Ghana Weighs Panda to Samurai as $2.5 Billion Bond Sale Nears

(Bloomberg) -- Ghana is considering selling bonds from China to Japan as the country prepares to issue as much as $2.5 billion in foreign-currency debt this year.

Last month, lawmakers in the West African nation gave approval for the Finance Ministry to proceed with a debt sale. Ghana will use $1 billion to help meet its 2018 budget and the remainder to refinance dollar bonds of as much as $1.5 billion should it be able to sell the securities at a cheaper rate.

Apart from selling dollar debt, Ghana is weighing an issuance of Islamic securities, so-called Panda bonds in mainland China and Samurai notes in Japan, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta said Wednesday in an interview at a conference in the capital, Accra.

“We have sukuk, Samurai and Panda bonds in the mix for the $2.5 billion envelope,” Ofori-Atta said. The ministry will visit Japan next week to explore “the possibility of issuing a Samurai bond as we continue investigating the other instruments,” he said.

The world’s second-largest cocoa grower has appointed Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co, Bank of America Corp. and Standard Chartered Plc as head arrangers to market an upcoming sale of Eurobonds, people familiar with the matter said last month.

The Eurobond sale will begin at the end of April, Ofori-Atta said on Wednesday.

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