The fixed-income market is showing significant growth in sovereign debt levels — mostly in sub-Saharan Africa. In the recent past, several African governments have issued a flurry of foreign currency bonds, including Kenya, Nigeria, SA, Mozambique, Ivory Coast, Namibia, Rwanda, Tanzania and Angola. Between 2010 and 2015 these countries raised $20bn in fixed-income securities. Notwithstanding the softening of commodity prices and African countries reaching debt-service thresholds beyond which they should not borrow, these countries continue to pile on debt. In September 2017, for example, SA issued a pair of dollar bonds worth $2.5bn, and in February 2018 Kenya issued a $2bn long-dated bond. Those transactions were highly oversubscribed. As such, global market discussion is that a number of other African countries are buoyed by the obvious investor appetite and will be issuing hard currency bonds in 2018 to finance foreign currency commitments. The stated purposes of these bond issua...

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