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Gov't commences DDE in respect of Ghana’s U.S.$-denominated domestic bonds

The Government of Ghana has announced that it is inviting Eligible Holders to exchange approximately US$809 million of its U.S.$-denominated domestic notes and bonds specified for a package of new bonds to be issued by the Republic.


According to Gov't, the terms and conditions of the Invitation are described in the exchange memorandum dated July 14.


In a communique issued by the Finance Ministry, it said "On 5th December 2022, we launched an invitation to exchange the GHS-denominated notes and bonds of the Republic, E.S.L.A. Plc, and Daakye Trust Plc for new bonds of the Republic, which exchange successfully concluded on 21st February 2023"

The communique also noted that approximately 85% of holders eligible to participate in the exchange tendered their bonds and notes for a total of GHS82,994,510,128 tendered and exchanged.


While those results represent a significant step towards achieving the Government’s objectives in respect of its public debt, the domestic debt exchange programme is not yet completed.

 

"Today, we are launching a similar invitation to exchange, this time in respect of the U.S.$ dollar-denominated bonds issued domestically by the Republic of Ghana and governed by Ghanaian law. For the avoidance of any doubt, this Invitation is separate from the invitation to exchange launched in December 2022 and concluded in February 2023, and does not involve any GHS-denominated securities"

 

It stressed that reasons justifying the invitation to exchange launched in December 2022 remain valid today and continue to justify the domestic debt exchange programme.


"The successful completion of this programme will allow our country to restore sound public finance and sustainable debt levels and kickstart economic growth following the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the global economic shock created by the war in Ukraine"


"This Invitation to Exchange is an arrangement through which holders of Eligible Bonds will submit their holdings of Eligible Bonds governed by Ghanaian law and denominated in U.S.$ dollars (U.S.$) for new benchmark Government of Ghana bonds denominated in U.S.$, with the same aggregate principal amount (plus applicable capitalized accrued and unpaid interest), and which have in the aggregate a lower average coupon and extended average maturity than the Eligible Bonds"

The Finance Ministry hinted that the successful completion of this domestic debt exchange is a critical component of both the debt reduction programme and the programme discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).


It added it will contribute to unlocking the support of the international community and will allow Ghana to achieve its debt targets.


As such, the Government noted that it is calling for the full participation of all holders of Eligible Bonds.

 


"The Government expects overwhelming support for this exchange. The alternative would be a far worse economic crisis, with protracted closure from international markets (including imported goods and services) and further domestic economic instability both for the real economy and the financial sector. It would also mean depleted fiscal resources to support the vulnerable."

On the summary of the invitation, it disclosed that the Invitation was available only to registered holders of Eligible Bonds (“Eligible Holders”).

"Eligible Holders tendering their Eligible Bonds pursuant to the Invitation will receive New Bonds of the Republic on the terms and subject to the conditions described in the Exchange Memorandum. All offers to exchange Eligible Bonds made by Eligible Holders (an “Offer” or “Exchange Instruction”) are irrevocable (subject to withdrawal rights under certain limited circumstances). By tendering their Eligible Bonds, Eligible Holders represent and warrant that such Eligible Bonds constitute all the Eligible Bonds owned by them and consent to the blocking by the Central Securities Depository (CSD) of any attempt to transfer them prior to the Settlement Date (as defined below) or the termination of the Invitation by the Republic"


"Eligible Holders who deliver valid Offers at or prior to the Expiration Date that are accepted by the Republic will receive on the Settlement Date (as defined below) in exchange for their Eligible Bonds accepted by the Republic, the same aggregate principal amount distributed across new bonds due in 2027 (the “New 2027 Bond”) and 2028 (the “New 2028 Bond”, collectively, the “New Bonds”) in the following proportions.


Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith

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