Qatar Is Said to Plan Raising at Least $9 Billion From Bond Sale

Qatar is said to be considering raising at least $9 billion from international bond markets as the gas-rich nation boycotted by its Gulf neighbors seeks to replenish state coffers.

Government officials are in talks with banks to decide on the best time for a possible sale, people familiar with the matter said, declining to be identified because the talks are private. The bond is likely to be in line with or more than Qatar’s last issuance of $9 billion in 2016, they said. The finance ministry and government communications office didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Qatar, whose debt carries the fourth-highest investment grade at S&P Global Ratings, will target investors in Asia, the U.S. and Europe to make up for a shortfall of regional investors, the people said. Four countries, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, severed diplomatic and transport links with the nation in June, accusing it of supporting Sunni extremist groups and Iranian-backed militants. Qatar has repeatedly denied the charges.

The world’s largest exporter of liquefied natural gas is among Gulf Cooperation Council states selling debt to bridge budget deficits brought on by low oil prices. Abu Dhabi raised $10 billion last week, shortly after Saudi Arabia sold $12.5 billion.

Qatar is preparing to host the 2022 soccer World Cup and plans to spend $200 billion on infrastructure.