Opening of public call for corporate bonds in June

Source: Monday, 20.05.2024. 12:27
Illustration (Photo: Ralf Kleemann/
The selection of the legal and financial advisers, who will provide free advice to companies interested in issuing corporate bonds, is planned by the end of May, and the opening of the public call is planned for June already. The Ministry of Finance invites all companies which plan to take part in this program to contact them even before the deadline and carry out the consultations and preparations for entering the capital market, said Sasa Stevanovic, the state secretary of the Ministry of Finance, at the annual conference of the CFO Association of Serbia.

Also, the Ministry of Finance is planning a new place for the modern capital market, so the main institutions – the Belgrade Stock Exchange, the Securities Commission and the Central Securities Depository and Clearing House will find their new home at the Prokop business center from 2025.

Talking about the development of the capital market in Serbia, Stevanovic reminded that, in 2023, the consolidation of ownership had been completed with the acquisition of the shares of the Belgrade Stock Exchange (51.7%), a loan agreement had been signed with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for the project of the development of the capital market, securing support of EUR 20 million, among other things, for the corporate bonds program, and that there had also been activities toward the development of a new system of the Central Securities Depository and Clearing House and the Belgrade Stock Exchange.

In 2024, the Belgrade Stock Exchange was recapitalized by EUR 2 million by the Republic of Serbia, and the plan is to launch the Program for the Issuance of Corporate Bonds, as well as to implement new software of the Central Securities Depository and Clearing House and the Belgrade Stock Exchange.

Stevanovic pointed out that the development, that is, the improvement of the capital market was planned through new financial products. For 2024 and 2025, the plan includes the Program of Corporate Bonds, initial public offerings, the issuance of MREL bonds and activities of the Equity Fund.

According to him, two banks have already announced that they will issue MREL bonds by the end of the year, and the Equity Fund will put shares owned by it on the stock exchange. Among them are some less attractive shares, but also a certain number of shares of tobacco companies, which, according to the ministry’s opinion, should increase the turnover of the Belgrade Stock Exchange.

– The Program for the Issuance of Corporate Bonds encompasses several phases, from an analysis of preparedness, through a plan of improvement, to the issuance of the bonds itself. In the first part, the preparedness of the candidate for the issuance of bonds is analyzed, financial and legal counseling is provided and the documentation is reviewed and prepared for the next phase. The candidate is then prepared for the issuance of bonds and strategically advised, and finally, there is the issuance itself – clarified Stevanovic.

For 2025 and 2026, the launching of the Real Estate Investment Fund, ETFs, the development of digital property and the issuance of national bonds are planned.

– The public sector or the state will issue national bonds, maybe even the local self-government (they will be different from municipal bonds), for the financing of concrete local projects – the construction of a museum, a cultural or sport center, a pool… With the purchase of these securities, the citizens will be able to take part in the financing of projects and realize a profit, but also contribute to the overall goal, that is, the improvement of everyday life.

For 2026, a so-called one-stop shop is planned, which will connect all the participants in the capital market in one place, and in the meantime, during 2024, a new system of trading on the Belgrade Stock Exchange will be implemented, whereas the launching of a mobile app for trading in real time is planned for the first quarter of 2025.

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