Israel Ports Development & Assets Company today completed a NIS 2.5 billion bond issue, with demand totaling NIS 5.1 billion. The issue was composed of three bond series: two index-linked series and one unlinked shekel series. Most of Israel's investment institutions participated in the auction.
Ports Development & Assets obtained ratings of AAA from S&P Maalot and Aa1 from Midroog for the offering. The high rating was based primarily on the company's close link to the state, with Midroog writing, "The dependence between the company and the state is very high, and special support for the company is very likely." Midroog added that a loosening of the connection between the state and the company was "liable to lead to a significant downgrade."
Ports Development & Assets was founded in July 2004, following structural change and reform in the ports by the Israeli government. The company began operating in February 2005 as the development and assets company of the Haifa, Ashdod, and Eilat seaports.
According to the company's charter, it holds land, mainly on the premises of these three ports; provides land on the ports' premises for use by other concerns; plans and develops the ports; and promotes competition "between concerns operating in the ports."
Minister of Transport Yisrael Katz stated that with the completion of the bond issue, "A significant milestone was completed today in the vision of the new ports and the opening of the ports to competition. The amount raised will aid Port Development & Assets to build the southern port and the Haifa Bay port without money from the state budget, as I previously promised and as the company has undertaken. This measure will serve continued development of the future ports whose construction is designed to provide a solution for the economy's needs and to fulfill the latent potential of Israel's strategic location."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com>www.globes-online.com - on May 7, 2018
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