Opinion

中國企業來港發債停不了

This opinion piece has been published in Hong Kong Economic Journal.

By: Date: December 20, 2017 Topic: Global Economics & Governance

This opinion piece has been published in Hong Kong Economic Journal, a Chinese Language daily newspaper specified by the Hong Kong SAR Government to publish statutory notices/advertisements.

中國企業離岸債券發行量自年初以來增長亮麗,這個主要處於香港的債券市場規模於今年底將會增加一倍。與此同時,2017年中國在岸債券市場發行量減少,有別於近幾年來的蓬勃發展。今年離岸市場快速擴張的主要原因之一是發行人發債成本持續下降,而且投資需求強勁,這突如其來的驚喜令香港債券市場重拾活力,特別在昔日被寄予厚望的點心債市場規模縮減的情況下,然而,當離岸發債成本有所上升時,美元債發行量的宴會是否將完結?

現時評估資金成本會否持續增加可能仍為時尚早,背後原因可能是最近高收益債券於全球遭到拋售的蔓延,但相關指數近日已經有所反彈,亦可能是投資者擔心中國高收益企業信用風險惡化,或十九大後中國政府會對高槓桿企業採取更嚴厲政策。

融資成本以外存有利因素     

離岸融資成本上升的其中一個影響是,在岸與離岸利差減少甚至轉為負值,顯示離岸市場對發行人吸引力下降,其中在岸融資成本雖然亦有所增加,但遠較離岸市場穩定。如果只看利差,2018年離岸發行看似不容樂觀,但是我們認為發行量將繼續增加,主要因為背後有融資成本以外的因素驅動。雖然金融條件重要,但其他重要的因素會促使中國企業繼續離岸發行美元債券。首先,持續的去槓桿政策令企業愈來愈難發行在岸債券,首當其衝的當然是對高收益類別企業,預期企業將繼續利用管制較少的離岸市場作為資金窗口,尤其是一年內到期債券亦大幅增加,非金融企業發行短期債券目前已佔2017年其發行量約8%,達到73億美元,去年僅為0%【圖1】。

支持海外併購減儲備壓力

由於發行一年以下短期債券不需國家發展和改革委員會批准,此類短期融資方式愈來愈受房地產及高槓桿發行人歡迎,企業對資金如飢似渴,急需籌資解決燃眉之急,但伴隨的顯然是更高的資金成本及流動性風險。離岸發行的另一個驅動因素來自重新推動海外收購及繼續為海外現有業務提供資金,儘管最近併購減少,但要實現中國的產業政策雄心還是需要購買境外的戰略資產,離岸籌資對企業相對較方便及不會通過資本外流對外滙儲備構成壓力。

總而言之,即使明年發行人離岸融資條件惡化,中國企業將有其他誘因繼續於香港以發行美元債券籌集資金。

 

法國外貿銀行亞太區經濟學家吳卓殷對此文也有貢獻。


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