Singapore seeks to raise issuance limit for govt bonds

Singapore is seeking parliamentary approval to raise the ceiling for issuing government bonds to S$690 billion, an increase of S$200 billion, until 2022.

The bulk of the increased amount is expected to be issued to the state Central Provident Fund (CPF) for its investment needs, Indranee Rajah, senior minister of state for law and finance, said in parliament.

Singapore, which has the top AAA-rating and has assets well in excess of its liabilities, does not issue bonds for government spending.

The rest would be mainly for the central bank to raise the issuance of "Singapore Government Securities", or government bonds, to improve the efficiency and liquidity of the city-state's debt markets, and the issuance of savings bonds to individual investors.

"The increase in issuance limit for government securities has no impact on the government's fiscal position. All the borrowings will be invested and not spent," she said.

The outstanding amount of securities stood at S$429 billion as at March 2016, and the government was on track to fully utilize the current limit by the end of 2017.

There was therefore a need to raise the limit to cater to the issuance needs for government securities for the next five years beyond 2017, Rajah said.