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Cash crunch fears rise in Thai corporate bond market on pandemic

Seven companies extend debt maturities up to 24 months to preserve liquidity

Sales of bonds issued by Thailand's top companies, including Siam Cement and a chemical unit of PTT, have slowed since the outbreak. (Source photos by Reuters and Akira Kodaka)

BANGKOK -- The novel coronavirus pandemic has created uncertainty in the Thai corporate bond market. Sales of bonds issued by the country's top companies have been slower than before the outbreak, raising fears of a liquidity crunch.

This has prompted a challenge for Thai corporates whose 600-billion-baht ($19 billion) in bonds are due to mature this year, according to the Thai Bond Market Association. The market uncertainty is bad news, especially for companies that want to keep cash on hand in the face of declining sales caused by the pandemic's effect on the economy.

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