September 13, 2017 / 12:53 PM / 10 months ago

Slovenia to buy back, exchange U.S. dollar-denominated bonds

LJUBLJANA, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Slovenia offered on Wednesday to buy back or exchange about $400 million of dollar-denominated bonds to cut the cost of its debt.

The Slovenian Finance Ministry said it will buy back bonds maturing in 2022 and 2023 with coupons of 5.5 and 5.85 percent. The total outstanding value of the bonds is $1.6 billion.

The bonds can be repurchased or exchanged until Sept. 19 for a dollar-denominated bond which expires in 2024 and has a coupon of 5.25 percent, the ministry said in a statement.

Slovenia, which narrowly avoided an international bailout of its banks in 2013, hopes to reduce its debt to 77 percent of GDP in 2017 from about 80 percent last year and gradually bring it to 60 percent, the maximum allowed for euro zone members.

In the years following the onset of the global financial crisis, Slovenia’s public debt almost quadrupled to 83 percent of GDP in 2015 from 21.8 percent in 2008. (Reporting by Marja Novak; editing by Alexander Smith)

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