|Seasons Greetings from the Chalhoubs' in Beirut
|Seasons Greetings from the Chalhoubs' in Beirut - The Daily Star
Fransabank successfully completed the issue of its $60 million international certificate of deposits (CD), which is to mature in December 2007.
The five-year bonds carry a six-month coupon of 8.5 percent and will be listed on the Luxembourg International Stock Exchange.
"This constitutes the second phase of our $300 million international CD program, which we started in October 1997," said Adnan Qassar, chairman of Fransabank. "The primary subscription exceeded $100 million but we chose to accept only $60 million," he added. Qassar said he considered the event a benchmark for future bond issues, as the interest rates on CDs and deposits offered to the Lebanese market invariably exceed 9.5 percent and are issued for shorter terms.
International and local experts had considered Fransabank's project extremely ambitious in terms of cost.
"We are used to taking bold steps and overcoming challenges" Qassar said, "and we will continue to do so."
According to Qassar, the new fund will be used to finance investment, construction and development projects in the country. "Our success is a demonstration of the growing international trust in Lebanon, its banking sector and overall economy," Qassar concluded. "We should capitalize on the results of 'Paris II' to obtain better conditions in the future," he added.
Ara Alain Arzoumanian
The Daily Star