Dr M confident of Malaysia’s credit rating despite second Samurai Bond issuance

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad shakes hands with Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng in Parliament October 11, 2019, after the tabling of Budget 2020. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad shakes hands with Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng in Parliament October 11, 2019, after the tabling of Budget 2020. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 11 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is not worried that the nation’s credit rating will drop, seeing that the government is spending a lot of money for next year’s Budget while issuing a second Samurai Bond.

Speaking during a press conference today, Dr Mahathir expressed his confidence in Malaysia’s credit ratings as there are parties offering funds for Putrajaya to borrow.

“Obviously, our credit rating is very good because people coming forward to offer funds for us to borrow, but of course, we have to borrow the best offer and Samurai Bonds will attract an interest rate of 0.5 per cent,” said Dr Mahathir.

However, he dismissed the possibility of China’s Panda Bond for the time being.

The government is expected to issue new Samurai Bonds early next year. The issuance size will be determined only after further discussions with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC).

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the trust built by the prime minister and the Japanese government via the JBIC has once again seen it offer to guarantee an additional tranche of Samurai Bonds.

“The bond offer is with an even lower interest rate of less than 0.5 per cent, compared to the previous rate of 0.63 per cent,” Lim said earlier, when tabling Budget 2020, themed, “Driving Growth and Equitable Outcomes Towards Shared Prosperity” in Parliament here today.

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