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Malaysia plans 19 bond sales to fund development projects

31/12/2009 06:00:00 AM GMT 

Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia plans to conduct 19 bond sales next year to help raise funds for development projects and fin-ance its budget deficit.

The government will sell notes maturing in 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2020 and 2030, comprising both conventional and Islamic securities, according to a sale calendar published by Bank Negara Malaysia on its website. The central bank, which conducts debt auctions on behalf of the treasury, didn't provide details on the amount to be raised at each debt sale.

Malaysia raised a record 88.5 billion ringgit (Dh95.42 billion) this year, a 48 per cent increase from 2008 and the most since records began in 1991.

It will step up "fiscal discipline" next year to help narrow the deficit to 40.5 billion ringgit, or 5.6 per cent of gross domestic product, the finance ministry said in October.

Prime Minister Najib Razak has unveiled 67-billion ringgit of stimulus measures in the past year and the central bank has maintained its overnight policy rate at 2 per cent since February to help the nation climb out of its recession. The government also raised 5 billion ringgit from the sale of 2012 bonds to retail investors in May.

The finance ministry estimated the budget shortfall for 2009 at 51.1 billion ringgit, or 7.4 per cent of GDP, the highest proportion since 1987. Islamic debt, or sukuk, pays a profit rate to investors from an underlying asset instead of interest, which is prohibited by Sharia.

Source: Gulf News
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