March 8, 2019 (LBO) – In possibly the most significant economic development since Sri Lanka’s constitutional crisis dealt a devastating blow to her economy, the nation has successfully tapped the international markets in a large sovereign bond offering.
According to a Reuters report, Sri Lanka has raised US$2.4bn in 5 and 10 year bonds, with bids topping US$7.5bn. Pricing was better than expected with a 6.85% yield for US$1bn in 5-year bonds and a 7.85% yield for US$1.4bn in 10 year bonds.
Analysts say that this successful bond offering will put a solid floor under the Sri Lanka Rupee (LKR) with expected inflows into local currency denominated bonds as a result. In the budget discussions officials suggested that they expected close to US$1bn of inflows in 2019.
With Sri Lanka’s successful tapping of international bond markets, questions about Sri Lanka’s ability to roll over its maturing debt will likely be put to rest, inspiring investor confidence.
The successful deal is also an international vote of confidence in the creditworthiness of Sri Lanka and its government headed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
The international bond markets were effectively closed to Sri Lanka during the constitutional crisis when the Prime Minister was illegally deposed and holed up in his official residence Temple Trees. Restoration of Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister has brought stability to Sri Lanka’s economy, despite significant damage sustained from its 50 day constitutional crisis.
See the full Reuters report here: