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Sixteen foreign banks have expressed interest in handling the Lithuanian government's planned 400 million euro Eurobond issue, the Finance Ministry said on Jan. 24.
Rima Kaziliuniene, an aide to Finance Minister Dalia Grybauskaite, said the ministry sent out invitations to 18 foreign financial institutions to offer terms for the placement of the government's new long-term Eurobond and has received answers from 16 banks.
"Such an active response to our invitation shows that markets regard us as interesting, reliable and solid partners," said Asta Ungulaitiene, the Finance Ministry's secretary.
Foreign investors' interest in Lithuanian securities has been encouraged by the country's strong economic growth over recent years and its steadily increasing reputation in international markets, she said.
Ungulaitiene also noted the successful placement of Lithuania's 400 million euro 10-year bond issue last April and the country's markedly improved debt ratings.
The international rating agencies Fitch, Standard & Poor's and Moody's upgraded Lithuania's debt ratings last year.
According to the statement, the Finance Ministry hopes to choose a lead manager in early February.
The ministry plans to launch the new Eurobond issue in late February or early March. The proceeds will be used to redeem earlier issues, refinance earlier loans and cover the budget deficit.