LONDON - The OPEC Fund for International Development, a development institution established by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries nearly 50 years ago, has raised $1 billion by selling its first ever bond.

With the money earmarked for food security, healthcare, infrastructure, education, employment and renewable energy projects, the three-year bond which will pay investors an interest rate of 4.5%, will also be classed as a 'sustainable development' bond.

It is a label that has a growing appeal for investors increasingly looking to use their resources in more environmentally and socially-beneficial ways.

The OPEC Fund said central banks and other types of "official" institutions accounted for 62% of the bond's buyers. Banks made up 19%, with asset managers and insurance and pension funds accounting for almost all the rest.

Geographically, it said that just over half of the buyers were from the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, 27% from Asia-Pacific and 21% from North America.

(Reporting by Marc Jones Editing by Tomasz Janowski)