(Adds details, context)
RIYADH, April 4 Saudi Arabia has mandated
investment banks to arrange the kingdom's first international
sukuk denominated in dollars, the finance ministry said.
The ministry appointed several local and international banks
to coordinate meetings with fixed-income investors that would
start on Sunday after which the sukuk would be issued "according
to capital market conditions," it said in a statement.
It provided no details on the size of the issue.
Riyadh is expected to sell up to $10 billion of sukuk with
an issue that could take place in the next few weeks, bankers
told Reuters last week.
The kingdom has started tapping international debt markets
to diversify its sources of finance and plug a huge budget
deficit caused by low oil prices.
Citi, HSBC and JP Morgan are global coordinators on the
planned issue. BNP Paribas and Deutsche Bank are also involved
with lead roles, and other banks might join the group of lead
managers, banking sources have said.
(Reporting by Reem Shamseddine; Writing by Marwa Rashad;
editing by John Stonestreet)