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Oman taps debt markets to keep economy afloat and state firms in check

Concern over the sultanate’s current account and other balances are being reflected in an upturn in sovereign and corporate debt issuance. The most eye-catching deal of the Omani summer was a $3.6bn loan agreed by the government with a group of unnamed Chinese financial institutions. Finalised in July and unveiled in August, the five-year unsecured loan was only marketed to Chinese lenders; it is something of a departure for the sultanate, which has tended to rely on financial aid from rich regional allies such as Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE, or loans from western lenders.

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