Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board, the largest utility in Ireland–and one that was set up by an Act of the Irish government–is considering issuing a Sukuk (a Shariah-compliant bond).
This is no doubt designed to attract petrodollars from the Middle East, which increasingly requires Shariah-compliance, something that was not the case less than a generation ago.
Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board mulls Sukuk sale
The potential issue would make the Electricity Supply Board (ESB) the first non financial institution in Europe to tap the lucrative Sukuk market.
Kieran Donoghue, Head of the Irish Development Authority (IDA), told Reuters that the IDA is assisting the ESB with a potential Sukuk issue that might help the company raise $1.3 billion.
The ESB is understood to have hired Kuala Lumpur-based Amanie Advisors to advise on how best to access the market for Sukuk.
The ECB had reportedly applied to local regulators for permission to issue a Sukuk within the next 12 to 18 months.
Structuring of the Sukuk could begin as early as January, once the application is approved by Malaysia’s central bank. It might have multiple tranches denominated in currencies such as US dollars and Malaysian ringgit, according to a source cited by Reuters.