, at Bloomberg in London, organized by IC Publications. The conference brings top international speakers including a minister and a central bank governor on topics such as developing and deepening Africa’s debt markets and institutional changes needed.
“South Africa’s established and efficient debt capital market is a key competitive advantage for South African firms” writes Barry Martin, joint head of debt capital markets at Rand Merchant Bank. Corporate debt issued in the first quarter of 2013 was R6.1 billion ($612 million).
African countries (apart from South Africa) are set to place $7 billion of debt this year, buoyed by low interest rates and a huge global appetite. It is more than the previous 5 years combined and African capital markets are feeling the boom.
The first Eurobond issued by Rwanda, due to mature in May 2023, raised $400 million at 6.875% and the money will go to start generating hydroelectricity by December with further expansion in June 2014 and also pay for airline expansion and a convention centre.
The International Finance Corporation plans to issue a $50 million (NGN 8 billion) local-currency “Naija” bond in Nigeria to support the domestic capital markets and increase access to local-currency finance. IFC bonds are rated triple-A by Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poor’s.
World investors and debt-rating agencies should rethink criteria for evaluating political and other risk. “Risk is up for developed markets (DM) and down for Emerging Markets (EM)” was a key message from a Thomson Reuters conference in London on 18 September.
Zambia went to the global market yesterday (13 September) with its first eurobond, a USD750 million 10-year bond priced at a 5.625%. It will be used to fund its budget and invest in infrastructure and the issue highlights “great appetite” for African credit.
Rwanda’s Savings and Credit Cooperatives (known as SACCOs) are being encouraged to take more interest in investing into the capital market including bonds and equities. They are estimated to hold deposits worth over RWF15 billion (US$24.7 million).
A new securities exchange in Lusaka, BaDEx (Bonds and Derivatives Exchange Zambia) is installing tried-and-tested bond and derivative trading software from South Africa’s STT Software, which supplies the JSE, and says it will be ready to launch operations next month, May 2012. BaDEx trading platforms will include spot and derivative trading in bonds, currency, commodities (such as derivatives on metals and silo certificates on the spot market) and a variety of other derivatives including agricultural commodities, precious metals, equity and energy.
2012 could be an active year for African bonds and particularly eurobonds, judging by the 5.5 times oversubscription for the Namibia’s debut $500 million, 10-year Eurobond. However, timing and terms of issues will be crucial in the turbulent markets.
Developing Africa’s securities exchanges is critical for the continent’s development, with capital markets standing between huge demand for capital for growth and huge demand to invest. The key issues are on the agenda of The 15th Annual African Securities Exchange Association conference (in Marrakesh, Morocco), hosted by Casablanca Stock Exchange, 12-13 December.