Sebi says major steps to boost corp bond market in day or two


Market watchdog Sebi today said it will announce some important measures to improve liquidity and trading mechanism for the corporate bond market in "a couple of days".

"Sebi is trying to provide more liquidity into the corporate bond market and one or two important measures are in the pipeline to improve the liquidity and the trading mechanism. Hopefully, in the next couple of days we will be able to announce that," Sebi chairman U K Sinha said here this evening, without elaborating on further details.

He was speaking at an event where he launched a corporate bonds information database portal by NSE and Prime Database, which has comprehensive information on nearly 1,500 corporate bonds which are listed.

Sinha said: "The database will help in dissemination of information in the bond market, that was a big hurdle till now."

Addressing the gathering, NSE chief executive Chitra Ramkrishna said: "We hope this database will help the market community in accessing important data, in a quick and efficient manner and contribute towards building a dynamic and vibrant debt platform."

There are 191 publicly listed securities or debt instruments trading in the retail segment of the debt platform and 564 non-publicly issued corporate bonds in the institutional segment of the debt platform.

It can be noted that the corporate debt market is nascent as it is dominated by the government bonds. The government and the regulators -- RBI and Sebi -- have been working overtime to increase the depth of the corporate debt market in their bid to widen this market.

A vibrant debt market will help banks correct their asset liability mismatches due to their large exposure to long-gestation infra projects.

The government has set an ambitious USD 1 trillion investment target for the infra space during the 12th Plan, out of which only half can be funded by banks and the rest has to come from other sources like corporate debt market.

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