MegaProject 111: Slovakia R1 Expressway set for refinancing with project bond
- Bayerische Landesbank (Bayern LB)
- BNP Paribas
- Crédit Agricole
- Deutsche Bank
- Dexia Crédit Local
- European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
- Erste Bank
- HSBC Bank
- ING Bank
- KfW IPEX Bank
- Meridiam Infrastructure
- NIBC Bank
- Société Générale
- Standard & Poor's
- VINCI - VINCI Concessions
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On October 23, the Slovakian government approved the re-financing of the R1 Expressway project between Nitra and Banská Bystrica. The project was built using the public-private partnership (PPP) model.
The original bank loan will be replaced with the issuing of a project bond with a maturity date set for 2039. Therefore, the overall volume of the issue will equal €1.25 billion. Twelve banks financed the project: BNP Paribas, BayernLB, BBVA, Calyon, Dexia, EBRD, Erste Bank, ING, KfW, Natixis, NIBC and Société Générale. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) advanced a senior loan of €250 million.
The re-financing was proposed by the concessionaire, Granvia (Vinci Concessions and Meridiam Infrastructure), and the approach drafted in co-operation with Deutsche Bank and HSBC. According to the former, preliminary testing showed that there is interest on the market in the bonds, the rating of which is estimated by Standard & Poor's agency at grade BBB+.
It might save the state a minimum of some €130 million or approximately €5 million in annual instalments, Transport Minister Ján Po?iatek said after the government session on October 23. The final savings will depend on the conditions of the bond subscription to be executed by the end of November.
As stated in tender documents, the resources saved from the refinancing will be divided between the Transport Ministry - 90 % - and Granvia - 10 %.
The construction of about 51 kilometres of E1 through the PPP cost almost €900 million. The first three sections of R1 within PPP, between Nitra and Tekovské Nemce, about 45 kilometres long, have been in operation since October 2011 and the northern bypass of Banská Bystrica 5.7 kilometres long since July 2012.