Fitch reaffirms Bahrain’s credit rating
Manama, May 28, 2009
Fitch, the international rating agency, has reaffirmed Bahrain’s long-term foreign currency issuer default rating (IDR) at “A” and long-term local currency IDR at “A+”, both with stable outlooks.
The country ceiling is also affirmed at “A+”. Continuous growth in Bahrain’s non-oil sector as well as enhanced political and economic reforms were taken into account by Fitch for the rating reaffirmation.
“Bahrain’s economy has grown by 6.3 per cent in constant prices in 2008,” said Rasheed Al Maraj, governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain. “The Financial Sector remains the largest contributor to the economy representing around 27 per cent of real GDP.”
In 2008, the value added of the financial sector to the economy in real terms has grown by 5.6 per cent despite the financial turmoil.
“We are very pleased to welcome this reaffirmation of Bahrain’s sovereign credit rating, especially in light of the current international market situation, and the sharp decline in oil prices in comparison to last year,” said Al Maraj.
“This rating is a testament to Bahrain’s strong position as the centre for banking and finance. The CBB, on its part, will continue its robust, yet market-friendly, regulation and supervision of the financial services industry, to support the Government’s many economic initiatives, with the ultimate goal of improving the standard of living of all citizens,” the governor added. – TradeArabia News Service