Business News of Tuesday, 27 November 2018
Source: Freda Bediako-Puni
Ghana, on Friday, 23rd November 2018 made another historic feat as the country seeks to deepen its economic fortunes in the global arena. The London Stock Exchange witnessed the listing of the first local currency bond from Ghana and West Africa.
The listing of a GHC 45million, approximately ten million USD guaranteed corporate bond by Quantum Terminals Group (QTG) was witnessed by Rt. Hon. Harriett Baldwin, the Minister of State for Africa, His Excellency Papa Owusu-Ankomah, Ghana’s High Commissioner and the Executive Director of Quantum Terminals Group, Mr. Emmanuel Egyei-Mensah.
Until this milestone, QTG had listed the bond on the Ghana Stock Exchange in May 2018 as the first corporate and first 10-year tenor bond issued by a non-financial institution on the Ghana Fixed Income Market. The bond has a 75 percent partial credit guarantee from GurantCo, the guarantee arm of the Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG), for the benefit of local pension fund investors that have subscribed to the issue.
Quantum Terminals Group (QTG), is a leading energy infrastructure developer in Ghana, which was guaranteed by GurantCo, a UK based company, mainly to support the operations of its Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) storage business in Ghana.
The core aim of the bond given its innovative nature coupled with its ability to strengthen capital markets in Ghana is inextricably connected to GurantCo’s mission to offer support to the development of capital markets and infrastructure in emerging and frontier markets in order to assist with the alleviation of poverty. Consequently, the bond issuance is expected to have significant demonstration effect in Ghana.
In a brief statement, Rt. Hon. Harriett Baldwin, Minister of State for Africa, mentioned that, at the Commonwealth Summit in April, which was held in London, the Secretary of State announced the UK’s support to assist African countries raise debt in their local currencies. She added that the listing of the corporate bond by QTG was a testament to that commitment.
She expressed delight at the listing of the first ever Ghanaian Cedi bond on the London Stock Exchange. Further, she attested to the fact that Ghana was one of the fastest growing economies in the world and added that there were significant opportunities for the UK and Ghana to deepen bilateral relations and economic partnership. She concluded by stating that the event was an important milestone which would support development in Ghana and provide opportunities for UK based investors for the mutual benefit of both countries.
His Excellency Papa Owusu-Ankomah, in his short address indicated that the listing of the corporate bond by QTG was unprecedented given that it was the first ever local currency to be listed on the London Stock exchange from Ghana and West Africa for that matter. He also underlined the fact that a lot more entrepreneurs would be motivated to go global with their businesses with the sole aim of reducing Ghana’s debt.
The High Commissioner underscored the fact that the listing of the bond was a demonstration of the strong bilateral relations between Ghana and the UK. He further mentioned that the listing of the bond signals the shift from Ghana’s dependence on Aid to trade with the UK and this he added was in consonance with the President’s vision of moving Ghana beyond Aid. His Excellency pap Owusu-Ankomah congratulated Quantum Terminals for the bold step taken in listing its bond on LSE and expressed appreciation to GurantCo for the facilitatory role it played in the day’s historic moment.
The Executive Director of Quantum Terminals Mr. Emmanuel Egyei-Mensah informed the gathering that the success of the bond was a proof of investor interest in building exposure in Ghana which his company was looking to expand for the benefit of other entrepreneurs in Ghana through the London listing. He paid tribute to GurantCo for its role in facilitating the first ever local currency corporate bond transaction. He added that it was a great example of how development finance institutions should partner with the private sector.
Mr. Egyei-Mensah was of the considered view that the London listing of the bond would signal a new beginning for corporate bodies accessing capital markets in Ghana.