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    Serbia mulling new Eurobond issue in 2020 - Erste

    Author Radomir Ralev
    Serbia mulling new Eurobond issue in 2020 - Erste Gena96/Shutterstock.com

    BELGRADE (Serbia), January 30 (SeeNews) - Serbia is considering the possibility for a new Eurobond issue of up to 2 billion euro ($2.2 billion) in 2020, more likely in the second half of the year, Erste Group said on Thursday.

    After the successful placement of 1 billion euro of Treasury notes in mid-2019, followed by the reopening of the issue for a further 550 million euro of government securities, Serbia is now considering another Eurobond issue this year, the Austria-based banking group said in an e-mailed statement.

    However, as the government's attention is now turning to the upcoming parliamentary elections, no Serbian activity on the international capital market is expected before the second half of 2020, Erste said.

    The government may postpone the issuance of new Eurobonds to the end of 2020 or the beginning of next year after a new assessment of the country's credit rating, the bank noted.

    "The country targets an investment-grade rating which would create the opportunity to include a new group of investors. Moreover, this would entail greater confidence in investing in Serbia, lower and more stable level of returns, greater liquidity of investment instruments, a narrower spread in pricing, and new longer-term sovereign debt issues," Erste added.

    Last month, Serbian finance minister Sinisa Mali said the country plans to borrow 2 billion euro ($2.2 billion) through the sale of government securities on the global markets in 2020. The borrowing through the issuance of domestic government debt is envisaged at about 312 billion dinars, Mali noted.

    ​In November, Serbia sold 550 million euro worth of ten-year Treasury notes listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE). The T-notes were added to a 1.0 billion euro issue of government securities first auctioned in June and were sold at an average yield of 1.25%, down by 37 basis points.

    Serbia should hold regular parliamentary and local elections in the period between March 22 and April 5, 2020, president Aleksandar Vucic said in November.

    ($ = 0.907816 euro)

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