Banco Nacional de Investimento, a Mozambican bank, has begun discussions with investors to restructure an $850 million bond issued by the state-owned tuna company, a government spokesman said.
The southern Africa nation wants to extend the repayment period and negotiate lower interest rates for the government-backed debt issued in 2013, Finance and Economy Minister Adriano Maleiane said in June.
“If we manage to extend the debt, the longer we can extend it, the better. If we can lower the interest rate, it’s better,” Finance and Economy Ministry spokesman Rogerio Nkomo said on Monday. “We have to negotiate first. That is the job that the BNI is doing. They’re talking to investors.”
Empresa Mocambicana de Atum SA, or Ematum, tapped the international capital markets to finance a fleet of fishing boats. The funds were also used to pay for patrol vessels, leading the government to take $500 million onto its own balance sheet as defense spending.
The government can accept or reject BNI’s recommendations for changing the terms of the debt, said Nkomo.
The yield on the September 2020 bonds rose 10 basis points to 9.96 percent Monday in the capital, Maputo.