A $1.5 billion Abu Dhabi government bond was listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Market (ADX) on Wednesday, a first for the emirate which hopes others will follow the sovereign to build a market for listing and trading debt instruments.
The introduction of debt listing and trading has long been anticipated in the emirate – the largest and richest of the seven which make up the United Arab Emirates – as a way to expand the exchange’s activities and make it easier for local companies to sell debt instruments.
Developing a domestic debt market was a “national priority”, the UAE central bank governor said in November.
The Abu Dhabi Department of Finance (DoF) announced last year its intention to dual list the bond on ADX and the London Stock Exchange, where it has been listed since being sold in 2009, allowing investors to trade in the bond on both markets simultaneously.
“The dual listing of the bond will help to enhance the investment exposure of the local markets and to reinforce Abu Dhabi’s position as a regional and international financial centre able to attract investment and provide investors with diverse options in the securities and bond markets,” Mohammed al Hameli, director-general of DoF, said in a statement.
Transactions will be processed by National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) through its account at Euroclear, following an agreement signed in June.
Only one other instrument is listed on the ADX: a subordinated convertible note issued by NBAD.