Ipic pays interest on Malaysian bonds amid dispute

Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund paid interest on 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) bonds amid a dispute between the two on who was required to meet the debt obligations. 1MDB’s bonds surged.

1MDB defaulted on another coupon payment, the International Petroleum Investment Company (Ipic) said in a filing on the London Stock Exchange. Ipic paid US$52.4 million on 1MDB’s 5.99 per cent dollar-denominated notes that it had guaranteed, it said. 1MDB did not immediately comment on the Ipic statement.

The two funds have been locked in a dispute that spilt over to repayments on 1MDB bonds. That led to a default by 1MDB in April, hitting the reputation of the Malaysian government, which is its sole shareholder. Ipic subsequently made the $50m interest payment, and said yesterday that it was asking 1MDB and Malaysia for a reimbursement.

“You might find the Ipic-1MDB issues annoying but they are just playing hardball with each other,” said Luc D’Hooge, head of emerging-market bonds in Zur­ich at Vontobel Asset Management, which oversees $22 billion of fixed-income assets. He holds 1MDB’s 5.99 per cent notes. “I was not at all concerned.”

The $1.75bn 5.99 per cent bonds due in May 2022 climbed 3 cents to 103.8 cents on the dollar to yield 5.25 per cent in Hong Kong, according to prices compiled by Bloomberg. Ipic bonds with similar maturity yielded 3.03 per cent.


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