EuroChem might re-enter ruble bond market this year
EuroChem, a major Russian fertilizer producer, does not rule out another ruble bond offering before the end of this year to refinance existing debt, EuroChem Group AG CFO Kuzma Marchuk told Interfax.
EuroChem has managed to reduce debt due in 2020 to $1 billion from $1.88 billion thanks to the placement of $700 million in Eurobonds and several issues of ruble bonds since the start of this year, he said. The company still has to repay about $200 million in 2019 out of an initial $621 million, Marchuk said.
EuroChem might refinance remaining 2019 debt with bilateral bank loans or by re-entering the ruble bond market before the end of the year, he said. Or, considering the small amount of the debt, the company might repay it from its own funds, Marchuk said.
EuroChem on Tuesday reported EBITDA up 21% to $819 million in the first half of 2019. The company expects about the same EBITDA in the second half of the year, Marchuk said.
EuroChem commercial director Charlie Bendana said the company expects favourable market conditions in the second half. Phosphate prices have fallen below the variable costs of many producers, so the company believes that the market has hit bottom and will begin to gradually recover toward the end of the year, he said.
For potassium, the market will be balanced and stable in the second half of the year, Bendana said, adding that a similar situation is expected for nitrogen fertilizer.