The African Development Bank was selected in a poll of bond market players as the best issuer in 2020 of a COVID-19 bond for its $3 billion dollar-denominated Fight COVID-19 social bond issued on March 27, 2020.
The winners of the GobalCapital Bond Awards 2020 were announced on 30 September at a ceremony held virtually for the first time in 12 years. GlobalCapital is a leading source of information on global capital markets with coverage of all market segments.
“We are grateful for the market’s recognition of the Bank’s effort in responding quickly to the needs of the continent with its Fight COVID-19 Social Bond which is an important instrument in alleviating the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on African economies and lives. Thanks to the very strong support received by investors, we were able to provide an efficient response at a very challenging time while also catering to the needs of socially responsible investors looking for impactful investments,” said Ms. Bajabulile Swazi Tshabalala, the Bank’s Senior Vice President and Chief Finance Officer.
The Fight COVID-19 bond, floated on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange and significantly oversubscribed, was the world’s largest social bond at time of issuance. The Bank has since listed the bond on both the London Stock Exchange and Nasdaq. Bond proceeds, with a three-year maturity, will go to alleviate the impact of the pandemic on livelihoods and Africa’s economies.
“The primary debt capital markets’ response to the coronavirus crisis has been resilient and robust. Institutions all over the world from governments and multilateral development banks, to domestic lenders, to companies have raised vital financing to see them through this extraordinary period,” GlobalCapital noted in its winners’ announcement release.
The bond issue is part of a suite of interventions the Bank has rolled out to strengthen African countries’ responses to the health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes a COVID-19 Response Facility of up to $10 billion to provide flexible and emergency assistance to the Bank’s members to shore up their national budget, economies and livelihoods of their citizens.