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Building on the global experience of its lawyers in working with covered bond issuers, Mayer Brown LLP, a leading global law firm, has advised ABN AMRO, as arranger for CIBC, on the establishment of an €8 billion Global Public Sector Covered Bond Program. This is the first transaction featuring mortgage loans guaranteed by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Covered bonds have been branded “an opportunity in the making” by leading market experts. It is expected that covered bonds will become one of the major funding tools for European banks in 2008-09 due to a combination of factors, including the implementation of Basel II rules and the liquidity crisis in the financial markets. In the United States, covered bonds are drawing considerable interest from leading banks and the federal government.

Mayer Brown’s highly experienced Covered Bonds Group is at the forefront of this market. The transatlantic team which advised ABN AMRO was led by New York partner Paul Jorissen and London partner Dominic Griffiths and included London associates Carlos Echave, Gina Hartnett and Michele Daelemans.

 “Clients are interested in exploring opportunities in the covered bonds market,” Mr. Jorissen said. “With extensive experience in mortgage funding and, in particular, covered bonds, we are able to help our clients understand this burgeoning marketplace.”

Members of Mayer Brown’s Covered Bonds Group have acted for several large UK and European covered bond issuers. In addition, Mr. Echave has had a high-profile role in advising on the developing legislation/regulatory framework of covered bonds in Europe. Prior to joining Mayer Brown, he was director and legal counsel of the European Securitisation Forum (ESF).  His main role within the ESF included advising working groups on legal and regulatory matters affecting securitization.