Saudi Telecom hires banks for debut dollar sukuk

The sukuk — the size of which will depend on market conditions and demand — are part of the Saudi Telecom’s $5 billion sukuk program. (Reuters)
Updated 25 April 2019

Saudi Telecom hires banks for debut dollar sukuk

  • Saudi corporates are increasingly expected to tap the international debt markets
  • Saudi Arabia’s biggest telecommunications operator has applied to list the sukuk with the Irish Stock Exchange

DUBAI: State-run Saudi Telecom has hired six banks to arrange its first issue of US dollar-denominated sukuk, or Islamic bonds, the company said on Thursday.
Saudi corporates are increasingly expected to tap the international debt markets following the inclusion of Saudi government and quasi-government debt in key JP Morgan emerging market bond indexes this year.
The recent jumbo inaugural bond by state-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco has also attracted new interest in Saudi borrowers, and has provided a fresh pricing benchmark for future issues by state-backed entities.
HSBC, JPMorgan, Standard Chartered, Samba, First Abu Dhabi Bank, and KFH have been hired as lead banks for the planned deal.
Saudi Arabia’s biggest telecommunications operator said it had applied to list the sukuk with the Irish Stock Exchange.
The sukuk — the size of which will depend on market conditions and demand — are part of the company’s $5 billion sukuk program, established last month to back general corporate purposes.


Saudi finance minister reassures public on taxes

Updated 10 December 2019

Saudi finance minister reassures public on taxes

  • Mohammed Al-Jadaan: There will be no more fees and taxes until after the financial, economic and social impacts have been considered carefully
  • The government expects to generate about SR203 billion in taxes this year – more than 20.5 percent higher than the previous year

RIYADH: Saudi finance minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan pledged that there would be no more taxes or fees introduced in the Kingdom until the social and economic impact of such a move had been fully reviewed.

He was speaking at the 2020 Budget Meeting Sessions, organized by the Ministry of Finance and held in Riyadh on Tuesday, where a number of ministers and senior officials gathered following the publication of the budget on Monday evening.

“There will be no more fees and taxes until after the financial, economic and social impacts have been considered carefully, especially in terms of economic competitiveness,” said Al-Jadaan.

The government expects to generate about SR203 billion in taxes this year – more than 20.5 percent higher than the previous year and more than 10 percent higher than the expected budget for this year. 

Most of that increase has come from taxes on goods and services which rose substantially as a result of the improvement in economic activity over the year.

The reassurances from the minister come as the Saudi budget deficit is estimated to widen to about SR187 billion, next year, or about 6.4 percent of GDP.