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EMEA Emerging Market Sovereign Rating Trends 2021

This report does not constitute a rating action.

Last year was challenging for the 53 emerging sovereigns that S&P Global Ratings rates across the Commonwealth of Independent States and Central and Eastern Europe (CIS+CEE); the Middle East and North Africa (MENA); and sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). GDP outcomes ranged from a 30% contraction for Lebanon, which has been struggling with a fiscal, governance, and banking crisis since 2019, to 3% growth for Ethiopia, where debt-financed public infrastructure projects continue to dominate the national accounts. Median GDP for the emerging EMEA region as a whole declined by 4.5% in 2020, and we expect that, on average, output in emerging market economies in EMEA will not return to 2019 levels until 2022. The decline in output is even more concrete when measured in U.S. dollars. During 2020, aggregate EMEA EM GDP in dollar terms declined by $858 billion to around $7.0 trillion, its lowest level since 2016, as lower oil prices and exchange rate adjustments drove down the dollar value of output in some of the region's largest economies, including Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and Turkey.

The fiscal challenge for emerging EMEA sovereigns over the next three years is considerably greater than during the years after the global financial crisis. In the region, lower growth lead to a widening of fiscal deficits from an estimated 1.7% of GDP average in 2019 to 7.3% of GDP last year. Only three out of 53 emerging EMEA sovereign credits, all of them small sovereigns in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)--Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Ras Al Khaimah--operated budgetary surpluses during 2020. As a consequence, public debt moved higher. We estimate that gross government debt levels averaged 63.5% of GDP at the end of last year, compared to 51.8% of GDP in 2019, and 38.8% of GDP in 2014. In order to stabilize debt to GDP by 2023, Oman, South Africa, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia would need to consolidate their budgets by over 10 percentage points (ppts) of GDP over the next three years, a major undertaking with potential social and political consequences. According to our projections, nether Saudi Arabia nor South Africa will manage to make the required adjustment to put debt on a stable path by 2023, albeit in the case of Saudi Arabia, the turnaround in oil prices, and recovering global demand will make the adjustment more achievable, and increase Saudi Arabia's already elevated stock of fiscal reserves.

Last year's deteriorating credit metrics took a toll on ratings on the emerging countries in EMEA. While making up 40% of all sovereigns in our rating universe, emerging EMEA governments accounted for 48% of all downgrades (excluding defaults) last year. There were no upgrades. Of the 16 downgrades of emerging EMEA countries in 2020 (excluding moves to 'SD' [selective default]), nine pertained to SSA governments, which suffered from a combination of volatile commodity prices, flagging internal demand, climbing health expenditure, and social transfers. (During 2020, there were 16 downgrades affecting 13 EMEA sovereigns. Three sovereigns, Oman, Sharjah, and Zambia, were each downgraded on two separate occasions.) SSA governments entered 2020 with already high and rising stocks of public debt, and an increasing share of government revenue absorbed by debt servicing. One SSA sovereign entered into default last year; on Oct. 21 we lowered the rating on Zambia to 'SD', after the government, which had long been struggling to restructure its considerable official obligations to foreign governments, particularly the Chinese, suspended debt service payments to external commercial creditors, including holders of its April 2024 Eurobond.

During 2020 we also lowered ratings on Middle Eastern sovereigns on seven separate occasions, though average sovereigns ratings in the GCC remain among the highest of all rated sovereigns. Lower oil prices and volume exports during the first half of 2020 elicited only modest fiscal adjustments among GCC sovereigns. Despite efforts to introduce a value-added tax, and to diversify their economies, budgets, reserves, and GDP growth continue to depend directly or indirectly on the pricing and volume production of fossil fuels. Regional governments recognize this and have amassed large fiscal reserves in "rainy day funds" to be able to weather temporary storms of commodity volatility. General government assets are below 16% of GDP for Bahrain, Iraq, and the emirates of Ras Al Khaimah and Sharjah. For Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, and Qatar, the assets exceed 200% of GDP, albeit in Kuwait, institutional idiosyncrasies have blocked the state from a direct line of access to these assets (as well as the ability to issue commercial debt), a constraint on flexibility that explains our downgrade of Kuwait to 'AA-' in March 2020, followed by the revision of the outlook to negative in July.

Chart 1

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Chart 2

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The good news is that, since the second half of 2020, capital inflows into EMEA emerging markets have bounced back, while optimism regarding global growth for 2021 has lifted commodity prices, including oil. With an estimated $15 trillion of negative yield sovereign debt outstanding (encompassing most OECD members as well as sovereigns we still consider to be), investors, including cross-over accounts, have increased their EM exposures to local markets that until recently were considered frontier (Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and across SSA, for example). While a recovery of capital inflows into local domestic bond markets helps to push funding costs lower it does not come without risks. We understand for example that most of the recent recovery of capital inflows into Turkey is taking place via the cross currency swaps market. These positions are easily reversible, for instance, should the central bank abruptly unwind the monetary tightening implemented since November.

Table 1

EMEA Emerging Markets Sovereign Rating Strengths And Weaknesses
Sovereign foreign currency ratings Institutional assessment Economic assessment External assessment Fiscal assessment, budget performance Fiscal assessment, debt Monetary assessment

Abu Dhabi

AA/Stable/A-1+ 4 1 2 1 1 4

Albania

B+/Stable/B 5 5 4 3 5 5

Angola

CCC+/Stable/C 5 6 6 6 6 5

Azerbaijan

BB+/Stable/B 5 5 2 1 1 5

Bahrain

B+/Stable/B 5 4 4 6 6 4

Belarus

B/Negative/B 5 5 5 4 4 5

Benin

B+/Stable/B 4 5 5 3 5 5

Bosnia and Herzegovina

B/Stable/B 5 5 4 3 2 6

Botswana

BBB+/Negative/A-2 3 5 2 3 1 4

Bulgaria

BBB/Stable/A-2 4 4 2 2 1 5

Burkina Faso

B/Stable/B 5 6 4 5 3 5

Cameroon

B-/Stable/B 6 5 5 4 3 5

Cape Verde

B/Negative/B 4 5 5 5* 6 5

Congo

CCC+/Stable/C 6 6 6 4* 6 5

Congo, D.R.

CCC+/Stable/C 6 6 6 4 2 6

Croatia

BBB-/Stable/A-3 4 4 2 2 5 4

Egypt

B/Stable/B 5 5 6* 6 6 4

Ethiopia

B/Negative/B 5 5 6 6 3 5

Georgia

BB/Stable/B 4 5 5 3 3* 4

Ghana

B-/Stable/B 5 5 6 6 6 4

Hungary

BBB/Stable/A-2 4 4 2 2 4 3

Iraq

B-/Stable/B 6 6 6* 6 6 6

Israel

AA-/Stable/A-1+ 4 1 1 3 4 2

Jordan

B+/Stable/B 4 6 6 3* 6* 4

Kazakhstan

BBB-/Stable/A-3 5 4 2 1 2 4

Kenya

B+/Negative/B 4 5 5 6 6 4

Kuwait

AA-/Negative/A-1+ 4 4 1 1 1 3

Lebanon

SD/NM/SD 6 6 6 6 6 6

Montenegro

B+/Negative/B 4 4 6 4* 6* 6

Morocco

BBB-/Negative/A-3 4 5 3 3 4* 3

Mozambique

CCC+/Stable/C 6 6 6 6 6 5

Nigeria

B-/Stable/B 5 6 6 6 5 5*

North Macedonia

BB-/Stable/B 5 4 3 4* 3 4

Oman

B+/Stable/B 4 5 5 6 6* 4

Poland

A-/Stable/A-2 4 4 2 4* 2 2

Qatar

AA-/Stable/A-1+ 4 1 4 1 2 4

Ras Al Khaimah

A-/Stable/A-2 4 3 2 1 1 5

Romania

BBB-/Negative/A-3 4 4 3 4 3 3

Russia

BBB-/Stable/A-3 5 5 1 4 1 3

Rwanda

B+/Negative/B 4 5 5 6 4* 4

Saudi Arabia

A-/Stable/A-2 4 4 1 5 1 4

Senegal

B+/Stable/B 4 4 5 5 5 5

Serbia

BB+/Stable/B 4 4 4 2 2 4

Sharjah

BBB-/Stable/A-3 4 3 2 5* 5* 5

St Helena

BBB-/Stable/A-3 3 5 4 3 1 5

South Africa

BB-/Stable/B 4 5 3 6 6 2

Tajikistan

B-/Stable/B 5 6 6* 6* 4 5

Togo

B/Stable/B 5 6 6 3 3 5

Turkey

B+/Stable/B 5 4 6 4 4 4

Uganda

B/Stable/B 5 6 5 6 6 4

Ukraine

B/Stable/B 5 5 5 3 5* 4

Uzbekistan

BB-/Negative/B 5 5 3 2 4

Zambia

SD/--/SD 6 6 6 6 5
1 (%) 0 6 8 11 17 0
2 (%) 0 0 19 8 13 6
3 (%) 4 4 9 21 13 9
4 (%) 45 26 13 19 13 38
5 (%) 38 40 21 11 13 38
6 (%) 13 25 30 30 30 9
Median 5 5 5 4 4 4
Mean 4.6 4.7 4.1 4.0 3.8 4.4
Standard deviation 0.8 1.2 1.7 1.7 1.9 1.0
*Deterioration since June 2020. §Improvement since June 2020. Ratings as of Jan. 27, 2021.

For 2021, we project that the economies of EMEA emerging markets will grow 3.8% on average, as flattering carry over effects from 2020 and a gradual improvement of the epidemiological situation benefit external demand, with China projected to expand by 7%, boosting export prospects particularly for African and Middle Eastern economies. Despite an incipient recovery, we enter 2021 with 11 negative outlooks and no positive outlooks on the 53 emerging EMEA sovereigns we rate. Not since June 2016 (when eight SSA sovereigns were on a negative outlook, while Egypt was experiencing foreign exchange shortages in the aftermath of the tragic bombing of Metrojet Flight 9268) has the negative outlook balance been as high. More than anything else this reflects the unusual uncertainty regarding economic conditions given the worsening third wave of COVID-19, alongside persistent fiscal pressures in SSA.

Chart 3

image

Table 2

EMEA Emerging Markets Economic Outlook
Real GDP growth (%) GG balance / GDP (%) Net GG debt / GDP (%) Current account balance / GDP (%) Narrow net ext. debt / CAR (%)
2020 2021 2020 2021 2020 2021 2020 2021 2020 2021
Abu Dhabi (7.5) 2.0 6.5 10.2 (268.5) (244.9) N/A N/A N/A N/A
Albania (7.5) 4.5 (8.4) (4.2) 75.8 75.9 (11.0) (9.5) 17.2 23.3
Angola (5.5) 3.0 (4.0) (1.0) 116.0 100.4 (7.3) (4.0) 238.4 223.6
Azerbaijan (5.4) 2.4 (6.5) (1.6) (57.1) (49.7) (4.0) 2.0 (124.1) (99.9)
Bahrain (5.0) 2.7 (12.7) (6.8) 97.4 101.8 (9.3) (6.6) (41.4) (33.5)
Belarus (2.0) 1.5 (2.5) 0.0 35.2 37.2 (1.8) (1.6) 77.9 76.5
Benin 2.2 6.0 (3.8) (3.2) 34.0 34.9 (4.5) (4.3) 98.1 91.5
Bosnia and Herzegovina (6.0) 3.5 (4.5) (2.0) 31.3 32.7 (4.1) (3.8) 16.4 15.0
Botswana (9.0) 6.0 (8.0) (6.0) 11.2 16.3 (12.2) (8.4) (46.9) (23.5)
Bulgaria (4.5) 4.0 (5.1) (5.0) 17.5 21.5 0.5 0.4 (40.1) (37.0)
Burkina Faso (2.0) 4.0 (5.5) (5.4) 42.7 46.1 (3.5) (5.5) 58.6 60.5
Cameroon (2.7) 3.2 (4.5) (3.2) 37.7 39.4 (5.8) (4.6) 144.1 138.3
Cape Verde (8.5) 6.2 (11.4) (8.8) 124.2 124.3 (11.0) (8.5) 121.0 110.8
Congo (9.5) (2.2) (5.0) (3.0) 141.8 129.1 (12.7) (5.3) 279.4 209.7
Congo, D.R. (2.6) 3.5 (1.6) (0.8) 12.9 12.7 (5.5) (4.3) 31.7 31.9
Croatia (8.4) 5.6 (7.8) (2.9) 78.8 76.8 (1.0) (0.9) 38.6 29.8
Egypt 3.6 2.5 (7.0) (8.0) 77.7 80.7 (3.1) (3.5) 105.2 124.8
Ethiopia 3.0 3.1 (3.0) (3.4) 29.2 31.1 (5.4) (6.5) 216.8 255.8
Georgia (5.0) 4.0 (9.0) (7.6) 53.0 57.8 (10.3) (7.9) 110.7 108.9
Ghana 1.0 5.0 (13.5) (7.5) 67.3 68.6 (4.2) (3.1) 122.9 116.6
Hungary (6.1) 4.8 (7.3) (4.0) 73.0 72.0 (1.5) (1.0) 26.9 24.1
Iraq (11.5) 6.5 (19.0) (8.0) 70.5 68.2 (10.3) (2.4) 4.3 10.8
Israel (5.0) 4.5 (12.0) (7.5) 73.0 77.0 3.6 3.4 (66.4) (62.1)
Jordan (5.5) 2.7 (5.0) (3.0) 82.7 85.3 (8.0) (6.4) 73.0 72.8
Kazakhstan (2.2) 3.9 (8.7) (1.7) (6.5) (4.5) (4.9) (3.2) (44.3) (37.9)
Kenya 1.0 4.0 (7.9) (7.9) 60.0 62.7 (5.9) (4.9) 192.5 186.4
Kuwait (7.0) 0.0 (2.1) 5.7 (565.7) (524.7) (6.6) (0.8) (902.5) (777.9)
Lebanon (30.0) 1.0 (12.0) (10.0) 170.6 171.7 (5.6) (11.2) 11.6 20.8
Montenegro (9.5) 5.0 (10.0) (5.0) 79.3 80.6 (12.7) (15.3) 215.9 193.6
Morocco (5.5) 4.5 (7.7) (5.0) 65.9 66.9 (6.4) (5.3) 41.1 39.7
Mozambique 1.0 5.5 (7.0) (5.0) 92.9 92.2 (24.9) (24.6) 401.5 410.6
Nigeria (3.8) 1.9 (5.5) (4.5) 39.1 41.0 (4.4) (1.7) 77.9 73.1
North Macedonia (6.0) 3.5 (7.5) (5.0) 51.4 54.6 (4.4) (2.9) 32.3 30.5
Oman (5.0) 2.2 (18.1) (11.3) 15.0 26.3 (14.5) (10.9) 68.7 73.6
Poland (3.0) 3.8 (9.3) (5.1) 55.9 58.7 3.0 0.8 27.6 22.1
Qatar (4.4) 2.1 6.3 5.3 (127.1) (125.3) (4.4) (1.2) (108.4) (97.2)
Ras Al Khaimah (5.0) 3.0 0.5 0.4 (5.8) (6.0) N/A N/A N/A N/A
Romania (5.2) 4.0 (9.2) (7.2) 43.0 49.3 (4.5) (5.1) 34.1 37.9
Russia (3.5) 2.9 (4.7) (2.2) 9.9 11.1 2.0 2.4 (92.1) (85.1)
Rwanda (0.5) 4.9 (8.8) (9.0) 59.5 66.9 (16.4) (10.7) 245.3 210.0
Saudi Arabia (4.5) 2.2 (11.0) (6.2) (88.7) (73.8) (10.0) (0.6) (198.9) (127.2)
Senegal 0.5 5.2 (6.3) (4.8) 58.9 60.6 (10.7) (9.9) 148.5 143.5
Serbia (1.5) 4.5 (8.9) (3.0) 53.1 53.0 (5.5) (5.9) 54.1 51.9
Sharjah (6.0) 3.0 (3.0) (2.3) 28.9 33.2 N/A N/A N/A N/A
St Helena (2.0) 2.5 (1.9) 0.5 (9.0) (8.6) N/A N/A N/A N/A
South Africa (7.3) 3.6 (15.9) (11.5) 80.1 86.5 (0.8) (1.4) 63.6 57.5
Tajikistan 1.1 5.4 (6.8) (4.4) 46.5 47.5 (6.7) (4.9) 123.0 114.3
Togo 0.2 4.0 (5.5) (2.5) 42.9 43.3 (4.1) (3.7) 145.8 139.9
Turkey (1.5) 3.6 (5.0) (4.0) 36.7 35.5 (4.5) (4.2) 134.5 124.9
Uganda (0.5) 4.5 (8.2) (10.0) 42.6 50.3 (8.2) (8.0) 105.5 112.3
Ukraine (6.0) 4.0 (7.5) (5.3) 65.1 65.8 4.2 (2.1) 95.4 98.0
Uzbekistan 0.5 5.0 (7.5) (5.7) 8.4 14.2 (5.4) (7.1) (3.1) 18.6
Zambia (4.0) 2.0 (11.0) (9.0) 105.4 106.5 (0.9) (1.3) 193.7 204.3

Sovereign Summaries

S&P Global Ratings rates 53 sovereigns in emerging countries in EMEA, across three regions: the CIS and Central and Eastern Europe (CIS+CEE; 20 sovereigns); the Middle East and North Africa (MENA; 13 sovereigns); and SSA (20 sovereigns). As of January 2021, we rate 11 more sovereigns than we did 10 years ago, all of which are in SSA.

Abu Dhabi (AA/Stable/A-1+)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Emirate of Abu Dhabi, Nov. 27, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 1
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment - Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment - Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that, despite oil price pressures, Abu Dhabi's fiscal position will remain strong over the next two years. We expect the structural dependence on the oil sector and institutional weaknesses to remain.

Upside scenario

We could consider raising our rating on Abu Dhabi if we observed pronounced improvements in data transparency, including on fiscal assets and external data, alongside further progress in institutional reforms. Furthermore, measures to improve the effectiveness of monetary policy in Abu Dhabi, such as developing domestic capital markets, could be positive for the rating over time.

Downside scenario

We could consider lowering the rating if there were to be a marked deterioration in Abu Dhabi's currently strong fiscal balance sheet and net external asset position. If fiscal deficits or contingent liabilities caused liquid assets to drop below 100% of GDP, downward pressure on the rating would develop. We could also consider a negative rating action if domestic or regional events compromised political and economic stability in Abu Dhabi.

(Originally published March 27, 2020)

Table 3

Abu Dhabi
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 76.1 71.2 76.6 91.0 97.1 81.3 91.4 94.6 100.6
GDP growth 4.9 2.6 (0.9) 1.3 1.5 (7.5) 2.0 3.5 2.0
GDP per capita growth 0.1 (1.8) (0.4) 4.9 10.4 (2.6) (0.5) 1.5 (0.2)
Current account balance/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Narrow net external debt/CAR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
GG balance/GDP 6.2 (0.4) 4.5 9.7 10.6 6.5 10.2 10.5 10.9
GG net debt/GDP (228.6) (226.7) (216.4) (202.1) (216.2) (268.5) (244.9) (242.4) (234.1)
CPI inflation 4.3 2.0 1.6 3.3 (0.8) 0.5 2.0 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast. N/A--Not applicable.

Albania (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Aarti Sakhuja, aarti.sakhuja@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Albania 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, July 31, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that:

  • Higher government borrowing from abroad will offset lost foreign exchange earnings and investment inflows in 2020 and prevent FX reserves from coming under pressure;
  • Growth will rebound in 2021 and the economy will recover to 2019 levels by 2022, based on our assumption that effective vaccines will be distributed by the end of next year, benefiting tourism and remittance flows; and
  • The fiscal deficit, which will increase sharply in 2020, will narrow from 2021 onward, returning government debt-to-GDP to a declining trajectory.

We could lower the ratings over the next year if, contrary to our expectations, the financing of Albania's external deficit becomes less secure, putting pressure on reserves. We could also lower the ratings if the government debt stock continues to rise, because of either higher fiscal deficits or the materialization of contingent liabilities from public-private partnerships (PPPs).

We could consider raising the ratings if the authorities implement reforms that significantly improve the business environment and management of fiscal risks, while FDI inflows continue, and the informal economy shrinks.

(Originally published July 31, 2020)

Table 4

Albania
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 4.0 4.1 4.5 5.3 5.4 5.1 5.3 5.6 5.8
GDP growth 2.2 3.3 3.8 4.1 2.2 (7.5) 4.5 4.0 3.5
GDP per capita growth 2.6 3.3 4.0 4.4 2.8 (7.4) 4.6 4.1 3.6
Current account balance/GDP (8.6) (7.6) (7.5) (6.8) (8.0) (11.0) (9.5) (8.3) (6.5)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 130.4 117.1 117.1 116.3 115.2 120.7 124.0 124.6 122.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR 19.7 11.8 12.2 7.3 3.4 17.2 23.3 25.3 25.1
GG balance/GDP (4.1) (1.8) (2.0) (1.6) (1.9) (8.4) (4.2) (2) (1.8)
GG net debt/GDP 70.3 70.2 67.1 62.8 62.8 75.8 75.9 74.0 72.4
CPI inflation 1.9 1.3 2.0 2.0 1.4 1.5 2.0 2.4 2.4
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 38.1 37.1 35.4 32.5 33.9 36.2 34.7 34.4 34.7
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Angola (CCC+/Stable/C)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Angola 'CCC+/C' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Aug. 7, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the risks associated with the large external funding needs, against our expectation of reduced near-term debt-servicing requirements following restructuring agreements with bilateral lenders.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the government's external debt service were to surpass our projections, or the external environment were to deteriorate, for example, should oil prices fall further.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings if the debt service were to become more manageable, in line with the proposed extension of some external non-commercial principal payments. Ratings upside would also hinge on continued macroeconomic reforms and a more stable exchange rate.

(Originally published Aug. 7, 2020)

Table 5

Angola
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 4.2 3.5 4.1 3.3 2.6 1.8 1.9 1.9 2.0
GDP growth 0.9 (2.6) (0.1) (2) (0.9) (5.5) 3.0 2.0 2.8
GDP per capita growth (2.5) (5.8) (3.4) (5.3) (4.0) (8.5) (0.3) (1.3) (0.5)
Current account balance/GDP (8.8) (3.1) (0.5) 7.3 6.1 (7.3) (4.0) (4.3) (0.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 94.4 89.4 82.7 75.5 84.3 108.5 101.0 103.7 111.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 35.3 84.0 82.7 83.2 106.4 238.4 223.6 222.3 194.3
GG balance/GDP (2.9) (3.8) (6.3) 3.1 0.8 (4) (1) (1) (0.8)
GG net debt/GDP 24.2 50.0 58.5 82.0 97.3 116.0 100.4 96.2 89.4
CPI inflation 5.5 49.9 23.7 18.6 16.9 25.0 20.0 15.0 10.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 24.8 20.5 16.5 14.3 14.7 16.3 15.4 16.1 16.7
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Azerbaijan (BB+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Shokhrukh Temurov, shokhrukh.temurov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Azerbaijan Outlook Revised To Stable From Negative On Receding Risks From Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict; Ratings Affirmed, Jan. 22, 2021
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that the ceasefire agreement between Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Russia will broadly hold, underpinning a reduction in war-related security, financial sector, and balance-of-payments risks.

It also reflects our view that a rebound in economic activity and comparatively higher hydrocarbon prices will, over the next 12 months, prevent Azerbaijan's fiscal and external positions from deteriorating materially from strong levels.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if another outbreak of military confrontation leads to a deterioration in Azerbaijan's security situation, its balance of payments position, or the stability of the domestic financial system. This is not our baseline scenario.

Beyond the recent conflict, we could also lower the ratings if Azerbaijan's fiscal and external balances weaken more than we project. This could happen, for example, as a result of a substantial decline in hydrocarbon revenue, increased fiscal pressure from the COVID-19 pandemic-induced economic slowdown, or higher government capital expenditure compared with our baseline assumptions.

Rating pressure could also build if Azerbaijan's real per capita GDP growth falls further below that of peers with similar levels of economic development.

Upside scenario

Conversely, we could consider an upgrade if external surpluses were higher than we expect, resulting in further external asset accumulation. This could happen, for example, if hydrocarbon revenue increases markedly.

Ratings upside could also build if the government implements reforms addressing some of Azerbaijan's structural impediments, including constraints to monetary policy effectiveness stemming from high financial dollarization and a still-weak domestic banking system.

(Originally published Jan. 22, 2021)

Table 6

Azerbaijan
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 5.5 3.9 4.2 4.8 4.8 4.0 4.4 4.7 5.0
GDP growth 1.1 (3.1) 0.1 1.4 2.2 (5.4) 2.4 5.0 3.0
GDP per capita growth (0.1) (4.2) (1.0) 0.5 1.4 (6.2) 1.5 4.1 2.2
Current account balance/GDP (0.4) (3.6) 4.1 12.8 9.1 (4.0) 2.0 4.0 6.0
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 82.3 111.9 104.7 84.5 87.0 105.5 96.0 92.7 89.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR (86) (58.5) (62.4) (59.1) (83.4) (124.1) (99.9) (91.9) (89.4)
GG balance/GDP (4.0) 0.5 0.8 7.6 11.0 (6.5) (1.6) 1.0 2.3
GG net debt/GDP (70.1) (51.1) (40.0) (42.0) (53.4) (57.1) (49.7) (48.0) (47.0)
CPI inflation 4.0 12.4 12.9 2.3 2.6 2.8 2.7 2.9 2.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 45.3 29.2 16.2 16.3 18.4 21.3 20.1 19.9 19.4
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Bahrain (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Bahrain 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Nov. 27, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook indicates that we expect Bahrain to benefit from further disbursements under the $10 billion GCC support package, and that its neighbors would likely provide additional further extraordinary support, if required. We expect the government to continue implementing measures to reduce the budget deficit.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next year if foreign currency reserves decline, reducing the government's ability to service external debt in a timely manner. We could also lower the ratings if the government's budgetary consolidation measures slow, increasing the debt and debt-servicing burden beyond our current expectations. The rating could also come under pressure if, contrary to our expectations, Bahrain's large banking system suffered a loss of short-term external financing, including from nonresident deposits.

Upside scenario

Although not likely over the next year, we could raise the ratings by 2023 if Bahrain's budgetary position improved significantly beyond our current expectations. We would also consider raising the ratings if GDP per capita trend growth strengthens.

(Originally published Nov. 27, 2020)

Table 7

Bahrain
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 22.7 22.6 23.6 25.1 26.0 23.8 24.3 24.8 25.2
GDP growth 2.5 3.6 4.3 1.8 1.8 (5) 2.7 2.3 2.3
GDP per capita growth (1.7) (0.3) (1.1) 1.7 3.2 (6.0) 0.2 (0.2) (0.2)
Current account balance/GDP (2.4) (4.6) (4.1) (6.5) (2.1) (9.3) (6.6) (5.5) (4.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 307.4 362.0 339.4 307.8 321.9 352.0 345.2 335.7 324.2
Narrow net external debt/CAR (51.3) (47.9) (47.6) (26.2) (43.2) (41.4) (33.5) (28.2) (24.9)
GG balance/GDP (13) (13.5) (10.0) (6.3) (4.7) (12.7) (6.8) (5.7) (3.7)
GG net debt/GDP 37.8 49.9 57.9 68.1 73.3 97.4 101.8 105.2 106.5
CPI inflation 1.9 2.8 1.4 2.1 1.0 0.0 2.0 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 64.7 64.1 62.7 65.4 65.1 70.2 69.7 69.5 69.3
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Belarus (B/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Belarus, Oct. 2, 2020
Rating score snapshot:
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook indicates that risks to the financial stability of the domestic banking system, much of which is publicly controlled, are rising. Residents have been converting their savings to foreign currencies and partial deposit withdrawals have accelerated through August, in the aftermath of the disputed presidential election. In a downside case, this could deplete the Belarus central bank's available foreign exchange reserves and present contingent liability risks for the government. Since the beginning of August, gross reserves have declined by $1.4 billion, and now represent only 2.6 months of import cover.

Downside scenario

More broadly, we also consider that the increased uncertainty seen since the disputed presidential election could become more protracted. This, in turn, could weigh on Belarus' economic growth and ability to access foreign capital markets over the next 12-18 months, putting pressure on the ratings.

We could lower the ratings on Belarus if we did not consider the government's access to foreign capital markets to be assured and if additional credit lines from bilateral lenders, such as Russia and China, proved insufficient to comfortably meet upcoming public debt redemptions. We could also lower the ratings if resident deposit withdrawals and conversions to foreign currency continued unchecked and depleted the central bank's foreign currency reserves, while presenting financial stability and contingent liability risks.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if lingering political uncertainty subsided with a clear way forward that contributed to Belarus' economic, fiscal, and financial sector stability.

(Originally published Sept. 12, 2020)

Table 8

Belarus
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 5.9 5.0 5.8 6.3 6.7 5.9 5.8 6.0 6.1
GDP growth (3.8) (2.5) 2.5 3.1 1.2 (2) 1.5 2.0 2.0
GDP per capita growth (4.0) (2.6) 2.6 3.3 1.9 (2) 1.5 2.0 2.0
Current account balance/GDP (3.2) (3.4) (1.7) 0.0 (2.0) (1.8) (1.6) (1.4) (1.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 163.3 163.6 143.4 128.5 125.9 124.5 128.5 130.1 130.7
Narrow net external debt/CAR 87.8 89.5 72.7 60.0 59.4 77.9 76.5 76.8 77.2
GG balance/GDP 1.4 1.5 3.0 4.0 2.5 (2.5) 0.0 1.0 1.0
GG net debt/GDP 30.1 33.1 30.9 27.2 23.8 35.2 37.2 37.9 37.5
CPI inflation 13.5 11.8 6.0 4.9 5.6 6.0 5.0 5.0 5.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 45.0 40.8 38.9 38.3 39.1 42.3 42.4 42.4 42.3
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Benin (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Sebastien Boreux, sebastien.boreux@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Benin, Oct. 23, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook indicates that we expect Benin's credit metrics will withstand the shock to public finances and economic activity from COVID-19. Once the pandemic abates, we expect high economic growth to resume, supported by the government action plan (PAG), an increase in public and private investments, as well as structural economic and budgetary reforms, including measures to improve the business environment, agricultural output, and tax collection.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if, following the pandemic, reforms boost economic growth to levels materially stronger than we forecast, reflecting a higher component of private-sector investment and activity; and net government debt as a share of GDP decreases beyond our projections.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if budgetary performance deteriorates, and reforms lag, leading to real GDP growth rates significantly weaker than our forecasts. This could occur if the pandemic's impact is more protracted than we anticipate; or if presidential elections in 2021 lead to larger overruns on public expenditure, or increased tax arrears by firms, including importers and at the state-owned enterprise level.

Benin's creditworthiness could also deteriorate if pressures on the West African CFA franc (XOF)-to-euro exchange rate materialize. A devaluation--which we do not expect--would immediately increase government debt to GDP across the monetary union and weigh considerably on WAEMU member state's fiscal performance.

(Originally published June 19, 2020)

Table 9

Benin
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 1.1 1.1 1.1 1.2 1.2 1.2 1.4 1.4 1.5
GDP growth 1.8 3.3 5.7 6.7 6.9 2.2 6.0 6.5 6.5
GDP per capita growth (1.1) 0.4 2.7 3.7 3.9 (0.6) 3.1 3.6 3.6
Current account balance/GDP (6.0) (3) (4.2) (4.6) (4.3) (4.5) (4.3) (4.3) (4.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 135.1 121.5 137.7 121.4 139.0 136.9 138.0 135.0 130.5
Narrow net external debt/CAR 32.4 50.1 49.5 79.2 83.6 98.1 91.5 88.8 85.8
GG balance/GDP (5.6) (4.3) (4.2) (2.9) (0.6) (3.8) (3.2) (2.6) (2.3)
GG net debt/GDP 22.1 28.9 32.8 32.4 31.2 34.0 34.9 34.9 34.5
CPI inflation 0.3 (0.6) 1.6 0.9 (0.9) 1.7 1.0 1.0 1.2
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 18.5 18.6 18.0 18.0 19.5 19.2 18.8 18.3 17.7
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Bosnia and Herzegovina (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Bosnia and Herzegovina 'B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Aug. 28, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 6
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the risks associated with COVID-19's effect on BiH's economy and fiscal and external metrics over the next 12 months against upside potential from implementing structural reforms and our expectation of stronger economic growth beyond 2020.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings on BiH if the economic and budgetary cost of the pandemic are materially higher than we currently project, putting the sustainability of the public debt burden at risk, given the country's fixed exchange rate regime and limited monetary policy flexibility. Ratings may come under pressure if the stability of the domestic financial system weakens substantially in a hypothetical scenario of prolonged deterioration in asset quality, or persistent deposit conversion to foreign currency. We could also lower the ratings if BiH implemented a debt payment moratorium that affects the timely and full service of its commercial debt, but this is not our baseline scenario.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings on BiH if domestic policy settings improved, and we saw a move toward less-confrontational and more consensus-based politics, oriented toward promoting economic growth and structural reforms, possibly underpinned by a full International Monetary Fund (IMF) program in addition to the current Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) arrangement already agreed with the IMF. We could also raise the ratings if economic growth strengthened beyond 2020.

(Originally published Aug. 28, 2020)

Table 10

Bosnia and Herzegovina
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 4.9 5.2 5.6 6.2 6.2 6.1 6.8 7.1 7.5
GDP growth 4.3 3.6 3.6 3.2 2.4 (6) 3.5 2.5 2.8
GDP per capita growth 5.9 5.0 4.7 4.0 3.2 (5.5) 4.0 3.0 3.3
Current account balance/GDP (4.9) (4.6) (4.7) (3.3) (3.0) (4.1) (3.8) (3.6) (3.0)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 140.3 133.7 128.8 126.7 129.2 133.7 132.5 133.1 132.6
Narrow net external debt/CAR 39.6 33.1 23.1 14.9 8.5 16.4 15.0 15.1 15.4
GG balance/GDP 0.6 1.2 2.5 2.2 1.9 (4.5) (2) 0.5 0.5
GG net debt/GDP 35.3 33.9 29.1 26.8 24.7 31.3 32.7 31.8 30.9
CPI inflation (1) (1.1) 1.2 1.4 0.6 (0.7) 1.2 1.4 1.4
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 51.4 51.1 52.3 52.4 53.4 55.2 54.0 54.3 54.3
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Botswana (BBB+/Negative/A-2)

  • Analyst: Samira Mensah, samira.mensah@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Botswana Outlook Revised To Negative On Rising And Protracted Fiscal And External Pressures; 'BBB+/A-2' Ratings Affirmed, Sept. 18, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 3
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects our view of anticipated higher pressures on Botswana's economic, external, and fiscal performance over the next two years, stemming from the impact of the global pandemic, notably on diamond exports.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings on Botswana if the fiscal trajectory remained weak, beyond the initial impact of the pandemic. This could happen if diamond prices and demand failed to recover in the next two years. In such a case, ongoing spending pressures could derail fiscal adjustments, and the current account deficit could widen beyond our current assumptions, potentially leading to gross external financing needs exceeding 100% of current account receipts (CARs) and usable reserves.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if Botswana is able to restore its fiscal balance to more manageable levels through fiscal discipline and an upturn in the global diamond market. If Botswana manages to prevent a further decline of external buffers, that could also support the ratings at their current levels and a stable outlook.

(Originally published Sept. 18, 2020)

Table 11

Botswana
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 6.8 7.2 7.9 8.3 8.0 6.9 7.0 7.2 7.5
GDP growth (1.7) 4.3 2.9 4.5 3.0 (9) 6.0 4.5 4.5
GDP per capita growth (3.2) 2.4 0.8 2.2 0.8 (10.8) 3.9 2.5 2.5
Current account balance/GDP 2.1 7.7 5.3 0.6 (7.6) (12.2) (8.4) (5.6) (2.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 54.7 53.0 54.8 60.4 69.3 72.5 78.5 81.0 80.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR (62.6) (52.8) (63.9) (54.6) (58.0) (46.9) (23.5) (14.6) (12.4)
GG balance/GDP (4.8) 0.7 (1.1) (4.7) (4.9) (8) (6) (1.8) 1.8
GG net debt/GDP (7.7) (3.3) (4.9) (2.1) 2.9 11.2 16.3 17.1 14.1
CPI inflation 3.0 2.8 3.3 3.2 2.8 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 35.2 31.4 31.4 32.2 33.5 38.5 37.9 38.4 38.5
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Bulgaria (BBB/Stable/A-2)

  • Analyst: Niklas Steinert, niklas.steinert@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Bulgaria Ratings Affirmed At 'BBB/A-2'; Outlook Stable, Nov. 27, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that Bulgaria's economy will rebound quickly following the pandemic. We expect no external or financial sector imbalances to emerge over the next two years. This should enable quick fiscal consolidation and curb the rise of public debt.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if Bulgaria's economic recovery coincides with quicker fiscal consolidation or a stronger external performance than we currently project. In the long run, we could raise the ratings on Bulgaria in the course of its accession to the eurozone.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the economic contraction proved deeper or the subsequent recovery was delayed. This would likely result in protracted fiscal consolidation and continuously rising net public debt over the next few years. Although unlikely over the medium term, we could also take a negative rating action if we observed increased imbalances in Bulgaria's financial sector.

(Originally published Nov. 27, 2020)

Table 12

Bulgaria
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 7.0 7.5 8.3 9.4 9.8 9.6 10.7 11.4 12.1
GDP growth 4.0 3.8 3.5 3.1 3.7 (4.5) 4.0 3.3 3.3
GDP per capita growth 4.6 4.5 4.3 3.9 4.4 (4.2) 4.4 3.7 3.7
Current account balance/GDP 0.1 3.2 3.5 1.0 3.0 0.5 0.4 (0.1) (0.4)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 118.6 107.3 99.6 103.9 102.0 106.4 104.2 105.5 106.5
Narrow net external debt/CAR (16.7) (24.7) (30.4) (32.4) (34.9) (40.1) (37.0) (38.2) (40.5)
GG balance/GDP (1.7) 0.1 1.1 2.0 1.9 (5.1) (5) (2.5) (1.5)
GG net debt/GDP 18.1 16.9 14.6 12.6 11.9 17.5 21.5 22.9 23.1
CPI inflation (1.1) (1.3) 1.2 2.6 2.5 0.6 1.3 2.3 2.3
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 57.0 54.4 52.9 53.7 54.0 57.5 57.2 56.7 56.3
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Burkina Faso (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Etienne Polle, etienne.polle@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Burkina Faso, Nov. 13, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our view that the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic will be temporary and will not lead to a long-lasting deterioration of economic growth trends and credit metrics. In line with the objectives of Burkina Faso's program with the IMF's and WAEMU's convergence criteria, the authorities will revert to their pre-crisis budgetary consolidation path. Meanwhile, we expect the escalating security crisis in the Sahel to have only a moderate impact on the country's economic and fiscal performance over the rating horizon.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings in the event that Burkina Faso proves unable to consolidate the institutional progress it has made since 2015, or if security risks escalate to the point of hindering the country's main export industries. Alternatively, we would consider lowering the ratings if the country's fiscal deficit widens beyond our expectations. We could also lower our ratings if pressures on the exchange rate of the West African CFA franc (XOF) to the euro were to emerge or if the WAEMU's international reserves fell significantly below our expectations.

Upside scenario

We would consider raising our ratings if Burkina Faso's fiscal policies continue to support declining government deficits, leading to a reduction in public debt and financing costs.

(Originally published May 16, 2020)

Table 13

Burkina Faso
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.9
GDP growth 3.9 6.0 6.1 6.9 5.7 (2) 4.0 5.5 6.0
GDP per capita growth 1.0 3.1 2.8 3.6 2.5 (5.0) 0.9 2.3 2.8
Current account balance/GDP (7.6) (6.1) (6.3) (4.1) (4.4) (3.5) (5.5) (5.3) (4.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 143.9 137.5 139.4 132.6 135.0 133.3 134.0 135.0 129.6
Narrow net external debt/CAR 60.0 44.2 37.2 47.6 50.0 58.6 60.5 62.3 63.3
GG balance/GDP (1.2) (2.9) (6.8) (4.3) (2.2) (5.5) (5.4) (4.3) (3.5)
GG net debt/GDP 25.9 25.5 27.2 32.0 37.4 42.7 46.1 47.5 47.7
CPI inflation 0.7 0.4 1.5 2.0 (3.2) 3.9 2.4 2.9 2.8
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 28.8 28.2 28.7 29.5 31.3 34.2 35.5 36.3 36.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Cameroon (B-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Etienne Polle, etienne.polle@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Cameroon, Oct. 9, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

Our stable outlook balances our view of Cameroon's robust economic growth prospects against risks stemming from a rising stock of external public debt and a volatile security situation in the Anglophone regions.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings if external imbalances and fiscal deficits increase beyond our expectations, leading to a decline in government liquid external assets and casting doubts on Cameroon's ability to service its debt.

Upside scenario

We would consider raising our ratings if Cameroon's fiscal policies support declining government deficits beyond the COVID-19 pandemic, and if external financing needs ease significantly, thanks to structurally lower current account deficits and a declining external debt stock. Alternatively, we could raise the ratings if Cameroon's security threats in the Anglophone areas and in the Far North region recede, and stability increases.

(Originally published April 11, 2020)

Table 14

Cameroon
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.3 1.4 1.4 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.6 1.6 1.7
GDP growth 5.7 4.7 3.6 4.1 3.7 (2.7) 3.2 3.5 3.5
GDP per capita growth 2.9 1.9 0.9 1.4 1.1 (5.2) 0.6 0.9 0.9
Current account balance/GDP (3.8) (3.2) (3.4) (3.5) (3.7) (5.8) (4.6) (3.8) (3.6)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 93.6 89.8 104.6 101.8 101.5 107.9 108.9 108.4 107.9
Narrow net external debt/CAR 39.7 68.4 76.2 82.1 89.1 144.1 138.3 135.2 131.8
GG balance/GDP (4.4) (6.1) (4.9) (2.6) (3.4) (4.5) (3.2) (3.1) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 19.7 23.4 24.3 28.9 32.7 37.7 39.4 41.0 42.5
CPI inflation 2.7 0.9 0.6 1.1 2.5 2.8 2.5 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 18.9 19.6 17.5 18.8 17.9 17.7 17.8 17.9 18.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Cape Verde (B/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Samuel Tileray, samuel.tileray@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Cape Verde Outlook Revised To Negative On Impact Of COVID-19; 'B/B' Ratings Affirmed, Aug. 28, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects that, within the next 12 months, the COVID-19 pandemic could significantly pressure Cape Verde's already large fiscal and external imbalances, beyond our current base-case scenario.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if we no longer believed Cape Verde's fiscal and current account balances would return to a more sustainable footing, after the pandemic subsides. This could result if, for example, a sustained recovery in tourism failed to materialize or if we perceived a longer-lasting weakening in consumers' appetite for long-haul travel.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if the government arrested the rise in public debt, and credibly placed the debt burden onto a downward path, for example through a renewed and sustained commitment to fiscal discipline. Moreover, such an action would likely hinge on an improved balance of payments performance, limiting the need to borrow externally, and allowing for the accumulation of foreign exchange (FX) reserves.

(Originally published Aug. 28, 2020)

Table 15

Cape Verde
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 3.0 3.1 3.3 3.6 3.6 3.3 3.7 3.9 4.1
GDP growth 1.0 4.7 3.7 4.5 5.7 (8.5) 6.2 4.1 4.4
GDP per capita growth (0.2) 3.4 2.5 3.3 4.5 (9.4) 5.0 3.0 3.3
Current account balance/GDP (3.2) (3.9) (7.9) (5.2) (0.3) (11.0) (8.5) (5.4) (3.9)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 145.5 135.8 137.6 137.4 128.7 148.3 154.1 149.9 142.7
Narrow net external debt/CAR 115.1 96.7 109.4 96.1 87.2 121.0 110.8 102.9 91.4
GG balance/GDP (4) (3.5) (3.1) (2.7) (1.8) (11.4) (8.8) (6) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 106.0 105.4 104.2 107.2 101.6 124.2 124.3 123.3 118.8
CPI inflation 0.1 (1.4) 0.8 1.3 1.1 0.5 0.5 1.5 1.8
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 63.6 63.1 64.6 62.8 61.3 71.6 68.6 67.3 65.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Democratic Republic of Congo (CCC+/Stable/C)

  • Analyst: Sebastien Boreux, sebastien.boreux@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Democratic Republic of Congo Outlook Revised To Stable On Higher External And Budgetary Pressures; Affirmed At 'CCC+/C', Aug. 1, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 6
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the adverse effects of COVID-19 on DRC's economy, budget, and balance of payments, with substantial emergency financial support expected from partners and relatively solid medium-term prospects, on the back of higher mining production, lower domestic tensions, and renewed relations with the international community.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if, following the pandemic, the government secures sufficient structural external financial support from international partners and continues to make payments on commercial debt on time and in full.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if budgetary and external tensions continue to increase and foreign-exchange reserves decrease beyond our projections, given the country's very low buffers. This could occur if COVID-19's impact is more protracted than we anticipate or if the current outbreaks of other infectious diseases start to materially affect the economy. We could also lower the ratings if domestic or security tensions escalate, threatening DRC's already-weak institutions and fragile economy.

(Originally published Aug. 1, 2020)

Table 16

Congo, D.R.
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.7
GDP growth 6.9 2.4 3.7 5.8 4.4 (2.6) 3.5 4.5 4.5
GDP per capita growth 3.4 (0.9) 0.4 2.5 1.1 (5.7) 0.2 1.2 1.2
Current account balance/GDP (3.9) (4.1) (3.3) (3.6) (3.6) (5.5) (4.3) (3.6) (3.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 103.9 106.3 108.1 108.3 109.8 115.0 116.4 113.8 111.5
Narrow net external debt/CAR 18.9 19.4 17.2 18.6 17.6 31.7 31.9 28.3 25.5
GG balance/GDP (0.3) (1.1) 0.3 (0.1) (0.6) (1.6) (0.8) (0.5) (0.2)
GG net debt/GDP 11.2 14.1 14.1 10.5 11.5 12.9 12.7 12.5 12.1
CPI inflation 0.7 2.9 33.9 33.2 5.5 14.0 9.0 7.0 5.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 6.5 7.8 5.8 6.4 7.2 7.0 6.6 6.3 6.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Congo-Brazzaville (CCC+/Stable/C)

  • Analyst: Sebastien Boreux, sebastien.boreux@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Congo-Brazzaville Downgraded To 'CCC+/C' On Lower Oil Prices; Outlook Stable, Sept. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances our expectation of improving oil prices and volumes from next year against ongoing institutional risks, high general government debt, and limited financial buffers.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the situation deteriorates beyond our expectations. This could occur if oil prices stay lower for longer or if the COVID-19 pandemic has a more protracted negative effect on Congo-Brazzaville's economy, further pressuring the country's public finances and external position.

Upside scenario

Conversely, we could raise our ratings if the government's fiscal position improves and financial buffers increase, for example, government assets or international reserves at the central bank.

(Originally published Sept. 4, 2020)

Table 17

Congo
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.9 1.6 1.8 2.3 2.1 1.4 1.6 1.7 1.7
GDP growth 4.8 (2.6) (2.7) 1.4 (1.1) (9.5) (2.2) 3.5 (0.2)
GDP per capita growth 2.2 (5.1) (5.2) (1.2) (3.6) (11.8) (4.7) 0.9 (2.7)
Current account balance/GDP (50.8) (60.9) (3.4) 7.9 8.3 (12.7) (5.3) (1.6) (1.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 102.0 162.9 118.5 105.1 103.0 141.8 134.3 125.4 121.5
Narrow net external debt/CAR 91.0 199.9 162.6 111.4 109.2 279.4 209.7 174.8 170.3
GG balance/GDP (11.2) (8.4) (4.5) 6.2 6.7 (5) (3) 1.0 1.0
GG net debt/GDP 38.1 88.5 105.5 84.0 89.1 141.8 129.1 117.8 115.3
CPI inflation 3.2 3.2 0.5 1.2 2.2 2.8 2.5 2.5 3.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 22.6 26.6 23.1 17.4 16.0 25.1 23.0 22.2 22.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Croatia (BBB-/Stable/A-3)

  • Analyst: Ludwig Heinz, ludwig.heinz@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Croatia 'BBB-/A-3' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Sept. 18, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The outlook is stable because we anticipate that Croatia's replenished external buffers and economic recovery prospects will offset risks for the country's balance of payments and fiscal performance resulting mainly from the COVID-19-induced hit to the substantial tourism sector.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings on Croatia if, contrary to our expectations, external financing pressures were to build or if public finances failed to recover over the coming two to three years, putting public debt on an upward trajectory.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings over the next two to three years if Croatia's economy, and thus its GDP per capita, expanded faster than we currently project. In the longer term, all else equal, the country's adoption of the euro would also be beneficial for the ratings.

(Originally published Sept. 18, 2020)

Table 18

Croatia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 11.8 12.4 13.5 15.0 14.9 13.8 15.5 16.4 17.1
GDP growth 2.4 3.5 3.4 2.8 2.9 (8.4) 5.6 3.5 2.6
GDP per capita growth 3.3 4.2 4.7 3.7 3.4 (8.0) 5.8 3.7 2.8
Current account balance/GDP 3.3 2.2 3.9 1.6 2.6 (1.0) (0.9) (0.9) (0.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 101.6 99.7 93.2 91.5 87.9 85.9 87.0 87.3 87.1
Narrow net external debt/CAR 90.8 71.4 58.4 40.1 29.6 38.6 29.8 27.3 24.2
GG balance/GDP (3.5) (0.9) 0.8 0.3 0.4 (7.8) (2.9) (2) (1.5)
GG net debt/GDP 76.0 74.5 71.3 68.5 65.2 78.8 76.8 75.2 73.5
CPI inflation (0.5) (1.1) 1.1 1.5 0.8 0.2 1.0 1.5 1.6
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 67.3 62.9 59.0 57.3 56.4 64.5 62.9 62.3 62.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Egypt (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Egypt 'B/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Nov. 6, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that the weakening of external and government debt metrics will be temporary, and gradually improve from 2022, supported by higher GDP and current account receipts (CARs).

Downside scenario

We could consider a negative rating action if the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Egypt's external position and economic activity is more severe or prolonged than expected, resulting in a substantial decline in foreign exchange reserves and reduced ability to service debt and interest payments. Rating pressure could also emerge if fiscal slippages, higher borrowing costs, or pronounced currency depreciation prevented Egypt's government debt-to-GDP ratio from declining after 2021.

Upside scenario

We could consider a positive rating action over the medium term if Egypt's economic expansion significantly outperforms our forecasts, or if Egypt's reform program materially narrows government and external financing needs, thereby reducing debt and reflecting a track record of stronger governance.

(Originally published Nov. 6, 2020)

Table 19

Egypt
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 3.7 3.7 2.5 2.6 3.1 3.6 3.8 4.2 4.6
GDP growth 4.4 4.4 4.2 5.3 5.6 3.6 2.5 4.8 5.4
GDP per capita growth 1.8 2.1 (0.4) 3.3 3.6 1.5 0.5 2.8 3.3
Current account balance/GDP (3.7) (6.0) (6.1) (2.4) (3.6) (3.1) (3.5) (2.7) (2.5)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 110.2 117.3 121.2 112.6 114.2 115.3 121.1 118.3 116.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR 27.9 60.4 67.6 68.8 79.7 105.2 124.8 111.8 100.6
GG balance/GDP (11.6) (13.7) (10.6) (9.6) (8.0) (7.0) (8) (7) (6.3)
GG net debt/GDP 78.7 84.7 88.7 81.6 75.0 77.7 80.7 79.8 77.9
CPI inflation 11.0 10.2 23.3 21.6 13.9 5.7 7.0 8.0 8.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 28.2 29.8 32.7 28.1 26.0 27.7 28.0 29.1 30.2
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Ethiopia (B/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Shokhrukh Temurov, shokhrukh.temurov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Ethiopia 'B/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Negative, Sept. 25, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects our view that Ethiopia's structurally weak fiscal and external positions might deteriorate further due to the COVID-19 pandemic's negative impact.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings over the next 6-12 months if Ethiopia's general government debt burden rose above our baseline forecasts, increasing refinancing risks. This could happen, for example, if the pandemic more adversely affected fiscal revenue collection, while fiscal expenditure was not sufficiently pared back in response; or if contingent liabilities related to Ethiopia's state-owned enterprises (SOEs) are realized on the government's balance sheet. Risks to debt sustainability would be exacerbated by sharper currency devaluation than we project.

The ratings might also come under pressure if rising external stress resulted in an extensive drawdown of Ethiopia's foreign exchange reserves, which remain among the lowest of rated sovereigns, amounting to about two months of current account payments.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if we thought that public debt vulnerabilities had been contained and external risks had subsided in line with our expectations. If implemented successfully, the government's ambitious reform agenda, which is supported by the IMF, could strengthen debt sustainability; reduce external vulnerabilities; and encourage stronger economic growth, investment, and exports.

(Originally published Sept. 25, 2020)

Table 20

Ethiopia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.7 0.8 0.9 0.9 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0
GDP growth 10.4 8.0 10.1 7.7 9.0 3.0 3.1 7.1 6.5
GDP per capita growth 7.8 5.5 7.5 5.3 6.7 0.6 0.7 4.6 4.0
Current account balance/GDP (13.5) (11.0) (9.9) (7.9) (7.4) (5.4) (6.5) (5.6) (5.6)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 174.1 164.0 172.2 160.8 160.1 156.4 169.5 164.3 158.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 159.5 168.1 190.7 186.9 200.4 216.8 255.8 232.5 219.7
GG balance/GDP (2.3) (1.9) (3.3) (3.0) (2.5) (3.0) (3.4) (2) (1.9)
GG net debt/GDP 21.0 22.8 25.5 28.3 26.5 29.2 31.1 30.0 29.3
CPI inflation 7.7 9.7 7.4 14.6 12.6 20.1 16.7 12.6 9.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 30.7 31.6 33.7 34.2 35.2 35.7 35.8 34.7 34.4
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Georgia (BB/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Aarti Sakhuja, aarti.sakhuja@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Georgia 'BB/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Aug. 28, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that:

Concessional borrowing from abroad will offset lost FX earnings and investment inflows in 2020 and prevent FX reserves from coming under pressure;

The economy will recover to 2019 levels by 2022; and

The government will consolidate public finances and government debt to GDP will decline from 2021.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next year if financing for Georgia's external deficit became less secure, putting reserves under pressure; if we believed economic growth prospects would be materially weaker for longer, endangering budgetary consolidation; or if institutional arrangements weakened and led to less predictable policymaking, hurting business confidence and growth prospects.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if Georgia's growth rates beyond 2020 eventually translated into higher income levels while its export profile diversified further, both in terms of product and geography.

(Originally published Aug. 28, 2020)

Table 21

Georgia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in '000) 4.0 4.1 4.4 4.7 4.7 4.3 4.3 4.5 4.8
GDP growth 3.0 2.9 4.8 4.8 5.0 (5) 4.0 4.5 4.5
GDP per capita growth 2.9 2.7 4.9 4.8 5.2 (4.8) 4.0 4.5 4.5
Current account balance/GDP (11.8) (12.5) (8.0) (6.8) (5.5) (10.3) (7.9) (6.4) (5.5)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 116.8 122.0 117.5 117.5 115.3 123.3 119.0 118.0 117.8
Narrow net external debt/CAR 95.2 105.1 90.8 83.5 80.6 110.7 108.9 103.9 98.6
GG balance/GDP (2.3) (2.7) (3.0) (2.1) (3.0) (9) (7.6) (4.5) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 34.6 37.9 37.0 37.2 38.6 53.0 57.8 58.7 58.2
CPI inflation 4.0 2.1 6.0 2.6 4.9 5.5 3.0 3.5 3.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 46.9 54.1 54.9 59.6 65.0 68.4 68.5 69.8 74.5
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Ghana (B-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Tatonga G. Rusike, tatonga.rusike@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Ghana Long-Term Rating Lowered To 'B-' From 'B' On Fiscal Deterioration; Outlook Stable, Sept. 11, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances risks from fiscal and external financing pressures against the country's strong medium-term economic growth prospects.

Downside scenario

We could lower the rating in the next six to 12 months if we saw further deterioration of Ghana's fiscal metrics, either due to recurring wide fiscal deficits or the materialization of contingent liabilities in the financial or energy sectors. Downward pressure on the ratings could also materialize should external pressures build--for example, because of wider current account deficits or accelerated nonresident outflows, eroding Ghana's useable foreign exchange reserves.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings should Ghana implement faster fiscal consolidation measures in order to alleviate pressure on public finances, without jeopardizing the government's ability to maintain balanced economic growth.

(Originally published Sept. 11, 2020)

Table 22

Ghana
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.8 1.9 2.0 2.2 2.2 2.2 2.2 2.3 2.5
GDP growth 2.2 3.5 8.1 6.3 6.5 1.0 5.0 5.1 5.1
GDP per capita growth (0.1) 1.2 5.8 4.0 4.2 (1.1) 2.8 2.9 2.9
Current account balance/GDP (5.7) (5.2) (3.4) (3.1) (2.7) (4.2) (3.1) (3.4) (3.4)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 125.1 131.1 122.4 119.7 125.3 126.6 121.4 122.1 122.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR 128.1 135.2 125.9 118.8 102.4 122.9 116.6 122.1 123.9
GG balance/GDP (5.0) (10.2) (4.8) (7.0) (7.4) (13.5) (7.5) (6) (5.5)
GG net debt/GDP 52.3 52.8 51.3 54.1 58.5 67.3 68.6 68.0 67.0
CPI inflation 17.2 17.5 12.4 9.8 8.4 10.0 9.0 9.0 9.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 16.1 15.3 15.3 12.6 13.2 12.6 12.4 12.1 11.9
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Hungary (BBB/Stable/A-2)

  • Analyst: Niklas Steinert, niklas.steinert@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Hungary 'BBB/A-2' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Remains Stable, Aug. 14, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 3
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook represents our view that Hungary's economy will recover from 2021 onward, enabling the authorities to resume fiscal control. Our baseline expectation is that Hungary's net public debt to GDP returns to a downward path beyond 2020.

Downside scenario

Pressures could build on the rating if, contrary to our expectations, the economy fails to recover from this year's global recession. Such a scenario could require substantial fiscal support for longer than we currently forecast, potentially permanently weakening public finances and increasing public debt levels over the next few years. We could also lower the rating if we observe rising pressure on Hungary's balance-of-payments performance with external liquidity deteriorating significantly beyond our expectations.

Upside scenario

We could consider a positive rating action if the speed of Hungary's economic recovery exceeds our current expectations, or if the authorities consolidate public finances faster than we currently project, for example through recurrent government surpluses.

(Originally published Aug. 14, 2020)

Table 23

Hungary
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 12.7 13.1 14.6 16.4 16.7 15.7 16.5 17.2 17.7
GDP growth 3.8 2.1 4.3 5.4 4.6 (6.1) 4.8 2.8 2.1
GDP per capita growth 4.1 2.4 4.7 5.6 4.6 (6.0) 4.9 2.9 2.2
Current account balance/GDP 2.4 4.5 2.0 0.3 (0.3) (1.5) (1.0) (1.6) (1.9)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 102.0 99.7 103.7 105.1 102.9 103.0 101.0 100.4 100.2
Narrow net external debt/CAR 39.0 32.3 30.4 22.3 22.1 26.9 24.1 22.9 22.5
GG balance/GDP (2.0) (1.8) (2.4) (2.1) (2.1) (7.3) (4) (2.5) (1.8)
GG net debt/GDP 73.1 70.6 69.3 65.3 62.5 73.0 72.0 70.8 69.2
CPI inflation 0.1 0.5 2.4 2.9 3.4 3.6 3.3 2.9 2.9
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 41.8 41.1 38.5 38.7 40.3 43.1 42.9 42.6 42.5
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Iraq (B-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Iraq Ratings Affirmed at 'B-/B'; Outlook Stable, Aug. 21, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 6
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our view that Iraq's foreign exchange reserves remain sufficient to support external debt-servicing capacity over the next 12 months. It also assumes that Iraq will be able to moderate the adverse effects of this year's oil price shock with expenditure-side measures and meet its domestic financing needs largely through indirect borrowing from the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI).

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if Iraq's already large twin deficits significantly worsen, for instance due to increased government spending or a fall in oil revenues, placing pressure on the exchange-rate regime and foreign-currency reserves. Furthermore, Iraq's domestic political landscape and external security backdrop remain unpredictable. We could consider a downgrade if we perceived that weaknesses in the sovereign's institutional framework had reduced the government's ability or willingness to service debt.

Upside scenario

We do not expect to raise the ratings over the next 12 months. That said, we could upgrade Iraq in the medium term if higher-than-expected non-oil growth, for instance from reinvigorated reconstruction efforts, boosted Iraq's economic growth and its GDP per capita. Improvements to the government's fiscal position, including increasing revenue diversification and containing the public sector wage bill would also support a higher rating.

(Originally published Aug. 21, 2020)

Table 24

Iraq
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 5.0 4.8 5.2 5.8 6.0 4.1 4.7 5.0 5.4
GDP growth 2.5 15.2 (2.5) (0.6) 4.4 (11.5) 6.5 4.0 3.5
GDP per capita growth (0.9) 11.9 (4.9) (2.8) 2.1 (13.5) 4.1 1.7 1.2
Current account balance/GDP (1.6) 1.2 7.6 15.3 6.7 (10.3) (2.4) (0.7) 3.1
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 104.7 105.1 105.0 73.7 82.1 137.6 185.9 197.8 173.7
Narrow net external debt/CAR 2.0 23.1 19.2 (7.2) (17.5) 4.3 10.8 10.9 4.2
GG balance/GDP (12.8) (13.9) (1.6) 7.9 (4.7) (19) (8) (7) (6)
GG net debt/GDP 46.9 55.5 49.6 33.2 36.5 70.5 68.2 70.3 69.8
CPI inflation 1.4 (0.7) 0.2 0.4 (0.2) 1.0 2.0 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 12.8 12.9 12.0 9.5 9.6 14.2 12.7 12.4 11.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Israel (AA-/Stable/A-1+)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Israel Ratings Affirmed At 'AA-/A-1+'; Outlook Stable, Nov. 13, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 1
  • External assessment: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 2
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook on Israel balances pandemic-related risks over the next 18-24 months against the country's resilient economy and strong balance of payments position. We project that Israel's net external asset position will remain about 45% of GDP through 2023, providing the economy with substantial buffers in the face of a fraught external environment.

Downside scenario

We could take a negative rating action if the economic downturn proved deeper and longer than expected, leading to a more substantial deterioration of public finances than we currently forecast. Pressure on the ratings could also build if, beyond immediate pandemic-related effects, Israel lacked a medium-term fiscal consolidation plan and net general government debt kept rising--as opposed to our current forecast that it will stabilize at under 80% of GDP. This could happen, for instance, if domestic political uncertainty and a fragmented government made it difficult to agree fiscal priorities.

Upside scenario

A positive rating action could stem from fiscal outturns being materially stronger than our current projections or a major improvement in the Middle East's security environment.

(Originally published Nov. 13, 2020)

Table 25

Israel
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 35.8 37.3 40.5 41.7 43.6 42.2 44.3 46.0 48.2
GDP growth 2.3 3.8 3.6 3.5 3.5 (5) 4.5 3.5 3.5
GDP per capita growth 0.2 1.8 1.6 1.5 1.5 (6.8) 2.6 1.6 1.6
Current account balance/GDP 5.4 3.7 2.9 2.7 3.4 3.6 3.4 3.1 2.8
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 70.4 68.9 68.8 66.3 64.9 62.0 57.2 57.5 57.6
Narrow net external debt/CAR (34.6) (41.2) (54.1) (46.6) (51.7) (66.4) (62.1) (62.3) (62.3)
GG balance/GDP (1.5) (1.9) (2.1) (4.3) (4.5) (12) (7.5) (4.2) (4)
GG net debt/GDP 61.8 60.0 58.4 58.8 58.6 73.0 77.0 77.3 77.4
CPI inflation (0.6) (0.5) 0.2 0.8 0.8 (0.6) 0.5 1.5 1.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 70.8 70.1 70.3 71.3 70.7 75.3 74.2 74.1 74.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Jordan (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Jordan 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Remains Stable, Sept. 11, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances our expectation that, over the next 12 months, donor funding will continue to support the government's financing needs and keep debt-servicing costs reasonably low, against the risk that the fiscal performance is significantly weaker than our current projections.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings on Jordan if we were to project much higher debt accumulation by the central government or state-owned enterprises, which could affect our view on the government's institutional ability to maintain sustainable public finances. We could also lower the ratings if funding sources became strained, for example if currently strong bilateral and multilateral donor support were to diminish.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if Jordan's external imbalances narrowed sharply and foreign investment were to rebound, boosting foreign exchange (FX) reserves. A positive rating action would also hinge on a substantial reduction in net government debt levels and a notable improvement in growth prospects, spurred by government structural reforms, for example in the energy sector.

(Originally published Sept. 11, 2020)

Table 26

Jordan
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 4.0 4.0 4.1 4.1 4.2 3.9 4.0 4.0 4.1
GDP growth 2.6 2.1 2.1 1.9 2.0 (5.5) 2.7 2.3 2.5
GDP per capita growth (5.5) (0.4) (0.5) (0.6) (0.4) (7.6) 0.4 0.0 0.2
Current account balance/GDP (9.2) (9.8) (10.8) (7.0) (2.7) (8.0) (6.4) (5.1) (4.9)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 145.8 148.7 157.7 150.6 150.4 184.1 182.9 180.5 180.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 16.0 21.9 30.4 42.0 41.1 73.0 72.8 72.6 74.3
GG balance/GDP (0.7) (0.1) 0.5 0.9 (0.6) (5) (3) (1.5) (0.7)
GG net debt/GDP 68.5 68.3 67.8 68.7 72.6 82.7 85.3 83.9 82.5
CPI inflation (0.9) (0.8) 3.3 4.5 0.8 0.5 1.5 2.0 2.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 71.0 76.5 81.1 82.9 82.1 92.7 94.7 97.2 99.2
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Kazakhstan (BBB-/Stable/A-3)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Kazakhstan, Sept. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

S&P Global Ratings' outlook on Kazakhstan is stable, because we expect the government and external balance sheets will remain strong over the next two years. We also expect continuity of policymaking.

Downside scenario

A prolonged and sharp fall in oil prices or production beyond our expectations could put the ratings under pressure over the next two years, if it led Kazakhstan's external performance to deteriorate, for example, should gross external financing needs exceed 100% of current account receipts plus usable reserves. We could also consider a downgrade if destabilizing factors re-emerged, such as a spike in dollarization of resident deposits.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings over the next two years if we see significant and tangible devolution of power to the cabinet and parliament along the lines suggested by the March 2017 constitutional amendments, which could support an improvement in policymaking predictability, in our view.

A meaningful improvement in the health of the banking sector, for example, supported by further advances in regulatory oversight or improvements in corporate governance, could also improve our view on government and monetary policy effectiveness.

(Originally published March 27, 2020)

Table 27

Kazakhstan
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 10.4 7.7 9.2 9.8 9.6 8.8 9.0 9.5 9.9
GDP growth 1.2 1.1 4.1 4.1 4.5 (2.2) 3.9 3.6 3.9
GDP per capita growth (1.7) (0.3) 2.7 2.8 3.2 (3.4) 2.6 2.3 2.6
Current account balance/GDP (3.3) (5.9) (3.1) (0.1) (3.6) (4.9) (3.2) (3.1) (2.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 109.9 100.9 94.3 90.2 95.2 96.8 95.6 97.4 98.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR (55.6) (64.4) 1.7 (37.0) (36.7) (44.3) (37.9) (36.0) (35.9)
GG balance/GDP (8.5) (4.0) (4.0) (1.2) (0.5) (8.7) (1.7) (0.5) 0.6
GG net debt/GDP (38.6) (25.7) (3.3) (14.3) (11.5) (6.5) (4.5) (4.4) (5.9)
CPI inflation 6.6 14.6 7.4 6.0 5.3 7.7 7.0 6.0 5.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 42.9 37.1 28.3 25.3 24.0 25.2 23.3 22.1 21.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Kenya (B+/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Ravi Bhatia, ravi.bhatia@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Kenya Outlook Revised To Negative On COVID-19-Related Fiscal And External Pressures; 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed, July 14, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects Kenya's deteriorating fiscal and external position following the effects of COVID-19-related disruptions on the economy and fiscal metrics. The negative outlook also reflects the risk of wider external financing gaps if funding from official lenders is not as forthcoming as we forecast.

Downside scenario

The ratings could also come under downward pressure if the ultimate economic fallout from the pandemic, and/or weaker policy momentum, derailed Kenya's efforts to curb its twin deficits, pushing external debt up, and/or weakening external liquidity beyond our current projections.

Upside scenario

We could revise our outlook to stable if we see a significant and sustained improvement in Kenya's fiscal and external accounts. We could also revise our outlook to stable if Kenya reverts to strong GDP growth and fiscal consolidation more rapidly than expected, which would in turn help address debt vulnerabilities.

(Originally published July 14, 2020)

Table 28

Kenya
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.3 1.4 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.8 1.8 2.0 2.0
GDP growth 5.7 5.9 4.8 6.3 5.4 1.0 4.0 5.7 5.6
GDP per capita growth 3.1 3.4 2.4 3.9 3.0 (1.3) 1.7 3.3 3.2
Current account balance/GDP (6.9) (5.8) (7.2) (5.8) (5.8) (5.9) (4.9) (5.4) (5.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 124.1 125.9 133.7 134.7 137.1 141.5 137.8 139.2 134.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR 93.1 129.3 139.2 136.4 168.2 192.5 186.4 185.0 189.8
GG balance/GDP (8.0) (7.4) (8.4) (6.7) (7.3) (7.9) (7.9) (6.5) (5.5)
GG net debt/GDP 41.3 45.3 45.9 48.1 52.5 60.0 62.7 62.9 62.1
CPI inflation 6.6 6.3 8.0 4.7 5.2 5.0 5.1 5.1 5.2
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 42.0 40.2 36.1 34.2 28.9 28.4 27.5 26.8 26.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Kuwait (AA-/Negative/A-1+)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Kuwait Outlook Revised to Negative on Continued Depletion of Fiscal Liquidity Buffer; 'AA-/A-1+' Ratings Affirmed, July 17, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 3
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook primarily reflects our view of risks stemming from fiscal pressure, including the likely depletion of the GRF, the government's main source of budget funding, while alternative financing arrangements are not yet in place.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next two years if Kuwait's institutional settings prevent the government from finding a sustainable long-term solution to its funding needs. In an extreme case, an insufficient policy response could leave Kuwait facing a hard fiscal budget constraint, potentially resulting in a disorderly expenditure adjustment that could inflict long-term damage on the Kuwaiti economy.

We could also lower the ratings if broader reform efforts, such as taxation and labor market changes, and measures to diversify the economy remain sluggish, increasing the burden on Kuwait's fiscal and balance-of payments metrics beyond 2020. Additionally, ratings could come under pressure if we consider that Kuwait's monetary policy flexibility has reduced or regional geopolitical tensions materially deteriorate, potentially disrupting key trade routes.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if the authorities swiftly address immediate and medium-term funding constraints. Wide-ranging political and economic reforms enhancing institutional effectiveness and improving long-term economic diversification would also support the ratings.

(Originally published July 17, 2020)

Table 29

Kuwait
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 27.0 24.8 26.8 30.3 28.6 23.2 25.7 28.1 31.3
GDP growth 0.6 2.9 (4.7) 1.3 0.4 (7) 0.0 8.0 5.5
GDP per capita growth (2.9) (1.1) (6.6) (1.4) (1.5) (3.1) 1.0 9.1 6.6
Current account balance/GDP 3.5 (4.6) 8.0 14.2 16.5 (6.6) (0.8) 2.4 7.2
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 124.6 145.8 117.3 109.3 113.5 172.1 157.3 151.9 145.9
Narrow net external debt/CAR (633.3) (682.1) (601.3) (519.6) (565.7) (902.5) (777.9) (711.7) (634.2)
GG balance/GDP 11.4 10.3 12.6 16.6 11.9 (2.1) 5.7 14.2 19.9
GG net debt/GDP (477.4) (489.5) (452.4) (410.4) (444.1) (565.7) (524.7) (500.1) (473.5)
CPI inflation 3.7 3.5 1.5 0.6 1.1 1.5 1.5 2.2 2.2
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 101.5 114.4 105.8 92.0 101.5 130.7 123.5 117.8 110.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Lebanon (SD/SD)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Several Lebanon Bonds Downgraded To 'D' On Missed Payment; 'CC/C' Local Currency Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Negative, Aug. 21, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 6
Outlook: --

The Lebanese government defaulted on its foreign currency debt obligations in March 2020. We do not assign outlooks to 'SD' or 'D' ratings because they express a condition and not a forward-looking opinion of default probability.

Downside scenario

The negative outlook on the local currency rating reflects that the government will likely decide to restructure its local currency debt as part of a broader restructuring program.

We could lower the local currency sovereign ratings to 'SD' if the government signals that it will restructure local currency debt in addition to the Eurobonds.

Upside scenario

We could raise the local currency ratings if we believed a distressed exchange of Lebanon's local currency commercial debt had become less likely. This could be the case if, for example, significant donor funding support were to materialize, allowing the government to implement immediate and transformative reforms, or if meaningful reforms led to sustained, strong economic growth.

We would raise our long-term foreign currency sovereign issuer credit rating from 'SD' and issue ratings from 'D' upon completion of the government's bond restructuring. The ratings would reflect Lebanon's post-restructuring creditworthiness, considering the resulting debt burden and macroeconomic policy prospects. Our post-restructuring ratings tend to be in the 'CCC' or low 'B' categories, depending on the sovereign's new debt structure and capacity to support that debt.

(Originally published Aug. 21, 2020)

Table 30

Lebanon
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 8.5 8.5 8.7 8.0 7.8 6.8 7.2 7.4 7.7
GDP growth 0.2 1.5 0.9 (1.9) (6.9) (30) 1.0 1.0 1.0
GDP per capita growth (4.0) (1.1) (0.4) (13.0) (6.9) (30.0) 1.1 1.1 1.1
Current account balance/GDP (21.2) (24.6) (27.2) (27.9) (20.5) (5.6) (11.2) (12.8) (13.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 126.5 138.9 139.0 145.7 161.9 165.9 236.7 271.2 295.6
Narrow net external debt/CAR (61.3) (68.1) (49.4) (26.2) (7.7) 11.6 20.8 33.7 45.2
GG balance/GDP (7.9) (9.7) (7.1) (11.4) (10.9) (12) (10) (9.6) (9)
GG net debt/GDP 112.0 117.2 119.3 126.0 139.4 170.6 171.7 175.2 178.1
CPI inflation (3.8) (0.8) 4.4 6.1 2.9 70.0 9.0 6.0 6.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 96.2 99.7 100.6 94.2 81.9 74.9 72.7 73.3 73.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Montenegro (B+/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Gabriel Forss, gabriel.forss@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Montenegro 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Negative, Sept. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 6
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook primarily reflects risks that the COVID-19 pandemic will cause more extensive and permanent economic and fiscal damage than we currently project.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings on Montenegro if the economic fallout from COVID-19 proves more substantial than we currently project, resulting in a loss of productive capacity and a weakening fiscal position. Ratings pressure could also build if, contrary to our expectations, the government's fiscal consolidation efforts beyond 2020 prove insufficient to prevent an upward debt trajectory. We could also lower the ratings if a material deterioration in asset quality or heightened liquidity constraints undermine the stability of the country's banking system, but this is not our baseline scenario.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if Montenegro's economic and fiscal prospects recover in line with our expectations, putting its fiscal debt trajectory back on a firm downward path.

(Originally published Sept. 4, 2020)

Table 31

Montenegro
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 6.5 7.0 7.8 8.9 8.8 8.1 9.1 9.5 10.0
GDP growth 3.4 3.0 4.7 5.1 3.6 (9.5) 5.0 3.0 2.8
GDP per capita growth 3.4 2.9 4.7 5.1 3.7 (9.6) 5.0 3.0 2.8
Current account balance/GDP (11.0) (16.2) (16.1) (17) (15.2) (12.7) (15.3) (15.4) (17.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 131.9 137.5 131.8 130.7 122.9 116.9 130.0 132.0 138.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 157.0 154.3 165.2 150.6 157.2 215.9 193.6 192.9 199.1
GG balance/GDP (8.3) (3.6) (5.3) (3.9) (2.0) (10) (5) (3) (2.5)
GG net debt/GDP 62.7 61.1 60.1 61.0 61.8 79.3 80.6 79.9 78.7
CPI inflation 1.5 (0.3) 2.4 2.6 0.4 0.0 0.6 1.5 1.6
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 51.3 50.1 49.9 50.1 50.9 53.4 52.7 52.8 52.9
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Morocco (BBB-/Negative/A-3)

  • Analyst: Marco Mrsnik, marco.mrsnik@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Morocco Outlook Revised To Negative On COVID-19-Induced Rise In Debt And External Financing Needs; Ratings Affirmed, Oct. 2, 2020
Rating score snapshot:
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 3
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook signifies that we could lower our ratings on Morocco within the next 24 months if net government debt levels fail to decline despite the expected economic rebound; real GDP growth rates significantly undershoot our projections; or the economy's gross external financing needs continue rising.

We could revise the outlook to stable if the budgetary consolidation prospects materially improve, leading to a clear decline in government debt.

An outlook revision to stable could also occur if the ongoing transition toward a more flexible exchange rate regime that targets inflation significantly bolsters Morocco's external competitiveness and resilience to macroeconomic external shocks.

(Originally published Oct. 2, 2020)

Table 32

Morocco
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 2.9 2.9 3.1 3.3 3.3 3.0 3.2 3.3 3.5
GDP growth 4.5 1.1 4.2 3.0 2.5 (5.5) 4.5 3.8 3.5
GDP per capita growth 3.1 (0.3) 2.9 1.7 1.3 (6.6) 3.3 2.6 2.3
Current account balance/GDP (2.1) (4.1) (3.4) (5.3) (4.1) (6.4) (5.3) (4.1) (3.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 93.7 92.4 92.7 94.5 94.8 97.1 99.0 99.9 99.7
Narrow net external debt/CAR 32.7 34.2 31.4 30.8 30.8 41.1 39.7 37.0 33.4
GG balance/GDP (4.2) (4.5) (3.5) (3.8) (4.1) (7.7) (5) (3.8) (3.3)
GG net debt/GDP 47.0 48.9 52.8 54.3 55.1 65.9 66.9 67.0 66.9
CPI inflation 1.6 1.6 0.8 1.9 0.2 0.7 1.0 1.0 1.3
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 77.9 79.0 76.8 75.6 75.4 82.9 81.4 80.5 79.7
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Mozambique (CCC+/Stable/C)

  • Analyst: Tatonga G. Rusike, tatonga.rusike@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Mozambique 'CCC+/C' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Oct. 23, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the risks associated with large external and fiscal deficits against our expectation of a rebound in economic growth next year, supported by large investments in the extractive sectors.

We could lower the ratings if Mozambique's economic performance were to weaken substantially. For example, due to a sharp increase in security risks related to the insurgency in the Cabo Delgado province in northern Mozambique, which could negatively affect the large gas projects in that region.

We could consider raising the ratings if we observe significant improvement in economic performance or the fiscal or external positions against our base-case assumptions.

(Originally published Oct. 23, 2020)

Table 33

Mozambique
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.6 0.4 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5
GDP growth 6.7 3.8 3.7 3.4 2.3 1.0 5.5 5.5 5.5
GDP per capita growth 3.7 0.9 0.8 0.5 (0.7) (1.9) 2.5 2.5 2.5
Current account balance/GDP (37.4) (32.2) (19.6) (30.3) (19.8) (24.9) (24.6) (23.7) (22.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 170.4 173.5 151.7 160.4 164.1 177.4 189.8 193.9 193.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 290.8 357.2 263.8 293.8 286.6 401.5 410.6 411.0 408.8
GG balance/GDP (4.1) (8.0) (6.5) (8.6) (3.1) (7) (5) (5) (5)
GG net debt/GDP 76.9 96.6 76.3 77.4 72.0 92.9 92.2 91.1 90.1
CPI inflation 3.6 19.9 15.1 3.9 2.8 3.0 5.0 5.0 5.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 36.0 37.4 28.7 26.3 26.0 25.4 24.4 23.3 22.3
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Nigeria (B-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Ravi Bhatia, ravi.bhatia@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Nigeria Long-Term Rating Affirmed At 'B-'; Outlook Stable, Aug. 28, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects that, despite the deterioration in economic, fiscal, and external performance, funding from official lenders will partially alleviate pressures on Nigeria's FX reserves and support commercial debt-repayment capacity over the next 12 months.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings if Nigeria experiences significantly stronger economic performance than we currently expect, or if external financing pressures prove to be contained, while fiscal deficits reduce faster than we project.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if we saw increasing risks to Nigeria's capacity to repay commercial obligations, either because of declining external liquidity or a continued reduction in fiscal flexibility. This could occur, for instance, if we see significantly higher fiscal deficits or debt-servicing needs, as well as sharply reduced FX reserves.

(Originally published Aug. 28, 2020)

Table 34

Nigeria
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 2.7 2.1 1.8 1.8 2.0 1.8 1.8 1.8 1.8
GDP growth 2.7 (1.6) 0.8 1.9 2.2 (3.8) 1.9 2.2 2.2
GDP per capita growth (0.0) (4.2) (1.8) (0.7) (0.4) (6.2) (0.7) (0.4) (0.4)
Current account balance/GDP (3.2) 0.7 3.0 1.1 (4.2) (4.4) (1.7) (0.2) 0.1
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 95.7 80.6 73.6 88.4 100.7 120.3 119.9 115.7 116.1
Narrow net external debt/CAR (2.5) (2.4) 14.0 12.5 40.3 77.9 73.1 73.6 75.6
GG balance/GDP (3.5) (4.0) (5.4) (4.3) (5.0) (5.5) (4.5) (4.5) (4)
GG net debt/GDP 11.9 15.1 33.2 36.6 38.0 39.1 41.0 42.8 43.8
CPI inflation 9.0 15.7 16.5 12.1 11.4 15.0 13.0 11.0 9.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 13.5 15.4 13.3 11.3 11.5 11.4 10.8 10.4 10.4
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

North Macedonia (BB-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: North Macedonia 'BB-/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Sept. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the disruptive effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on North Macedonia's economy and fiscal and external metrics over the next year, against potential upside from strengthening institutional arrangements and structural reform implementation as part of EU accession negotiations, as well as stronger growth beyond 2020.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings on North Macedonia if the ultimate economic and budgetary costs of the pandemic are materially higher than we currently project, and erode the available fiscal space, given the constraints of the exchange-rate regime. Downside pressure could also build if, rather than stabilizing, net general government debt continues to grow as a proportion of GDP over the medium term. The ratings could also come under pressure if domestic financial-system stability weakens substantially in a hypothetical scenario of sustained deterioration in asset quality or persistent deposit conversion to foreign currency.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings on North Macedonia if timely reform implementation, for instance as part of EU accession negotiations, strengthened its institutional arrangements and improved its economic prospects.

(Originally published Sept. 4, 2020)

Table 35

North Macedonia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 4.9 5.2 5.5 6.1 6.1 5.9 6.6 6.9 7.3
GDP growth 3.9 2.9 1.1 2.7 3.6 (6) 3.5 3.2 3.2
GDP per capita growth 3.7 2.7 1.0 2.6 3.5 (6.1) 3.4 3.1 3.1
Current account balance/GDP (1.9) (2.9) (0.9) (0.1) (3.3) (4.4) (2.9) (2.5) (1.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 108.3 109.9 106.4 109.4 112.1 116.8 113.3 114.2 113.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 26.9 28.3 32.6 24.3 23.2 32.3 30.5 30.5 29.3
GG balance/GDP (3.4) (2.7) (2.8) (1.1) (2.1) (7.5) (5) (3.8) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 36.4 38.6 40.4 39.5 40.9 51.4 54.6 56.1 56.4
CPI inflation (0.3) (0.2) 1.4 1.5 0.8 1.1 1.5 1.5 1.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 51.1 48.1 48.8 49.2 49.3 54.2 54.7 54.9 55.2
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Oman (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Zahabia S. Gupta, zahabia.gupta@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Oman Downgraded to 'B+' On Rising Net Debt Levels; Outlook Stable, Oct. 16, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances Oman's considerable fiscal and external pressures against its reasonably high fiscal buffers. We expect the increase in net debt to remain elevated until 2023. However, the pace of accumulation should significantly decelerate from 2021 onward, on the back of higher oil prices and the government's fiscal reform plan.

Downside scenario

We could consider a negative rating action over the next 12 months if we saw risks to fiscal reform implementation, which could signal reduced government capability and willingness to maintain sustainable public finances, and result in external financing needs increasing beyond our current expectations. We could also lower the ratings if we viewed the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries as less likely to provide extraordinary support to Oman in the event of financial distress.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings if Oman demonstrates that it can sustainably reduce net government debt levels, or if growth prospects improve significantly more than expected.

(Originally published Oct. 16, 2020)

Table 36

Oman
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 16.5 14.8 15.5 17.3 16.5 14.5 15.5 16.2 17.4
GDP growth 4.6 5.1 0.4 0.9 (0.8) (5) 2.2 3.5 2.0
GDP per capita growth 0.5 (1.0) (2.9) 0.0 (1.2) (0.0) 0.2 3.0 1.5
Current account balance/GDP (16.0) (19.2) (15.6) (5.4) (5.4) (14.5) (10.9) (9.8) (7.4)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 128.2 165.2 142.9 126.3 122.5 143.3 146.6 147.7 135.6
Narrow net external debt/CAR (78.2) (21.6) 18.9 24.5 36.4 68.7 73.6 79.8 79.3
GG balance/GDP (17.6) (21.1) (13.9) (8.6) (8.9) (18.1) (11.3) (7.5) (4.7)
GG net debt/GDP (58.9) (29.1) (10.7) (5.8) (3.1) 15.0 26.3 33.9 37.4
CPI inflation 0.1 1.1 1.6 0.9 0.1 (1) 2.5 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 75.6 86.4 85.6 80.5 82.9 102.7 99.8 100.7 98.9
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Poland (A-/Stable/A-2)

  • Analyst: Karen Vartapetov, karen.vartapetov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Poland 'A-/A-2' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Oct. 2, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 2
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects the balance between macroeconomic risks stemming from COVID-19 and the buffers provided by the country's strong external and government balance sheets.

Downside scenario

The ratings could come under pressure if the impact of the pandemic materially weakened Poland's economic recovery and medium-term growth prospects, also leading to the government's fiscal position deteriorating significantly beyond our expectations. Ratings downside could also materialize in case of materially weaker EU transfers to Poland, for instance as a result of political tensions between Poland and EU authorities. The crystallization of fiscal contingent liabilities from emergency policy measures or the government's increasing share of the financial system could also lead to a negative rating action.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if, following the temporary shock, Poland's strong economic performance were to resume and boost income levels without creating external imbalances.

(Originally published Oct. 2, 2020)

Table 37

Poland
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 12.6 12.5 13.9 15.5 15.7 15.3 16.2 16.9 17.4
GDP growth 4.2 3.1 4.8 5.4 4.5 (3.0) 3.8 4.2 3.0
GDP per capita growth 4.3 3.3 4.8 5.3 4.6 (3.0) 3.8 4.2 3.0
Current account balance/GDP (0.9) (0.8) (0.4) (1.3) 0.5 3.0 0.8 (1.7) (3.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 90.7 90.5 90.0 92.2 88.5 82.7 83.5 85.6 88.1
Narrow net external debt/CAR 56.6 48.7 50.1 36.9 31.0 27.6 22.1 21.1 23.4
GG balance/GDP (2.6) (2.4) (1.5) (0.2) (0.7) (9.3) (5.1) (2.9) (2.9)
GG net debt/GDP 48.8 50.7 47.7 45.2 42.2 55.9 58.7 58.3 58.6
CPI inflation (0.7) (0.2) 1.6 1.2 2.1 3.4 1.6 2.1 2.2
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 59.0 59.2 57.4 57.6 56.0 57.1 58.0 57.6 57.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Qatar (AA-/Stable/A-1+)

  • Analyst: Shokhrukh Temurov, shokhrukh.temurov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Qatar, Nov. 6, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 1
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook indicates our view that, despite a sharp economic contraction and low hydrocarbon prices, we expect Qatar's credit profile will remain resilient, supported by its wealthy economy and strong government and external net asset positions. We also expect that the government will provide timely extraordinary liquidity support to the banking system in the less likely event of sudden and sharp reversals in foreign flows.

Downside scenario

A negative rating action could follow if Qatar's public finances or external stock position materially weaken compared with our base-case expectations. This could happen, for example, because of a prolonged decline in hydrocarbon revenue beyond our assumptions and without a sufficient fiscal policy response. Significant capital outflows and larger or persistent current account deficits could reduce the country's external buffers and weaken its ability to absorb additional shocks.

Upside scenario

We could consider raising the ratings if Qatar's political institutions were to develop in line with those of its peers outside the region, and we observed a marked increase in transparency, including greater clarity on the government's external assets.

(Originally published May 8, 2020)

Table 38

Qatar
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 66.8 58.4 61.0 68.6 63.7 56.6 58.7 61.5 64.5
GDP growth 4.8 3.1 (1.5) 1.2 0.8 (4.4) 2.1 1.8 1.3
GDP per capita growth (3.4) (3.9) (3.2) 0.0 (2.4) 0.6 0.1 (0.2) (0.2)
Current account balance/GDP 8.5 (5.5) 4.0 9.1 2.4 (4.4) (1.2) 1.2 3.2
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 106.0 144.5 156.8 175.2 194.3 234.7 225.3 220.0 215.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR (153.9) (151.6) (102.3) (99.3) (94.6) (108.4) (97.2) (97.2) (100.3)
GG balance/GDP (5.5) (2.9) (1.6) 7.9 7.4 6.3 5.3 6.2 7.0
GG net debt/GDP (113.1) (120.4) (97.3) (94.4) (101.9) (127.1) (125.3) (123.5) (122.9)
CPI inflation 1.8 2.7 0.4 0.3 (0.8) (2.3) 1.6 2.8 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 99.2 109.6 110.0 106.1 129.7 164.6 163.1 164.9 162.6
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Ras al Khaimah (A-/Stable/A-2)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah Downgraded To 'A-' On Increased Macroeconomic Risks; Outlook Stable, Oct. 23, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 3
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook on RAK reflects our expectation that the government will maintain its prudent fiscal stance over the next two years and that GDP growth will average a moderate 2.5% over 2021-2023.

We could lower the ratings over the next two years if the government's strong fiscal position were to deteriorate, for example if weaker-than-expected economic activity resulted in the rapid accumulation of government debt. We could also lower the ratings if debt-service costs significantly increased.

Although unlikely over the next two years, we could raise the ratings if economic growth trends materially strengthen.

(Originally published Oct. 23, 2020)

Table 39

Ras Al Khaimah
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 27.5 27.8 27.9 28.3 28.5 28.3 28.8 29.2 29.6
GDP growth 1.3 4.6 1.5 2.8 2.4 (5) 3.0 2.3 2.3
GDP per capita growth (1.7) 1.7 (1.4) 0.2 (0.5) 0.0 0.0 (0.2) (0.2)
Current account balance/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Narrow net external debt/CAR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
GG balance/GDP 1.4 1.7 0.9 1.8 1.7 0.5 0.4 0.6 0.7
GG net debt/GDP (9.8) (3.9) (5.0) (5.4) (7.4) (5.8) (6.0) (6.3) (6.8)
CPI inflation 3.0 (0.4) 2.4 4.2 (1.9) (0.5) 1.7 1.5 1.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast. N/A--Not available.

Romania (BBB-/Negative/A-3)

  • Analyst: Gabriel Forss, gabriel.forss@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Romania 'BBB-/A-3' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Remains Negative, Dec. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 3
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook is based on the risks to Romania's fiscal and external balances over the next 12 months. These are likely to materialize if policymakers fail to produce a credible plan to lower fiscal imbalances.

Downside scenario

We could lower our ratings on Romania if fiscal and external imbalances remain elevated for longer than we currently anticipate, for instance, because of challenges to fiscal policy design after the upcoming elections. In our view, Romania's funding cost could rise if the incoming government fails to present a credible fiscal policy framework.

Upside scenario

We could revise the outlook to stable if Romania's incoming government swiftly anchors fiscal consolidation, leading to a stabilization of Romania's public and external finances.

(Originally published Dec. 4, 2020)

Table 40

Romania
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 9.0 9.5 10.8 12.4 12.9 12.6 13.2 13.7 14.8
GDP growth 3.0 4.7 7.3 4.5 4.2 (5.2) 4.0 3.0 3.0
GDP per capita growth 3.4 5.3 8.0 5.1 4.8 (4.9) 4.3 3.3 3.3
Current account balance/GDP (0.6) (1.4) (2.8) (4.4) (4.7) (4.5) (5.1) (5.2) (5.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 102.1 103.6 100.3 102.3 102.8 100.9 102.9 104.8 107.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR 43.6 31.3 33.0 26.5 27.2 34.1 37.9 42.0 42.2
GG balance/GDP (0.6) (2.6) (2.6) (2.9) (4.4) (9.2) (7.2) (5.5) (4)
GG net debt/GDP 31.7 29.9 29.1 29.6 32.0 43.0 49.3 52.3 52.9
CPI inflation (0.4) (1.1) 1.1 4.1 3.9 2.3 2.8 3.0 3.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 31.0 29.2 27.5 26.7 25.6 26.7 26.1 25.6 25.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Russia (BBB-/Stable/A-3)

  • Analyst: Karen Vartapetov, karen.vartapetov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Russia 'BBB-/A-3' Foreign Currency And 'BBB/A-2' Local Currency Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, July 17, 2020
Rating score snapshot:
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 3
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that Russia's strong external and fiscal balance sheets would be able to absorb risks to fiscal or financial stability, stemming from lower oil prices and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Downside scenario

We could take a negative rating action due to a multi-year deterioration of the government's balance sheet. This could result from, for example, a more permanent loosening of Russia's fiscal framework or the crystallization of contingent liabilities in the state-owned corporate or financial sectors, both possibly exacerbated by lower-than-expected oil prices. Significant capital outflows, possibly in the context of geopolitical events resulting in materially tighter international sanctions, could also pressure the ratings.

Upside scenario

In the absence of additional major external shocks, we could take a positive rating action if Russia's GDP per capita trend growth reached rates comparable with that in countries with similar income levels, for instance as a consequence of government pro-growth policy measures. Faster accumulation of fiscal buffers, mitigating commodity-related revenue volatility, and effective measures to address long-term fiscal pressures from an aging population could also lead us to take a positive rating action.

(Originally published July 17, 2020)

Table 41

Russia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 9.4 8.7 10.7 11.4 11.6 9.9 10.5 11.3 12.0
GDP growth (2.0) 0.2 1.8 2.5 1.3 (3.5) 2.9 2.7 2.0
GDP per capita growth (2.2) 0.0 1.7 2.5 1.4 (3.5) 3.0 2.8 2.1
Current account balance/GDP 5.0 1.9 2.0 6.9 3.8 2.0 2.4 1.9 2.4
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 70.2 72.1 70.0 56.4 61.5 58.8 59.1 60.6 60.5
Narrow net external debt/CAR (48.3) (52.9) (52.1) (57.4) (68.9) (92.1) (85.1) (82.1) (82.6)
GG balance/GDP (3.4) (4.5) (1.5) 2.9 1.9 (4.7) (2.2) (1) (1)
GG net debt/GDP 4.2 8.5 9.7 5.3 2.7 9.9 11.1 11.0 11.1
CPI inflation 15.5 7.0 3.7 2.9 4.5 3.3 3.8 4.0 4.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 62.2 59.5 59.7 58.8 61.1 65.7 66.3 66.9 67.4
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Rwanda (B+/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Shokhrukh Temurov, shokhrukh.temurov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Rwanda Outlook Revised To Negative On Rising Pressure On Debt And External Positions; 'B+/B' Ratings Affirmed, Aug. 7, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects the possibility that Rwanda's external imbalances could increase more than we currently expect, due in particular to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on exports, tourism, and inward remittances. The outlook also reflects that larger general government deficits could make funding more complicated, despite the currently still favorable funding structure dominated by cheap concessional debt.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next 12 months if Rwanda's external position further weakened compared with our baseline forecasts. This could happen, for example, if trade or tourism flows, or inward remittances, remain below expectations. We currently expect Rwanda's external debt will exceed liquid external assets by close to 250% of current account receipts at year-end 2020, and by just below 200% in 2023.

The ratings might also come under pressure if Rwanda's public debt burden continued to worsen due to larger and more sustained fiscal imbalances than expected, with increased reliance on domestic financing crowding out banks' credit to the private sector.

Upside scenario

Conversely, we could revise our outlook to stable if our expectation of a significant and sustained improvement in Rwanda's fiscal and external performance after 2020 is met.

(Originally published Aug. 7, 2020)

Table 42

Rwanda
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.9
GDP growth 8.9 6.0 4.0 8.6 9.4 (0.5) 4.9 6.5 7.4
GDP per capita growth 6.0 4.1 1.3 5.9 8.4 (2.4) 2.8 4.4 5.3
Current account balance/GDP (14.8) (15.5) (7.6) (7.9) (8.8) (16.4) (10.7) (9.3) (8.5)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 121.7 127.3 104.9 102.1 103.7 124.1 112.6 108.8 113.8
Narrow net external debt/CAR 82.2 101.3 99.8 104.1 122.9 245.3 210.0 203.2 199.0
GG balance/GDP (4.0) (3.2) (4.6) (4.2) (5.5) (8.8) (9.0) (7.2) (6.8)
GG net debt/GDP 29.6 38.0 41.5 45.0 50.2 59.5 66.9 70.7 73.4
CPI inflation 2.5 5.7 4.8 1.4 2.4 6.7 2.5 4.5 4.2
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 19.3 19.4 19.3 20.4 20.7 21.0 20.9 21.0 20.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Saudi Arabia (A-/Stable/A-2)

  • Analyst: Ravi Bhatia, ravi.bhatia@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Saudi Arabia 'A-/A-2' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Sept. 25, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 1
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook indicates that we expect Saudi Arabia's relatively strong government and external balance sheets to continue to support the ratings.

We could lower our ratings if we observed fiscal weakening and a rapid erosion of the government's net asset position beyond our expectations, or a sharp deterioration in the sovereign's external position. A sustained rise in geopolitical or domestic political instability that posed a significant and continued threat to the oil sector could also weigh on the ratings.

We could raise the ratings if Saudi Arabia's economic growth prospects and fiscal consolidation improve significantly beyond our current expectations. This could occur as a result of sustainably stronger economic growth, perhaps due to increased diversification.

Table 43

Saudi Arabia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 20.8 20.3 21.5 23.5 23.2 18.7 20.6 21.8 22.2
GDP growth 4.1 1.7 (0.7) 2.4 0.3 (4.5) 2.2 2.7 2.2
GDP per capita growth 1.6 1.0 (1.8) (1.6) (2.0) (1.8) 1.7 1.7 1.2
Current account balance/GDP (8.7) (3.7) 1.5 9.2 4.8 (10.0) (0.6) 0.8 1.7
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 34.6 34.3 37.4 38.2 41.6 47.2 50.4 52.9 54.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR (309.5) (268.0) (204.0) (143.3) (143.7) (198.9) (127.2) (108.8) (96.0)
GG balance/GDP (7.6) (15.9) (6.6) (3.5) (3.1) (11) (6.2) (5.2) (4)
GG net debt/GDP (121.8) (105.9) (92.2) (74.8) (77.4) (88.7) (73.8) (63.6) (56.2)
CPI inflation 1.3 2.0 (0.9) 2.5 (1.2) 3.0 2.6 2.1 2.1
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 58.0 60.9 56.5 50.8 54.1 76.0 73.4 73.5 75.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Senegal (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Sebastien Boreux, sebastien.boreux@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Senegal, Dec. 7, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook on Senegal indicates that S&P Global Ratings expects the adverse economic and budgetary impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to be contained without the country's credit metrics suffering long-lasting structural damage, chiefly because of substantial external financial support. Once the impact of the pandemic abates, we expect strong economic growth to resume, alongside structural economic and budgetary reforms.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if, following the current downturn, the net government borrowing requirement declines significantly, the cost of servicing debt reduces, and economic growth resumes and is sufficient to put public debt relative to GDP on a downward path.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the government's budgetary performance deteriorates more than we expect, and real GDP growth rates are significantly weaker than our forecasts. This could occur if the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is more protracted than we currently anticipate.

Senegal's creditworthiness could also deteriorate if economic imbalances widen, or if pressures on the West African franc (XOF) to euro exchange rate appear. A devaluation--which we do not expect--would immediately increase government debt to GDP, placing considerable strain on Senegal's fiscal performance.

(Originally published June 5, 2020)

Table 44

Senegal
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8
GDP growth 6.4 6.4 7.4 6.4 5.3 0.5 5.2 7.5 9.0
GDP per capita growth 3.4 3.4 4.4 3.4 2.4 (2.3) 2.3 4.6 6.0
Current account balance/GDP (5.3) (4.2) (7.3) (9.5) (10.1) (10.7) (9.9) (8.6) (6.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 122.4 120.3 133.7 137.7 135.8 135.4 134.9 130.8 122.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR 113.4 106.6 123.4 122.0 130.2 148.5 143.5 134.3 118.6
GG balance/GDP (3.7) (3.3) (3.0) (3.7) (3.9) (6.3) (4.8) (3.3) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 38.9 43.0 44.0 51.4 52.9 58.9 60.6 59.2 56.8
CPI inflation 0.1 0.8 1.3 0.5 1.8 2.0 1.2 1.5 1.5
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 31.7 32.5 34.5 33.0 33.2 32.4 32.4 31.2 29.6
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Serbia (BB+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Aarti Sakhuja, aarti.sakhuja@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Serbia, Dec. 14, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic--in the form of a more-adverse external financing environment and deterioration in Serbia's growth and fiscal metrics--against the macroeconomic buffers authorities have built up over the past half-decade, including higher foreign exchange (FX) reserves and more fiscal space.

Downward pressure could build on the ratings over the next 12 months if, contrary to our current expectations:

  • We anticipated a far more significant weakening of government finances. This could occur, for instance, if the growth outlook remained subdued for longer; or
  • Serbia became increasingly reliant on debt-creating foreign inflows to finance its external deficit.
  • Upward ratings pressure could build if foreign direct investment inflows continue into Serbia, supporting an improvement in its balance of payments resilience via rising export receipts and higher FX reserves.

(Originally published May 1, 2020)

Table 45

Serbia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 5.6 5.8 6.3 7.3 7.4 7.6 8.3 8.6 9.0
GDP growth 1.8 3.3 2.1 4.5 4.3 (1.5) 4.5 3.0 2.8
GDP per capita growth 2.3 3.9 2.7 5.1 4.8 (1.0) 5.0 3.5 3.3
Current account balance/GDP (3.5) (2.9) (5.2) (4.8) (6.9) (5.5) (5.9) (5.2) (4.6)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 100.6 98.0 103.5 103.9 107.7 101.1 102.7 102.0 100.1
Narrow net external debt/CAR 70.6 63.4 59.9 46.7 44.4 54.1 51.9 49.6 46.4
GG balance/GDP (3.5) (1.2) 1.1 0.6 (0.2) (8.9) (3) (2) (1.5)
GG net debt/GDP 63.9 62.0 52.7 48.4 44.5 53.1 53.0 52.0 50.6
CPI inflation 1.4 1.1 3.1 2.0 1.9 1.5 2.0 3.0 3.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 45.1 44.1 42.8 44.0 44.9 49.7 48.6 48.4 48.4
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Sharjah (BBB-/Stable/A-3)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Sharjah Downgraded To 'BBB-' On Increased Risks To Its Fiscal Position; Outlook Stable, Oct. 23, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 3
  • External assessment: 2
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our expectation that Sharjah's economy will expand steadily, by about 2% over 2021-2023, while its fiscal debt and interest burden will continue to increase over the next two years.

Upside scenario

We could raise our ratings if net general government debt or debt-service costs reduced materially, reversing the current growth trend. However, we view this as unlikely over the next two years.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next two years if the government's fiscal position deteriorated further, for instance, from a materialization of contingent liabilities.

(Originally published Oct. 23, 2020)

Table 46

Sharjah
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 16.5 17.1 22.8 23.2 23.2 22.7 23.3 24.0 24.6
GDP growth 0.1 3.0 33.5 (1.7) 3.0 (6) 3.0 1.8 1.8
GDP per capita growth (0.9) 2.8 30.9 (2.7) 2.0 (1.1) 0.5 0.8 0.8
Current account balance/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Narrow net external debt/CAR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
GG balance/GDP (4.2) (3.2) (2.2) (3.2) (4.9) (3.0) (2.3) (1.8) (1.3)
GG net debt/GDP 9.7 13.5 12.1 15.9 22.6 28.9 33.2 36.5 39.1
CPI inflation 3.4 0.8 2.7 4.5 (3.0) (1) 2.0 2.0 2.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast. N/A--Not applicable.

St. Helena (BBB-/Stable/A-3)

  • Analyst: Tatonga G. Rusike, tatonga.rusike@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) St. Helena, Oct. 2, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 3
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 1
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances our expectation of strong and ongoing support from the U.K. government against constraints emerging from the pandemic.

Downside scenario

We would lower the ratings if financial support from the United Kingdom (unsolicited; AA/Stable/A-1+) diminishes and St. Helena's tax revenues are unable to compensate, or if the U.K.'s external position deteriorates more than we currently expect. We could also lower the ratings if pressure from the pandemic or a severe natural disaster were to have a long term and sustained impact on St. Helena's economy.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if St. Helena's economy accelerated faster than we currently forecast, and tax collection rose markedly.

(Originally published April 3, 2020)

Table 47

St. Helena
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 13.3 11.2 10.0 10.6 10.5 10.5 11.1 12.1 12.9
GDP growth 5.1 (7.1) (1.7) (1.2) 1.0 (2) 2.5 3.0 3.0
GDP per capita growth 6.5 (5.0) (5.6) (0.5) 0.2 (2.8) 1.7 2.2 2.2
Current account balance/GDP N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Narrow net external debt/CAR N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
GG balance/GDP 1.8 (0.5) (0.7) (1.1) (1.3) (1.9) 0.5 0.0 0.0
GG net debt/GDP (8.1) (7.5) (14.5) (12.7) (11.0) (9.0) (8.6) (8.1) (7.6)
CPI inflation 1.9 2.6 5.1 3.8 3.3 3.0 4.0 4.0 4.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 29.4 34.9 43.5 46.4 43.6 44.1 43.9 43.4 43.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast. N/A--Not applicable.

South Africa (BB-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Ravi Bhatia, ravi.bhatia@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: South Africa Long-Term Foreign And Local Currency Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Nov. 20, 2020

Rating score snapshot:

  • Institutional assessment: 4
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 2

Outlook: Stable

The outlook on both the foreign- and local-currency ratings is stable, since South Africa's credit strengths, particularly a credible central bank, a flexible exchange rate, actively traded currency, and deep capital markets, should help counterbalance low economic growth and fiscal pressures.

We could lower the ratings if South Africa's economic prospects fail to recover during the forecast period and fiscal financing or external pressures mount. This could, for example, arise from an unsustainable increase in the government's interest burden as a proportion of revenue. We could also consider a downgrade if the rule of law, property rights, or enforcement of contracts were to weaken significantly, undermining the investment and economic outlook.

We could raise the ratings if the government's reform efforts were to credibly place its debt-to-GDP ratio on a downward path. An upgrade could also occur if job creation and productivity gains substantially improve, leading to higher real per capita GDP growth.

(Originally published Nov. 20, 2020)

Table 48

South Africa
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 5.8 5.3 6.2 6.4 6.0 5.0 5.4 5.5 5.6
GDP growth 1.2 0.4 1.4 0.8 0.2 (7.3) 3.6 2.5 1.3
GDP per capita growth (0.4) (1.2) (0.2) (1.3) (1.6) (8.9) 1.9 0.8 (0.4)
Current account balance/GDP (4.6) (2.9) (2.5) (3.6) (3.0) (0.8) (1.4) (1.2) (1.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 110.9 105.4 104.3 108.9 108.9 101.2 102.0 101.1 101.2
Narrow net external debt/CAR 8.4 29.6 45.6 45.3 55.7 63.6 57.5 55.5 55.7
GG balance/GDP (3.7) (3.6) (4.1) (4.1) (6.5) (15.9) (11.5) (9.5) (8)
GG net debt/GDP 46.5 47.6 49.4 53.2 60.1 80.1 86.5 91.2 95.1
CPI inflation 4.6 6.3 5.3 4.7 4.1 3.3 4.0 4.4 4.4
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 80.0 77.7 77.1 78.3 79.6 78.4 74.3 72.9 72.5
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Tajikistan (B-/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Shokhrukh Temurov, shokhrukh.temurov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Tajikistan 'B-/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Aug. 21, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook reflects our view that the economic slowdown will be largely limited to 2020, and external and fiscal imbalances will be contained in the medium term. In the short term, we expect Tajikistan's increased external liquidity needs will be supported by disbursements from its multilateral development partners and international donors.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the strain on Tajikistan's government commercial debt-servicing capacity significantly increased, for example, due to a more severe and prolonged hit to external flows from the COVID-19 pandemic than expected, eroding relatively limited foreign exchange (FX) reserves.

Conversely, we could consider an upgrade if we see a significant and sustained improvement in Tajikistan's fiscal and external performance, with public debt and external positions substantially strengthened compared with our expectations.

Upside scenario

Materially higher GDP per capita and improved effectiveness of monetary policy could also lead us to take a positive rating action. This could happen, for example, as a result of a sustained economic expansion and a significant reduction of financial dollarization, alongside a material strengthening of the banking system.

(Originally published Aug. 21, 2020)

Table 49

Tajikistan
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.9 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.9
GDP growth 6.2 6.9 7.1 7.3 7.5 1.1 5.4 5.2 5.5
GDP per capita growth 3.9 4.6 4.9 5.2 5.0 (1.1) 3.1 2.9 3.2
Current account balance/GDP (6.1) (4.2) 2.2 (5.0) (2.3) (6.7) (4.9) (3.6) (3.8)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 132.8 127.5 102.6 103.5 102.2 109.9 107.9 104.9 104.0
Narrow net external debt/CAR 88.8 91.4 76.3 85.3 82.0 123.0 114.3 108.7 107.8
GG balance/GDP (1.9) (8.4) (5.1) (3.3) (1.7) (6.8) (4.4) (2.6) (2.6)
GG net debt/GDP 25.4 35.0 39.4 40.3 37.9 46.5 47.5 47.0 46.8
CPI inflation 5.1 6.1 6.7 5.4 8.0 13.4 9.0 7.8 7.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 23.6 18.4 14.2 12.8 12.7 12.5 11.9 11.3 10.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Togo (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Remy Carasse, remy.carasse@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: (Full Analysis) Togo, Oct. 23, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 3
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook on Togo reflects our view that the adverse economic and budgetary impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will be contained without a lasting and structural damage to the country's credit metrics. Once the impact of COVID-19 is contained, we expect the authorities to continue with further structural economic and budgetary reforms, leading to improved economic and budgetary performance.

Upside scenario

We could raise the ratings if Togo's economic growth is markedly stronger than we forecast, while external and fiscal deficits, and net government debt as a share of GDP, decrease materially.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if the government's budgetary performance deteriorates beyond our expectations and real GDP growth rates are significantly weaker than our forecasts. We could also lower our ratings if we saw pronounced pressure on WAEMU's international reserves and on the West African CFA franc (XOF) to euro exchange rate.

(Originally published April 24, 2020)

Table 50

Togo
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.9 0.9 1.0 1.0 1.0
GDP growth 5.7 5.6 4.4 5.0 5.5 0.2 4.0 5.0 5.0
GDP per capita growth 3.1 2.9 1.8 2.4 2.9 (2.2) 1.5 2.5 2.5
Current account balance/GDP (8.2) (7.2) (1.5) (2.6) (2.2) (4.1) (3.7) (3.0) (2.9)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 125.6 135.0 148.9 143.0 147.6 141.7 142.6 139.2 138.9
Narrow net external debt/CAR 84.8 129.5 113.9 126.0 123.2 145.8 139.9 138.2 137.1
GG balance/GDP (6.6) (7.1) (0.2) (0.6) 1.6 (5.5) (2.5) (1) (0.5)
GG net debt/GDP 45.7 49.7 46.1 46.2 37.8 42.9 43.3 41.7 39.8
CPI inflation 2.6 1.3 (1.0) 0.9 0.7 0.5 1.0 1.0 1.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 31.8 32.2 31.6 30.8 30.7 30.4 30.3 30.0 29.6
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Turkey (B+/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Maxim Rybnikov, maxim.rybnikov@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Turkey Foreign And Local Currency Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, July 24, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 4
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 4
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 4
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the lingering downside economic risks stemming from the pandemic over the next 12 months against the resilience of Turkey's private sector, and the still-contained stock of net general government debt. We expect that, despite currency volatility and COVID-19-related interruptions to economic activity, Turkish GDP will recover in the second half of this year.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if we saw a sustained re-emergence of macroeconomic imbalances, such as a persistently high pace of credit growth and the current account deficits widening by more than our forecasts. Such imbalances, in turn, would increase the likelihood of banking system distress, which implies contingent liability risks for public finances. We could also lower the ratings if Turkey's still comparatively strong public finances deteriorated for other reasons, such as the budgetary impact of COVID-19 being much larger than expected or currency volatility inflating general government debt levels beyond our projections.

Downside scenario

We could consider an upgrade if Turkey's growth proved to be higher and more sustainable than we forecast over the medium term while external imbalances declined and net general government debt remained contained. We could also raise the ratings if the government successfully devised and implemented a credible and transparent economic reform program focused on structural macroeconomic improvements, including strengthening the banking system as well as bolstering the foreign exchange (FX) reserves and monetary policy effectiveness of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT).

(Originally published July 24, 2020)

Table 51

Turkey
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 11.0 10.9 10.6 9.5 9.2 7.9 8.5 9.1 9.7
GDP growth 6.1 3.3 7.5 3.0 0.9 (1.5) 3.6 3.3 3.3
GDP per capita growth 4.7 1.9 6.2 1.5 (0.5) (2.8) 2.2 2.0 2.0
Current account balance/GDP (3.2) (3.1) (4.7) (2.7) 1.1 (4.5) (4.2) (3.8) (3.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 165.2 164.7 155.7 159.3 141.9 176.3 205.7 189.4 181.2
Narrow net external debt/CAR 118.2 123.7 127.8 113.6 95.1 134.5 124.9 125.2 127.9
GG balance/GDP (1.0) (1.7) (2.0) (2.8) (3.2) (5) (4) (3.5) (3)
GG net debt/GDP 23.4 24.3 23.8 27.0 28.8 36.7 35.5 35.6 35.4
CPI inflation 7.7 7.8 11.1 16.3 15.2 11.9 10.8 8.7 8.7
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 59.4 62.0 62.9 58.9 56.6 73.4 73.5 74.6 76.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Uganda (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Tatonga G. Rusike, tatonga.rusike@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Uganda 'B/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Dec. 11, 2020
Rating score snapshot:
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances our expectations of Uganda's high fiscal and external deficits over the next year, against our assumption it will maintain continuous access to official financing on preferential terms.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings on Uganda if access to concessional debt from official creditors narrows significantly. We could also consider a downgrade should Uganda's economic performance deteriorate further, or if external financing gaps became larger than we currently anticipate. Rating pressure could also emerge if foreign direct investment (FDI) does not pick up as we currently project.

Upside scenario

Although unlikely in the near to medium term, we could raise the ratings if Uganda's fiscal and external metrics markedly exceeded our expectations.

(Originally published Dec. 11, 2020)

Table 52

Uganda
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7
GDP growth 5.7 2.6 4.5 7.7 6.7 (0.5) 4.5 5.0 5.0
GDP per capita growth 2.2 (0.7) 1.2 4.3 3.3 (3.6) 1.2 1.7 1.7
Current account balance/GDP (6.7) (3.3) (5.5) (6.5) (6.6) (8.2) (8.0) (8.0) (8.1)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 102.0 97.8 102.1 100.6 107.3 115.3 110.8 113.3 115.4
Narrow net external debt/CAR 61.5 65.4 72.0 75.6 85.0 105.5 112.3 121.1 132.4
GG balance/GDP (4.2) (4.7) (3.6) (4.4) (5.3) (8.2) (10) (8) (6)
GG net debt/GDP 24.5 29.5 30.3 33.2 34.6 42.6 50.3 54.7 56.6
CPI inflation 5.4 5.5 5.6 2.6 2.9 4.0 5.0 5.0 5.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 14.5 14.5 13.7 13.6 14.0 15.1 15.1 15.1 15.1
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Ukraine (B/Stable/B)

  • Analyst: Aarti Sakhuja, aarti.sakhuja@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Ukraine 'B/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Stable, Sept. 11, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 5
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Stable

The stable outlook balances the risks to Ukraine's economy from the weak external environment and the potential for a reversal of past reforms, against the country's external buffers.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings if disruptions to funding from concessional programs or capital markets over the next year call into question the government's ability to meet debt service obligations. Such disruptions could happen if the government were to backtrack on key reforms, such as ensuring the independence of the NBU, which acts as both the monetary authority and financial system regulator.

Upside scenario

On the other hand, we could consider raising the ratings over the next year if we anticipated that public finances would consolidate faster than we currently forecast. This could result from a stronger economic recovery and discretionary policies. The rating could also benefit should Ukraine's external liquidity outperform our projections.

(Originally published Sept. 11, 2020)

Table 53

Ukraine
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 2.1 2.2 2.6 3.1 3.7 3.5 3.5 3.7 3.9
GDP growth (9.8) 2.4 2.5 3.4 3.2 (6) 4.0 3.0 3.0
GDP per capita growth (4.5) 2.9 2.9 3.9 3.8 (5.4) 4.5 3.5 3.5
Current account balance/GDP 5.6 (2) (3.1) (4.9) (2.7) 4.2 (2.1) (3.1) (3.7)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 161.3 146.9 137.0 132.9 123.4 111.9 115.7 115.6 114.7
Narrow net external debt/CAR 152.3 143.1 119.2 103.5 90.8 95.4 98.0 93.8 91.6
GG balance/GDP (3.2) (2.2) (1.4) (2.1) (2.1) (7.5) (5.3) (3) (2.5)
GG net debt/GDP 76.1 78.7 69.0 58.8 48.7 65.1 65.8 64.6 62.9
CPI inflation 48.7 13.9 14.4 11.0 7.9 3.0 6.0 5.0 5.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 52.1 42.8 34.6 30.6 24.7 25.5 24.3 24.1 24.0
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Uzbekistan (BB-/Negative/B)

  • Analyst: Max M. McGraw, maximillian.mcgraw@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Research Update: Uzbekistan 'BB-/B' Ratings Affirmed; Outlook Remains Negative, Dec. 4, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 5
  • Economic assessment: 5
  • External assessment: 3
  • Fiscal assessment – Flexibility and performance: 5
  • Fiscal assessment – Debt burden: 2
  • Monetary assessment: 4
Outlook: Negative

The negative outlook reflects our view that Uzbekistan's external and fiscal debt could continue to increase rapidly.

Downside scenario

We could lower the ratings over the next 12 months if we thought that the rapid accumulation of government external debt in recent years would not moderate in line with our projections, for instance because ongoing investment needs lead to higher-than-expected fiscal or external deficits.

We could also lower the ratings if dollarization levels in the economy significantly increase, despite recent reforms, or if we observe increasing weakness in key state-owned enterprises (SOEs), leading to the realization of contingent liabilities on the government's balance sheet.

We could affirm the ratings if the pace of external or fiscal debt accumulation slows over the medium term, in line with our base case, as economic growth and current account receipts increase to mitigate additional external borrowing.

Upside scenario

Uzbekistan's increased integration with the global economy and government SOE reforms could support the ratings if they result in increased economic growth potential and SOE financial resiliency. Further diversification of the government's revenue base or the composition of exports would also support the ratings.

(Originally published Dec. 4, 2020)

Table 54

Uzbekistan
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 2.6 2.6 1.8 1.5 1.7 1.7 1.8 1.9 2.1
GDP growth 7.5 6.1 4.5 5.5 5.6 0.5 5.0 5.5 5.5
GDP per capita growth 5.6 4.3 2.8 3.6 3.5 (1.3) 3.2 3.6 3.6
Current account balance/GDP 1.3 0.4 2.5 (7.1) (5.8) (5.4) (7.1) (5.7) (5.4)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 74.7 79.3 75.1 83.8 84.1 80.8 84.1 85.0 86.8
Narrow net external debt/CAR (82.5) (92.1) (78.4) (51.7) (21.5) (3.1) 18.6 30.0 35.9
GG balance/GDP 0.3 (0.5) (1.9) (2.1) (3.9) (7.5) (5.7) (3.2) (3.2)
GG net debt/GDP (11.7) (13.4) (18.4) (9.0) 2.4 8.4 14.2 16.7 18.9
CPI inflation 5.5 5.5 13.8 17.5 14.5 12.0 10.0 10.0 8.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 19.2 21.9 36.8 41.4 42.2 46.5 48.7 50.3 50.7
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.

Zambia (SD/SD)

  • Analyst: Tatonga G. Rusike, tatonga.rusike@spglobal.com
  • Latest publication: Zambia Foreign Currency Ratings Lowered To SD/SD On Suspension Of Debt Service Payments To External Commercial Creditors, Oct. 21, 2020
Rating score snapshot
  • Institutional assessment: 6
  • Economic assessment: 6
  • External assessment: 6
  • Fiscal assessment - Flexibility and performance: 6
  • Fiscal assessment - Debt burden: 6
  • Monetary assessment: 5
Outlook: --

Ratings at 'SD' do not carry outlooks. These ratings express a condition, default, and not a forward-looking opinion of default probability.

The negative outlook on the long-term local currency sovereign rating indicates that Zambia has built up a high level of supplier arrears, which signals the possibility of nonpayment on domestic commercial financial obligations over the next six to 12 months.

We would lower the local currency ratings within the next 12 months should government fail to pay its local currency commercial financial obligations.

We could raise our ratings out of 'SD' should Zambia and its external commercial creditors agree to a debt restructuring deal, or if Zambia cleared its arrears on the unpaid obligations and began making debt service payments again.

We could raise the local currency ratings if Zambia improved its fiscal liquidity position or reduced the size of its fiscal deficits and debt burden over the next 12 months. For instance, reducing its domestic supplier arrears could indicate that its fiscal liquidity position had improved.

(Originally published Oct. 21, 2020)

Table 55

Zambia
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020e 2021f 2022f 2023f
GDP per capita (in ‘000) 1.3 1.2 1.5 1.6 1.3 1.1 1.0 1.0 1.0
GDP growth 2.9 3.8 3.5 4.0 1.7 (4) 2.0 3.0 3.0
GDP per capita growth (0.2) 0.7 0.5 1.1 (1.2) (6.7) (0.9) 0.1 0.1
Current account balance/GDP (2.8) (3.4) (1.7) (1.3) 0.6 (0.9) (1.3) (1.3) (1.3)
Gross external financing needs/CAR&FXR 103.4 120.3 117.0 116.2 117.2 132.3 137.5 137.7 136.3
Narrow net external debt/CAR 93.7 113.6 112.0 105.2 146.3 193.7 204.3 203.9 205.9
GG balance/GDP (9.9) (6.0) (7.6) (7.2) (8.6) (11) (9) (7) (5.5)
GG net debt/GDP 54.3 57.1 58.0 67.2 85.1 105.4 106.5 106.8 106.4
CPI inflation 10.1 17.9 6.6 7.5 9.2 15.0 12.0 8.0 8.0
Bank credit to resident private sector/GDP 16.7 12.8 11.4 11.7 13.0 12.2 11.9 11.8 11.8
A free and  interactive version of a larger number of sovereign risk indicators can be found at spratings.com/sri. e--Estimate. f--Forecast.
Primary Credit Analyst:Frank Gill, Madrid + 34 91 788 7213;
frank.gill@spglobal.com
Secondary Contact:Samuel Tilleray, London + 442071768255;
samuel.tilleray@spglobal.com

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