More debt appetite emerges from Japan: Ascend Finance Forum London 2012

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Japanese banks and operating lessors are showing healthy appetites for aviation debt financings amid a pullpack by certain lenders due to the fallout in the global financial markets, say financiers at the Ascend Finance Forum in London today.

Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank (CA-CIB) global head of aviation José Abramovici said more capacity is emerging from Japan in the senior and mezzazine markets.

"There is capacity in Japan for aircraft asset types with a three to seven year view from small regional banks and leasing companies that want to diversify from the Japanese operating lease (JOL) products," he says.

CA-CIB recently closed a deal on an A320 for AirAsia operated by AirAsia Japan and brought in Japanese lender Tokyo Star Bank on the financing.

Some small lessors that traditionally use JOL products are looking at "loan tickets" around $15-20 million, he says.

Deutsche Bank's head of aviation financial solutions Richard Moody confirms new appetite coming from Japan. "We got involved in a transaction in the Middle East and brought in four Japanese institutions that had never financed aircraft assets before."

The banking panel also agreed that funding from Chinese banks is limited outside the People's Republic of China. "They have diversified in non-Chinese carriers, but I don't believe they will solve the capacity problem. Chinese banks will face restrictions of Basle III and will be impacted by the cost of funding," Abramovici says.