Vietnam plans to sell more bonds abroad next year: report

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A man walks past the Hanoi Stock Exchange in Hanoi. Photo: Bloomberg A man walks past the Hanoi Stock Exchange in Hanoi. Photo: Bloomberg


The Ministry of Finance has advised the government to continue issuing more bonds next year to refinance existing debts and raise funds for long-term projects, local media reported.
Deputy Finance Minister Do Hoang Anh Tuan did not reveal how much the bonds are worth and whether the borrowings are denominated in US dollar, euro or another currency. 
He was quoted as saying that the plan will not affect Vietnam's public debt position, which will not exceed 65 percent of the country's gross domestic product by 2020 and beyond.
Vietnam's public debt-to-GDP ratio was estimated at 54.2 percent in 2013 and 60.3 percent last year.
According to Tuan, the upcoming bond issue will take advantage of falling borrowing costs, allowing the country to refinance existing loans. 
Vietnam's credit rating has improved recently, raised from B2 to B1 by Moody's and from BB- to B+ by Fitch, he noted.
The new bonds will also help fund long-term projects, replacing official development assistance funds, which became less cheap after Vietnam grew into a middle-income economy, the deputy minister said.
In November, Vietnam's government issued 10-year sovereign bonds worth US$1 billion in the global market for the first time in more than four years, at a yield of 4.8 percent.
The issue was a success, the finance ministry said in its last year end statement, noting that the government was able to refinance 54.4 percent of borrowings via bonds in 2005 and 25.4 percent of debts in 2010. 
Vietnam sold $1 billion of 10-year securities in 2010, with a yield of 6.75 percent. 

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