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Manila Water raises $500M from sale of sustainability bonds

Manila Water Co. Inc. has issued $500 million in sustainability bonds, which it described as the single largest green bond issue by a listed private water utility in Asia.

The Ayala unit’s debut in the international capital markets also represented the first Asean Sustainability Bond by a corporate issuer out of the Philippines.

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Manila Water said in a statement the offering attracted orders of about $1.96 billion from 85 “quality institutional investors.” They were priced at 4.5 percent, 25 basis points less than initial tag.

The noncall, five-year notes carried a fixed coupon of 4.375 percent, payable every six months.

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Four-fifths of the orders were allocated to investors in Asia while the rest were earmarked to others in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

“We are very grateful for the strong market response, which reflects the investors’ confidence in Manila Water’s fundamental strength and stability as a leading Asian player in the water and wastewater industry. The issuance of this Sustainability Bond is fully aligned with our commitment to create shared value toward achieving the targets of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, especially SDG 6, which focuses on clean water and sanitation,” Manila Water president Jose Rene D. Almendras said

Ma. Cecilia T. Cruzabra, the company’s chief finance officer and treasurer, said the issuance would support financing of important water and wastewater infrastructure projects in the communities in their concession area, which is the eastern part of Metro Manila and Rizal province.

These projects “have been agreed with our regulators and will provide stable and predictable cashflows,” Cruzabra said. “The issuance will also allow us to refinance our maturing obligations, further diversify our funding sources and lengthen our maturity profile.”

Projects that stand to benefit are related to Manila Water’s efforts on sustainable water and wastewater management, terrestrial and aquatic biodiversity conservation, and affordable basic infrastructure.

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TAGS: manila water co. inc., sustainability bonds
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