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Dubai World lenders to meet firm next week

Dubai World lenders to meet firm next week
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First Published: Wed, Dec 02 2009. 02 55 PM IST
Updated: Wed, Dec 02 2009. 02 55 PM IST
Abu Dhabi: Dubai World’s creditors have formed a committee comprising six banks that will meet with the troubled state-controlled conglomerate next week, a bank executive familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
The committee includes two United Arab Emirates banks (UAE) and four British banks -- Standard Chartered, HSBC, Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland.
“Emirates NBD and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank are (also) part of the creditors’ committee,” said the executive, who asked not to be identified.
“There is a meeting next week,” he told Reuters by telephone, without giving further details.
Emirates NBD and Abu Dhabi Commercial could not be immediately reached for comment during a holiday in the UAE. HSBC, Standard Chartered and RBS could also not be immediately reached for comment, while Lloyds declined to comment.
Dubai World asked creditors of two of its flagship firms for a standstill last week on debt worth billions of dollars as part of a restructuring plan.
Earlier this week, the conglomerate said it would restructure about $26 billion of debt owed by its main property firms, Nakheel and Limitless.
The most pressing issue facing Dubai World and debt holders is Nakheel’s $3.52 billion Islamic bond, which matures on 14 December.
The International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday that banks from Britain have the most exposure to the debt of Dubai World.
“It typically tends to be the case that those on the table are those who are most exposed - we see the committee as a proxy to who’s most exposed,” said an Asia-based banking analyst.
“The UAE banks will be under pressure next week to disclose their exposures.”
Moody’s said on Tuesday that possible multiple defaults related to Dubai World’s debt restructuring could lead to downgrades in UAE bank ratings, but international banks exposed to the conglomerate are unlikely to be affected.
The ratings agency estimated the Dubai government and its related entities have debt of $100 billion -- higher than the market estimate of around $80 billion.
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First Published: Wed, Dec 02 2009. 02 55 PM IST