Felda in talks with Finance Ministry over RM2.5b sukuk to finance loan restructuring

The Felda Global Ventures logo is pictured at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur October 9, 2019. — Picture by Choo Choy May
The Felda Global Ventures logo is pictured at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur October 9, 2019. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, July 16 — Felda is in discussions with the Finance Ministry over the issuance of a government-guaranteed sukuk to finance the restructuring of its loans worth RM2.5 billion, the Dewan Rakyat heard today

This will be Felda’s second sukuk issuance after its first one in 2018 worth RM2 billion.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said the government has also formed a special task force chaired by Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar to identify the best way to ensure Felda’s financial self-reliance and sustainability for the benefit of the entire settler community.  

“This team has conducted engagement sessions with Felda’s board of directors, management team, FGV Holdings Bhd and various stakeholder groups for their views and feedback on how to resolve issues related to Felda,” he said.

The task force is expected to present its findings in August 2020, he said in reply to Datuk Jalaluddin Haji Alias (BN-Jelebu), who wanted to know the status of implementation of the findings in the Felda White Paper as of the second quarter of 2020.

Mustapa said the White Paper, tabled at the Dewan Rakyat on April 10 last year, outlines several short-, medium- and long-term strategies, including improving corporate governance, handling cash flow problems, and rationalisation of investment and interest.

“The implementation of all these strategies is supported by financial allocations including an injection of RM6.23 billion by the government for a period of four years,” he said.

The initiatives include a RM1 billion allocation to introduce a new model for managing settlers’ land, RM250 million to complete the construction of partially-completed homes for second-generation Felda settlers, RM480 million for an asset management scheme to replace cost of living loans and harvest advances, with the effective interest rates on these loans to be abolished at a cost of RM2 billion, and RM2.5 billion in government-guaranteed sukuk to finance the restructuring of Felda loans. — Bernama

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