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Lusa - Business News - Angola: Fitch raises outlook for economy to ‘stable’

London, July 10 (Lusa) - Financial rating agency Fitch has upgraded its economic outlook for the Angolan economy from 'negative' to 'stable' despite keeping the sovereign credit rating at 'B', which is considered below investment grade, or 'junk.'
The review of the oeconomic outlook form 'negative' to 'stable,' Fitch said, reflects improvements in the management of the exchange rate regime and the adoption of an ambitious reform agenda, which includes monetary, budgetary and structural adjustments that will reduce external vulnerabilities and improve public finances.
According to the full rating report on Angola, to which Lusa had access on Tuesday, Fitch keeps Angola in the 'junk' category, that is, below investment grade, but it raused the outlook for teh eocnomy, which means that it does not anticipate events that could lower the country's rating.
Among the main reasons for improving the assessment of the economy, Fitch pointed to current external adjustments, particulalry the end of the fixed exchange rate, the improvement of economic growth, although limited, and the resumption of fiscal consolidation, noting that the banking sector remains a weakness and that the country's structural factors are a constraint on the assessment of credit quality.
Fitch expects Angola's economic growth to increase from a growth rate of 2.3% this year to 2.5% in 2019 and the budget deficit to fall to 5.4% this year, after reaching 6.8% in 2017.
Public debt increased to 66.6% of GDP at the end of last year, compared to 50.7% at the end of 2015, Fitch noted, adding it expects public debt to reach a peak of 67.5% of GDP at the end of this year and then start to fall from 2019, to reach 58.7% of GDP in 2020.
The decline in debt reflects the expectation of budgetary adjustments, but will also be driven by the high level of inflation, which Fitch expects to reach 25% this year, it said.
Where Fitch notes most difficulties for the Angolan economy is in the banking sector, which "remains a weakness for the economy and a source of negative implications for sovereign credit."
Banks, the analysts added, face a difficult operating environment, reflecting conflicting economic winds, uncertainties in access to foreign currency, and a predominance of government borrowing.


Agency : LUSA

Date : 2018-07-11 08:18:39


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