BAKU, Azerbaijan, July 2
The Uzbek authorities plan this year to issue Eurobonds in national currency in the equivalent of $500 million in the domestic market, Uzbek Deputy Minister of Finance Odilbek Isakov said in an interview with Bloomberg, Trend reports referring to kun.uz news website.
“Uzbekistan’s need for borrowing will increase due to the coronavirus pandemic,” Isakov said. “The decision of entering the debt market will depend on the market and the budget deficit as of the first half of the year.”
“Eurobonds denominated in sums in the equivalent of $500 million may be placed this year and the same amount next year,” the deputy minister added. “This will be done based on the budget needs.”
Isakov also added that Uzbekistan may issue its first Islamic bonds (sukuk - the Islamic equivalent of bonds) next year to finance the renewable energy projects.
The deputy minister pointed out that an increase in the share of public debt denominated in sums from 11.5 percent to 50 percent during 10 years is "ambitious but achievable".
Uzbekistan for the first time in its history placed two tranches of Eurobonds worth $1 billion in 2019. The maturity dates of debt bonds are set for February 2024 and 2029.
Then, investor demand exceeded the placement volume by almost four times and amounted to about $3.8 billion from about 150 investors.