NDX - a done deal!

Published: Friday | February 22, 2013 Comments 0

Edmond Campbell, Senior Staff Reporter

THE GOVERNMENT'S National Debt Exchange (NDX) programme received overwhelming support from bondholders with more than 97 per cent of the players in the market declaring that they have come on board.

Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips told The Gleaner yesterday that the figure is expected to surge past 97 per cent as ministry officials tallied the numbers late into the evening.

The first Jamaica Debt Exchange (JDX) programme in 2010 had a take-up of 99.7 per cent.

Late last evening, Information Minister Sandrea Falconer told The Gleaner that the details of the NDX would be divulged today.

The Portia Simspon Miller administration is also expected to share with International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials today the results of its crucial NDX programme following yesterday's deadline for bondholders to participate in the exercise.

Up to late last evening, officials from the Ministry of Finance were feverishly tallying the number of bondholders who have declared their participation in the Government's NDX programme.

NDX crucial to IMF deal

The successful implementation of the new debt exchange programme is a critical factor in the Government's quest to ink a deal with the IMF.

When The Gleaner contacted Pamela McLaren, head of the Debt Management Unit in the Ministry of Finance late yesterday, she reported that work was still being done to tally the number of bondholders who have come on board.

She said the result of the sum total of participation in the NDX would be submitted to Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips.

In the absence of the NDX, the Government would have had to pay out today J$119.2 billion to bondholders, which represented J$89.2 billion for principal on maturing bonds and J$30 billion in interest payment

However, with the onset of the NDX, the Government will roll the principal due into the new NDX bonds.

Under the NDX, the 12.5 per cent fixed-rate Jamaica dollar bond will be exchanged for a new fixed-rate bond paying interest of 7.25 per cent and maturing in 2016. Additionally, the maturing 6.75 per cent US-denominated bond will be exchanged for a new bond paying interest of 5.25 per cent and maturing in 2020.

edmond.campbell@gleanerjm.com

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