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Standard and Poor’s retains Malta’s stable rating, outlook

Standard and Poor’s retains Malta’s stable rating, outlook

Standard and Poor’s today reaffirmed Malta’s stable outlook as well as its BBB+/A-2 rating. In a statement published today the credit rating agency observed that the new administration, by means of effective governance, began registering concrete progress on its long-term reforms. These positive prospects for Malta led Standard & Poor’s to reaffirm a stable outlook for Malta.

Standard & Poor’s also affirmed that Malta is making good progress in its energy plan, and remarked that this reform will continue supporting economic growth, which is already improving and exceeding all expectations, including Standard & Poor’s own.

The conversion to gas as an energy source will enable Government to lower the cost of the generation of electricity by as much as half. In a statement the government said that its plan for the energy sector is unfolding in a manner that is strengthening the country’s financial position, so much so that the economic growth registered during 2013 exceeded all expectations.

The international credit rating agency further welcomed the Chinese investment which the Government secured for the state-owned enterprise Enemalta. Standard & Poor’s said that this investment will allow the Government to reduce the state-owned corporation’ losses, and consequently, the negative effect this has on Government finances. This process, Standard & Poor’s remarked, is a positive sign that the Government will address long-term issues such as pensions, and greater female participation in the labour force. It was the accumulation of debt that Standard & Poor’s reported as being the only factor which discouraged the credit rating agency from improving Malta’s credit rating. It further said that Malta’s assessment would be further improved if the Government proceeds with its agenda which prioritizes economic growth and, subsequently, reduction of the debt.

Standard & Poor’s analysis is a clear recognition of the Government’s efforts, the statement said. The Government remains determined to, through responsible governance, keep creating wealth and ensuring that this wealth is distributed fairly among Malta’s hardworking population. So that Malta becomes stronger and fairer.

http://www.independent.com.mt/

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