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GDB Preparing $2.1 Billion In Bond Issues

Brings agency’s total bond issues for 2003 and 2004 to $8.4 billion


December 18, 2003
Copyright © 2003 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

The Government Development Bank (GDB), through its subsidiary the Housing Financing Authority, has closed on a $700 million bond issue to be used for the modernization program of the Public Housing Administration.

Additionally, the GDB is preparing nine other bond issues scheduled for next year, totaling approximately $2.1 billion, which will be used primarily for new and old government construction projects. So far this year, it has completed bond issues to the tune of $5.6 billion, bringing the total bond commitment for 2003 and 2004 to $8.4 billion.

The recently completed $700 million GDB / Housing Financing Authority bond issue, also known as Housing Capital Grant Financing, is considered the largest public housing bond issue ever approved by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). The city of Chicago had the previous largest issue at $300 million.

"These funds will allow us to start rehabilitation work on 8,250 units in 44 public housing complexes around the island," said Carlos G. Laboy, administrator of the Public Housing Administration. "Without the HUD-authorized bond issue, families would have to wait for about 10 years to see the improvements to their public housing infrastructure."

Another large issue for 2004 is the $570 million package being prepared for the Port of the Americas project. Other well-known projects waiting for the government’s bond financing are the convention center ($350 million) and the Puerto Rico Coliseum ($180 million). The GDB’s new headquarters, slated for construction in early 2004, will require a $100 million bond issue. The balance of the $2.1 billion will be used primarily to satisfy public corporations’ financing needs.

The $5.6 billion bond issue already completed in 2003 went to various public uses. Refunding or refinancing the government debt and the Highway & Transportation (HTA) Authority required some $1.7 billion each. The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority called for a $517 million bond issue and the HTA-Teodoro Moscoso Bridge for a $154 million issue.

The GDB was created in 1942 to safeguard the fiscal stability of Puerto Rico and ensure the island’s competitiveness in the global economy.

The GDB’s subsidiaries are the Puerto Rico Housing Financing Authority, Puerto Rico Development Fund, Puerto Rico Capital Fund, Puerto Rico Public Finance Corp., and Puerto Rico Tourism Development Fund. Its affiliates include the Puerto Rico Municipal Financing Agency; Puerto Rico Infrastructure Financing Authority; and Puerto Rico Industrial, Tourism, Educational, Medical & Environmental Control Facilities Financing Authority (Afica).

Government Development Bank

Projected bond issues

Transaction: Value (In millions) / Estimated Date

Garvee Bonds: $100 / 4Q 2003*

Portfolio A Restructuring: 60 / 4Q 2003*

Quality Zone Academy Bonds: 50 / 4Q 2003*

Port of the Americas: 570 / 2004

Public Buildings Authority: 400 / 2004

Convention Center: 350 / 2004

nfrastructure Financing Authority: 300 / 2004

Puerto Rico Coliseum: 180 / 2004

Government Development Bank Headquarters: 100 / 2004

Convention Center Hotel: Not Available / 2004

TOTAL: $2,110

*Likely to take place in 2004.

Source: Government Development Bank for P.R.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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