May 30, 2013 / 11:34 AM / 4 years ago

Morocco's AttijariWafa Bank to raise $500 mln in bond issue

Marrakesh, May 30 (Reuters) - Morocco's Attijariwafa Bank is preparing to raise $500 million via a foreign bond issue to finance projects, the bank said on Thursday.

"We have the approval of our general assembly, so we can go for $500 million at any time" Chief Executive Mohamed El Kettani told Reuters on the margins of the African Development Bank's annual meeting in Marrakesh.

"The management will decide for the moment, it's open" he added.

AttijartiWafa, committed in many heavy projects in Morocco as the renewable energy and developing aggressively in Africa, is seeking to reinforce its financial resources.

Earlier this month the bank, controlled by the royal family's investment holding company, finalized the purchase of 55 percent of the International Bank for Africa (BIA-Togo), and raised 1.25 billion dirhams ($146 million) in the domestic market.

In November last year Standard and Poor's revised its outlook on the bank to 'stable' from 'positive' but affirmed its 'BB/B' long- and short-term counterparty ratings.

SNI has said it will sell its stake in AttijartiWafa Bank to concentrate mostly on investments in renewable energy, mining, telecoms and tourism instead of a broader range of sectors spanning insurance to car imports, water and sugar refining.

"There are no negotiations, no news about that", El Kettani said. ($1=8.5746 Moroccan dirhams) (Reporting By Aziz El Yaakoubi; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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