• Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Lagos issues N134.8bn long-tenure bonds

Sanwo-Olu hails A/Court’s affirmation of his election victory

Lagos State on Tuesday issued a 10-year bond and a seven-year bond valued at N115 billion at 15.25 percent and N19.815 billion at 14.7 percent, respectively. The total amounted to N134.8 billion.

The bonds are part of the state government’s initiative to raise funds from the capital market to finance the delivery of key infrastructure projects.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu presided over a ceremony where the state government, issuing parties, and trustees signed transaction instruments for the first sets of allotments in the N1 trillion Debt and Hybrid Issuance Programme.

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The 10-year tenure bond is a product of its fourth issuance under the Debt and Hybrid Issuance Programme duly approved by the State House of Assembly, while the seven-year tenure bond valued at N19.815 billion at 14.7 percent Fixed Return Forward-Ijarah Lease Sukuk, billed to mature by 2030, marks the first shariah-compliant instrument to be issued by the state government.

Moyosore Onigbanjo, SAN, Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, read out the resolutions of the State Executive Council adopting the issuance of the two bonds before the signing of the instruments by the parties.

Sanwo-Olu described the development as “another significant milestone” recorded by his administration in delivering the required infrastructure that would fast-track economic growth across the state. The two bond issuances, he said, would provide the impetus for his government to further drive its development agenda in critical sectors of the state.

He said: “As we renew our mandate in the coming days, these two issuances will provide the impetus for my administration to further drive our THEMES agenda. Proceeds from the bond and sukuk will enable various ministries, departments, and agencies, including the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Office of Drainage and Water Resources, the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Waterfront and Infrastructure, to execute respective projects that have been pre-inspected by the Securities and Exchange Commission and issuing houses.

“Some of the projects include the massive overhaul of 33 public schools in the Itolu area of Ajegunle and ongoing road infrastructure projects on the Lekki-Epe corridor. A significant part of the funds will be used for drainage works and sea and lagoon embarkment to protect the environment from climate issues. In health, we are using part of the proceeds to kick off our Infectious Disease Research Centre at the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba because of the experience we had with coronavirus. We are building agricultural capabilities to feed our people. Part of the proceeds are going to all the activation we have been doing around constructing major food markets.”

Sanwo-Olu said the proceeds from the issuances would not only drive infrastructure development but also stimulate economic growth, foster job creation, and enhance the quality of life for the residents.

The Governor thanked the investors’ community for believing in the “tremendous opportunities” in Lagos, reiterating his commitment to discipline and transparency in the deployment of the funds.

Speaking at the event, Rabiu Olowo, the Finance Commissioner, said the Sanwo-Olu administration has made standout financing decisions that will continue to enhance the state’s ability to deliver needed infrastructure.

Olowo said the issuances demonstrated Lagos’ status as a “Category A Issuer” and a proof of the trust that investors had in the state’s ability to judiciously deploy proceeds to deliver on the government’s projects.

He said: “The transaction reflects the resilience and depth of the domestic debt capital market, which Lagos has been able to rely on in our quest to build a Greater Lagos for generations to come. Aside from democratic process, the validity of a government’s credibility is established when discerning, shrewd business people and investors willingly put their money to support the development agenda of a state.”

A lead issuing house, Chapel Hill Denham, said Lagos raised the N134 billion bond within 14 days of issuance, saying the oversubscription was an indication of investors’ confidence in the state.

Its Managing Director, Kemi Awodeyin, said the issuing house remained disciplined and committed to Lagos in its drive to improve economic growth.

Hajara Adeola of Lotus Financial Services, the lead issuing house that facilitated the Sukuk instrument, praised the Lagos Government for building faith in non-interest finance.