Orders for Saudi Aramco’s debut international bonds topped 85 billion dollars (about N30.5 trillion).
Sources familiar with the matter said it was a record-breaking vote of market confidence for the oil giant.
Saudi Aramco is the Saudi Arabian national petroleum and natural gas company based in Dhahram, Saudi Arabia.
The company was expected to raise around 10 billion dollars from the deal, which would be priced later on Tuesday.
The sources said that the demand for the paper was the largest for emerging markets bonds since an order-book value of more than 52 billion dollars for Qatar’s 12 billion dollars’ bonds last year.
According to the sources, Aramco’s bonds have attracted demand from a wide range of investors.
They added that the state-owned Aramco’s vast profits would put its debt rating – if unconstrained by its sovereign links – in the same league as independent oil majors like Exxon Mobil and Shell.
The issue follows on the heels of Aramco’s planned 69.1 billion dollars acquisition of a 70 per cent stake in petrochemicals firm: Saudi Basic Industries Corp., (SABIC) from the Saudi sovereign wealth fund.
Many analysts had described it as a transfer of government’s funds aimed at boosting the Saudi Crown Prince’s economic agenda.
“This bond is being issued for two reasons: to establish Aramco’s status as an independent corporate identity and to enable the transfer of wealth out of the company,” said Marcus Chenevix, analyst, MENA and global political research at TS Lombard.
Aramco, however, said that the bond issue was not linked to the SABIC acquisition and many see it as a relationship building exercise with international investors ahead of its planned initial public offering, scheduled for last year and then postponed to 2021.