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S&P revises outlook on Georgia-based Liberty Bank

S&P Global Ratings on May 30 revised the outlook on Georgia-based JSC Liberty Bank to positive from stable and affirmed its long- and short-term counterparty credit ratings at B/B.

The positive outlook reflects Liberty Bank's track record of healthy earnings generation capacity, which supports its capitalization, despite uncertainties surrounding its ownership structure. The lender also benefits from a well-established market position in the Georgian consumer financial segment, mainly focusing on low-risk clients, the agency noted.

S&P believes Liberty Bank has a moderate systemic importance in Georgia's banking sector owing to its exclusive role in the distribution of pensions and social welfare, and expects the lender to continue to show good financial results given its sustainable competitive position in a protected market niche.

The outlook also reflects the possibility that S&P could raise the bank's long-term rating in the next 12 months if it continues to demonstrate strong growth, as per forecasts, while maintaining its asset quality and capital position at least at the current levels.

S&P Global Ratings and S&P Global Market Intelligence are owned by S&P Global Inc.