HSBC Holdings, the biggest manager of bond sales in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, expects debt issues in the region to raise as much as $40 billion in 2014, almost matching last year’s total.
Sales will start to catch up with 2013 volumes in the next two months, Mustafa Aziz Ata, head of Middle East and North Africa debt capital markets at the London-based bank, said in an interview in Dubai yesterday. Volume dropped 35 percent to $11.4 billion in 2014 compared with the same period a year ago.
“The market is going to pick up fairly quickly,” Aziz Ata said. “By mid-year we are going to be at the same levels, slightly lower” than last year, with between $35 billion and $40 billion by the end of 2014. Government-related companies and banks will lead sales, including some new issuers, he said.
National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC, the biggest lender in the United Arab Emirates, said last week it may sell a bond in 2014 as appetite for issuance improves. The decline this year came as companies sought to reduce debt and banks accumulated surplus cash, allowing them to offer cheaper loans, Aziz Ata said.
Bond sales in the GCC raised $41 billion last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.