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Rating up again

SHAWN CUMBERBATCH, [email protected]

Rating up again

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BARBADOS HAS RECEIVED its second local currency credit rating upgrade in recent months.

But the news has not taken Barbados Economic Society president Shane Lowe by surprise, and he is more concerned that the country’s foreign currency ratings remain in default.

The economist, therefore, stressed the “most important” thing at this stage was completing the debt restructuring process with foreign creditors.

Lowe was reacting to yesterday’s announcement from regional credit rating firm Caribbean Information and Credit Rating Services Limited (CariCRIS) that it “has upgraded the Regional Scale Local Currency rating of the Government of Barbados from CariD (Default) to CariBB, with a stable outlook”.

CariCRIS said the decision was “driven by the closure of the exchange offer for domestic (Barbados dollar-denominated) debt”.

“This marks the successful completion of the restructuring of BDS$11.9 billion (equivalent to US$5.95 billion) in Barbados dollar-denominated claims on the Government of Barbados and its public sector,” it said.

However, the Trinidad and Tobago-based entity maintained the Regional Scale Foreign Currency rating of CariD (Default) on Barbados’ foreign currency denominated debt because “the level of creditworthiness of the GOB [Government of Barbados], adjudged in relation to other rated obligors in the Caribbean, is below average”. (SC)

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