Suddenly, it's a year of mega bond deals in emergingmarkets.

Argentina drew US$65 billion in bids for its $16.5 billionoffering in April, and now borrowers in the Middle East arestepping up. Abu Dhabi returned to the international capitalmarkets with a $5 billion placement, followed by a record $9billion sale by Qatar. Saudi Arabia is looking to sell as much as$15 billion of bonds in a debut offering, people with knowledge ofthe matter said.

Governments in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, whichincludes Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are turning toforeign markets after the plunge in oil prices punched holes intheir budgets. Issuers are also rushing to capture lowerborrowing costs before a potential Federal Reserve interest-rateincrease. After the slowest first quarter since 2010, themega-deals have propelled dollar- and euro-denominated bond salesfrom developing nations to almost $120 billion in April andMay.

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