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Zain Saudi refinances $600m loan

RIYADH, August 16, 2016

Telecommunications operator Zain Saudi Arabia said on Tuesday it would save SR175 million ($46.7 million) by using a Chinese bank to refinance a SR2.25 billion ($600 million) loan that it had secured just two months ago.

The new, $600-million loan was signed with Industrial and Commercial Bank of China; it has a two-year maturity with an option to extend by one additional year. The company said the savings on the new loan would come from better terms and the conversion of Saudi riyals to US dollars.

In early June, Zain Saudi had signed a SR2.25 billion loan refinancing with four local banks: Arab National Bank, Banque Saudi Fransi, Gulf International Bank and Samba Financial Group.

ICBC, China's largest bank by assets, has been expanding aggressively in the Gulf, where it does not face the same liquidity pressures as local rivals, which have been grappling with slowing deposit growth due to low oil prices.

In June, ICBC lent $1.5 billion to state-controlled utility Saudi Electricity Co.  -Reuters

Tags: China | zain saudi | refinance |

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