July 29, 2015 / 4:18 PM / 5 years ago

Ivory Coast to issue debut 150 billion CFA sukuk in 2015

BONDOUKOU, Ivory Coast, July 29 (Reuters) - Ivory Coast will launch the first tranche of a previously announced Islamic bond programme this year, a government spokesman said on Wednesday.

The local currency sukuk bond will be for 150 billion CFA francs ($252 million).

“A programme has been established and a roadshow will be held in the last quarter of 2015,” Bruno Kone told journalists following a cabinet meeting in the town of Bondoukou. “We are hoping to raise the funds before the end of the year.”

In April, Ivory Coast, the world’s top cocoa producer and Francophone West Africa’s economic powerhouse, announced that it would conduct a 300 billion CFA franc ($504 million) Islamic bond programme in two phases between 2015 and 2020.

African countries are increasingly tapping the sukuk market for funding to take advantage of rising demand for Islamic paper among investors in the Middle East and southeast Asia. ($1 = 594.9200 CFA francs) (Reporting by Loucoumane Coulibaly; Writing by Bate Felix; Editing by Daniel Flynn)

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