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CBO to issue RO100m in bonds



Muscat: The Central Bank of Oman (CBO) has announced the new issue of government development bonds. The size of the new issue is fixed at RO100 million with a maturity period of five years and will carry a coupon rate of 3.25 per cent. The issue will be open for subscription from November 18 till 29, 2012 while the auction will be held on Monday, December 3, 2012.

The issue settlement date will be on December 5, 2012. Interest on the new bonds will be paid on June 5 and December 5 every year until maturity date on December 5, 2017. Investors may apply for these bonds through the competitive bidding process only. Investors may submit bids through licenced banks operating in the Sultanate.

Investors with application of RO1 million and above can, if they so wish submit their bids directly to CBO after getting them endorsed from their banks. Prospectus and application forms can be obtained from any licenced banks operating in the Sultanate.

The Bonds are direct and unconditional obligations of the Government of the Sultanate. The Bonds can be used as a collateral security to obtain loans from any local licensed bank. The Bonds can also be traded at prevailing market rates through the Muscat Securities Market (MSM).

The details of the Bonds allotted will be recorded in the register maintained by the Muscat Clearing & Depositary Company (MCDC). Investors must provide same bank account details registered with MCDC. The 41st issue is offered to all investors of any nationality residing in the Sultanate of Oman: it is not open for subscription to investors residing aboard.

Robust growth

During the year 2012 the balance sheet of commercial bank's strengthened further due to the robust growth in deposits and credit. Statistics issued by the Central Bank of Oman (CBO) pointed out that total assets of commercial banks increased by 17.6 per cent to RO20,229.9 million in September 2012 compared to RO17,203.6 million in September 2011.

Total credit expanded by 17.4 per cent to RO13,954.6 million at the end of September 2012 from RO11,882.2 million a year ago. While credit to Government declined by 26 per cent at the end of September 2012, credit to public enterprises and private sector increased by 26.7 per cent and 17.3 per cent, respectively.

Commercial banks' overall investments in securities marginally increased by one per cent to RO2,225.6 million in September 2012 from RO2,204.4 million a year ago. Of the total outstanding investments, commercial banks' investments in CBO CDs stood at RO1,016 million in September 2012.

Investments in Government Development Bonds (GDBs) increased by 51.9 per cent to RO432.7 million in September 2012 compared to its level last year. Commercial banks' investments in foreign securities increased to RO588.8 million in September 2012 from RO337.1 million a year ago.

On the liabilities side of the balance sheet, total deposits (rial Omani plus foreign currency deposits) of commercial banks increased by 17.2 per cent to RO13,801.7 million in September 2012 from RO11,772.4 million in September 2011. Government deposits with commercial banks increased by 26.3 per cent to RO3,756 million, while deposits of public enterprises increased by 9.5 per cent to RO992.9 million during the same period.

Private sector deposits with commercial banks increased by 13.6 per cent to RO8,838.6 million in September 2012 from RO7,779.2 million a year ago. The provisional net profits of commercial banks stood higher at RO230.8 million at the end of September 2012 compared to RO193.5 million at the end of September 2011.

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