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S&P assigns rating to Malta-based Bank of Valletta

S&P Global Ratings on Dec. 20 assigned Bank of Valletta Plc BBB+/A-2 long- and short-term counterparty credit ratings, with a stable outlook.

The ratings reflect S&P's view that the Malta-based bank will continue to be dominant in the domestic market and will keep reducing its stock of sour assets through a combination of write-offs, new lending, improving recovery rates and its recently strengthened capitalization. These strengths offset the bank's geographic and business diversification limitations compared with its peers, S&P said.

The stable outlook reflects the agency's expectation that the bank's creditworthiness will likely remain unchanged over the next two years.