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Malaysia meets European demand

Issuer: Government of Malaysia Amount: €650m Type of issue: Eurobond Date of issue: November 16

Complaints about lack of transparency on the Malaysian government's award of the mandate for its euro-denominated bond issue have been dismissed by participants in the deal.

Though formal invitations to bid were not circulated, the issue was "no big secret", says a Deutsche Bank source, who adds: "Everyone had ample time to respond."

Deutsche Bank and Barclays Capital were joint lead managers, while co-managers were ABN Amro Bank, CIMB bank, Dresdner Kleinwort Benson, HSBC, JP Morgan and Schroder Salomon Smith Barney.

It was Malaysia's first foray into the Euromarket since a now-matured Deutschmark floating-rate issue in the mid-1980s, and was apparently almost two times oversubscribed.

The government was aiming to sell its story to European investors, hence despite strong interest from Asia, priority was given to Europe and most orders from there were met.

"The majority went to European investors, although there were quite a few orders from Asia but the issuer's whole objective was not to place it back to Asia. We could not fulfil both 100%, but there has got to be a bit of give and take to some extent," says one banker.

"Given it was the first euro transaction for a sovereign out of Asia this year it went very well," he adds.

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