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KIIFB To Raise Rs 5,000 Crore From Masala Bonds

In order to fund large and critical infrastructure projects in the state, Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) plans to raise Rs. 5,000 crore through Masala Bonds

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Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) plans to raise Rs 5,000 crore through Masala Bonds to fund large and critical infrastructure projects in the state. With a view to establishing its credit profile and market standing, KIIFB had also undertaken a detailed rating exercise through two international credit rating agencies - Standard and Poor’s and Fitch Ratings, the state agency said in a statement.

The ratings for KIIFB have been equalised with the rating agencies' assessment of the credit profile of the State of Kerala. "Both S&P and Fitch have assigned KIIFB a long term foreign currency rating of BB with stable outlook. The MTN Programme has also been rated BB with Stable outlook by both rating agencies," it said.

Kerala for its role as the guarantor to debt issuances of KIIFB has become the first state from India to secure a public international credit rating while KIIFB enjoys the unique distinction of being the first state government public sector enterprise from India to establish an MTN Programme for raising offshore bonds, it said.

S&P Global Ratings Wednesday assigned 'BB' long term rating to Kerala, reflecting its weak budgetary and debt metrics. This is the first time that S&P has assigned a local and regional government (LRG) rating in India, the agency said in a statement.

"We expect KIIFB to be able to raise Masala Bonds worth up to INR 50 Billion from global investors in one or more tranches in the upcoming months. This would provide KIIFB with an additional stream of capital to finance critical infrastructure projects in the State of Kerala," KIIFB Deputy Managing Director Sanjeev Kaushik said.

KIIFB will also try to tap the Middle East market given the strong connection with the State apart from the international finance centres like London, Singapore and Hong Kong, he added.