Saudi sovereign debt rated world's least risky
Dubai, January 10, 2011
Saudi Arabia has been ranked as one of the world's least risky debt sovereigns, data from a financial research firm has revealed.
CMA Vision's fourth quarter sovereign debt credit risk report placed the GCC giant at 10th place in the world, according to The Economic Times.
It is the first time Saudi Arabia has reached the top 10, and reflects the solid fundamentals behind the country's economy despite the global recession. The sovereign rankings show the probability of a country being unable to honour its debt obligations over a five-year period of time.
For sovereign credit default swaps, this typically includes the probability of a restructuring of debt, the CMA Vision report said. Saudi Arabia has a 5.2 per cent chance of defaulting in the next five years - the same figure as Germany - the report said.
Norway, Finland and Sweden are ranked as the top three least risky sovereigns. At the other end of the scale, although Dubai has improved one place since the third quarter, the emirate is still regarded as the eighth most risky sovereign in the world.
According to CMA Vision, Dubai has a 25.5 per cent chance of being unable to honour its debt obligations, just behind Spain with 26.7 per cent. The Dubai figure is a slight improvement on the 26.5 per cent it recorded in the research firm's third quarter report.
The worst-ranked country is Greece, with 58.8 per cent. Other countries in the top 10 include Venezuela, Ireland, Portugal and Iraq.
Qatar has a 6.1 per cent chance of default and was ranked 15 in the world. Abu Dhabi was ranked as the third-best performer worldwide in the fourth quarter, as its credit default swaps tightened to just under 18 per cent.