Greece heralds bond issue as 'absolute success'

Greece Facing Uncertain Future After Rejecting EU Proposals

Greece has mandated BNP Paribas Citigroup Global Markets Deutsche Bank Goldman Sachs HSBC and Merrill Lynch

Greece is about to launch itself back on private borrowing markets, selling a five-year bond to replace existing debt.

Reuters reported that Greece had employed six banks - BNP Paribas, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and HSBC - to act as joint lead managers for a five-year euro bond "subject to market conditions".

"This choice is a significant step, part of Greece's strategy to regain viable and steady access to global markets", Tsipras's office said in a statement.

The return to the markets comes after months of tension over Greece's bailout programme has eased.

Greece now has no real need to draw money from the bond markets as it recently received renewed financial support at lower rates under its global bailout that should see it through until next year.

"Effectively the new issue is neutral as regards the debt sustainability of Greece", said Athens-based Eurobank economist Platon Monokroussos.

The IMF last week approved in principle a $1.8 billion standby loan arrangement for Greece, making a conditional commitment to help underpin the country's bailout program for the first time in two years.

Athens also took the step taking into consideration the International Monetary Fund's decision on July 20 to join the Greek bailout, as well as Moody's credit rating for Greece being upgraded to Caa2 on June 23 and Standard and Poor's upgrading of its outlook to positive on July 21, according to the government sources.

In a sign that the country is turning a corner the economy is projected to grow by 2.1% this year - after no growth at all in 2016.

This gave Athens the chance to test without major financial risks its credibility in the markets.

The Commissioner is to meet during the day with prime minister Alexis Tsipras.

Moscovici said Tuesday that debt relief could come once Greece successfully implements promised reforms and completes its past year under the bailout programme, although he said a decision on what measures to undertake could be made earlier.

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