Latham & Watkins Advises on the Establishment of the UAE Federal Government’s GMTN Programme and Debut US$4 Billion Bond Issuance

Landmark transaction represents the UAE’s debut federal sovereign bond offering.

October 20, 2021

Latham & Watkins has advised the arrangers and dealers in relation to the establishment of a Global Medium Term Note Programme by the Federal Government of the United Arab Emirates, acting through the Ministry of Finance (the Federal Government), and the joint lead managers in relation to the US$4 billion notes issuance by the Federal Government. The notes were issued across three tranches: US$1 billion 2.000% notes due 2031, US$1 billion 2.875% notes due 2041, and US$2 billion 3.250% Formosa notes due 2061. 

The landmark transaction marks the debut federal bond issuance by the United Arab Emirates. The proceeds of the issuance will be used by the Federal Government for domestic budgetary purposes in and/or for the purpose of investment by the Emirates Investment Authority, in accordance with the Federal Government’s public debt strategy. 

The Notes were rated Aa2 by Moody’s and AA- by Fitch. The 10-year and 20-year Notes were listed on the London Stock Exchange’s main market, while the 40-year Formosa notes were dual-listed on the London Stock Exchange’s main market and the Taipei Exchange (TPEx). The Notes were offered to qualified institutional buyers in the US in reliance on Rule 144A under the US Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the Securities Act) and to investors outside the United States in reliance on Regulation S under the Securities Act.  

With respect to the issuance of the 10-year and 20-year notes, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, BofA Securities, Citigroup, Emirates NBD Capital, First Abu Dhabi Bank, HSBC, J.P. Morgan, Mashreqbank, and Standard Chartered Bank acted as joint lead managers. With respect to the issuance of the 40-year Formosa notes, Citibank Taiwan Limited, HSBC Bank (Taiwan) Limited, J.P. Morgan Securities (Taiwan) Limited and Standard Chartered Bank Taiwan Ltd acted as joint lead managers, while Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, BofA Securities, Emirates NBD Capital, First Abu Dhabi Bank, and Mashreqbank acted as structuring agents. 

Latham advised on English law, US law, and UAE law matters with a team led by Dubai partner Nomaan Raja and counsel Basil Al-Jafari. New York partner Bora Bozkurt and associate Ted Gkoo advised on US tax matters.

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