Qatar Considers Refinancing $10 Billion Debt Due Next Year

Qatar’s government has approached international banks to explore refinancing more than $10 billion in debt that comes due next year, Reuters reported. Officials at the Ministry of Finance are in early talks with international banks for a potential syndicated loan or bond sale. No final decision has been made, the people said. The government may decide to refinance part of the debt or even shelve the plan since the country has financial flexibility, they said. A spokesperson for Qatar’s Ministry of Finance said that the government didn’t have immediate plans to refinance debt. The ministry “is always in talks with banks to assess market conditions for possible debt issuance as part of our normal liability and fiscal management exercise,” the spokesperson added. Qatar, one of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas exporters, has about $11 billion in debt due in 2023, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Syndicated loan volumes in the Gulf region jumped to a record $113.5 billion in 2021, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, as sovereign and corporate issuers went on a fundraising spree to take advantage of easy financing conditions and cheap liquidity. Qatar’s government expects its fiscal deficit to reach 8.3 billion rials ($2.3 billion) this year at an assumed oil price averaging $55 a barrel. A recent run of gains has pushed crude above $90 a barrel for the first time since 2014. Read more.