RHB aims to participate in more global sukuk issuances

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 18): RHB Banking group is looking to participate in more global Sukuk issuances to support its clients’ requirements both domestically and on a global scale, according to Managing Director of RHB Islamic Bank, Ibrahim Hassan.

“With investors’ growing comfort with Islamic instruments, the increasing financing needs of some Muslim and non-Muslim countries as well as a desire for stronger investment links with the faster growing economies in the Gulf and Asia, will drive further growth in this sector,” Ibrahim said in a statement today.

“We believe there is significant appetite by investors interested in participating in Islamic investment products," he said, adding that increased international issuances offer issuers an alternative funding source.

"This will continue to attract investors to put cash to work in a fast-growing asset class, and will improve the depth and breadth of the sector,” he added.

On a separate matter, RHB has been making significant inroads into the international sukuk market, having successfully completed two significant global transactions recently.

The banking group has, through its subsidiary RHB Islamic Bank, co-managed the Hong Kong government's inaugural US$1 billion sukuk issuance, which is the world’s first US dollar-denominated sukuk originated by a AAA-rated government.

RHB's another subsidiary, RHB Investment Bank, meanwhile has become a joint lead manager and underwriter to the IDB Trust Services Ltd's (IDBTS) five-year US$1.5 billion sukuk issuance, under its US$10 billion sukuk programme.

IDBTS is a special-purpose vehicle established to raise fund for the Islamic Development Bank (IDB).

These transactions further reinforce RHB’s ability and expertise to successfully manage non-Ringgit global offerings in various market conditions, and position Malaysia to be the market leader in global sukuk issuance, said the bank.