RIYADH: Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), the UAE’s largest Islamic lender, sold a $1 billion sukuk, the first in the emirate since the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic broke out across the world, forcing much of region into lockdown.
The five-year Islamic bond has a profit rate of 2.95 percent and attracted strong investor interest, the bank said in a stock exchange filing.
The deal was priced after completing a global investor call, which was attended by several local, regional and international investors. The sukuk was oversubscribed by nearly 4.5 times, and attracted more than 170 investors.
DIB said almost half of the order book originated from outside the Middle East and North Africa region.
“Despite the challenging global environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are grateful for the positive response from the global investor community,” said CEO Adnan Chilwan.
The debt sale comes as several corporations and governments in the Gulf seek to bolster their finances to face the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and a historic slide in oil prices.
The sale comes just weeks after the emirate of Sharjah, the third-largest in the UAE, sold $1 billion in seven-year sukuk, or Islamic bonds.
The pandemic has increased funding pressures on governments and companies alike across the region.
Earlier this year S&P Global Ratings warned that the knock on effects of lower economic growth and oil prices could slow lending growth and increase the overall stock of problem assets across the Gulf economies.