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11 Nov 2010
Singapore, November 11, 2010 -- Moody's Investors Service and its China affiliate, China Chengxin
International Rating Co Ltd ("CCXI"), hosted today in Beijing their
annual conference to present their views on China's sovereign and
"Together with CCXI, Moody's has a long-term commitment to
supporting the development of China's increasingly important debt markets,
especially in the context of the remarkable growth in the country's
economy," says Min Ye, CCXI Chief Executive Officer and Managing
Director China Financial Market, Moody's, and moderator of
"And this conference was particularly timely in that we have just
upgraded China's sovereign ratings to Aa3 from A1, maintaining
our positive outlook," adds Tom Byrne, a Moody's
Senior Vice President.
Moody's raised the government's foreign and local currency bond
ratings to Aa3 from A1, China's country ceilings for foreign and
local currency bank deposits to Aa3 from A1, and the ceilings for
foreign and local currency bonds to Aa3 from A1. The short-term
foreign currency rating remains at P-1 and is therefore unaffected.
"The reasons for the upgrade are multifold," says Byrne.
"Among them are the resilient performance of the economy following
the onset of the financial crisis, as well as the expectations of
continued strong growth and macroeconomic stability over the medium term;
and the exceptional strength of external payments, which provide
a substantial buffer against global financial market turbulence."
In Moody's view, the re-balancing of the Chinese economy
(emphasizing domestic consumption) and a somewhat tempered rate of economic
growth, if sustained, will also help ensure long-run
The budget deficit resulting from the economic stimulus program will likely
be contained to within 3% of GDP this year and next. Robust
revenue growth will likely eclipse that of nominal GDP, raising
further the ratio of revenues to GDP.
"In addition, we think that direct government debt will likely
be around 20% -- if not less -- of GDP this year and
next," adds Byrne.
Moreover, with net international financial assets amounting to more
than 50% of GDP -- bolstered by about $2.7 trillion
in official foreign exchange holdings -- only a handful of highly
rated advanced industrial economies (such as Norway, Switzerland,
Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore) have a stronger international investment
position than China.
Also speaking at the conference was Ivan Chung, a Moody's
Vice President-Senior Analyst, who discussed the growth in
RMB bonds in Hong Kong over the past year.
"The offshore RMB market is growing significantly -- RMB deposits
in Hong Kong more than doubled this year to reach RMB 130 billion in August
2010. Offshore RMB bond issuance up through end-September
2010 amounted to RMB 17.2 billion, compared to RMB 16 billion
for all of 2009," according to Chung.
More importantly, the issuer base has broadened significantly,
with first-time issues by non-bank SOEs, foreign enterprises
and banks, and supra-nationals.
"But even with this growth, there are still barriers that
need to be overcome -- barriers having to do with the ease and predictability
of conversion, settlements, fund flows in and out of China,
and tax treatments," says Chung, adding that,
"The key to growth potential and sustained development of offshore
RMBS bonds will depend on policy."
Thomas J. Byrne
Senior Vice President - Regional Credit Officer
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Singapore Pte. Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: (852) 3758 -1350
SUBSCRIBERS: (65) 6398-8308
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: (852) 3758 -1350
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077
Michael Min Ye
Moody's Investors Service (Beijing) Ltd.
Telephone:+86-10 6642 8968
Moody's Investors Service Singapore Pte. Ltd.
Moody's & CCXI hold China sovereign & financial outlook conference
50 Raffles Place #23-06
Singapore Land Tower
No Related Data.
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