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Fitch downgrades Suriname's foreign-currency rating to CCC

Fitch Ratings downgraded its long- and short-term foreign-currency issuer default ratings on Suriname to CCC/C from B-/B over mounting government debt levels and reduced financing flexibility.

"The large government deficit coupled with the widening current account deficit, in advance of May 2020 parliamentary elections, are inconsistent with the stabilized exchange rate, increasing risk of macro instability," Fitch added.

Fitch estimates that the country's general government debt-to-GDP ratio rose to 80.9% by 2019-end from 72.1% in 2018. The agency expects that a fiscal adjustment could happen only after the elections, such as in the second half of 2020 or in 2021.

The rating agency said it does not assign an outlook to ratings in line with CCC. The outlook on the long-term rating was previously negative.

Fitch also downgraded Suriname's long-term senior unsecured ratings to CCC from B-. The rating agency affirmed the country's local-currency ratings at B-/B, with a negative outlook.