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PLEASE READ AND SCROLL DOWN!

 

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Announcement:

Moody's: Fiji shows continuing improvements in economic and institutional strength

21 Jun 2017

Singapore, June 21, 2017 -- Moody's Investors Service says that Fiji's B1 rating and positive outlook reflect continuing improvements in the country's economic and institutional strength, as well as lower political risk. Moderately high government debt and wider fiscal deficits in recent years are balancing these strengths, along with heightened susceptibility to natural disasters.

Moody's further notes that Tropical Cyclone Winston, which struck Fiji in 2016, has not derailed the country's economic momentum as real GDP grew for the seventh consecutive year in 2016 or an average of 3.3% over the period, faster than in the decade up to 2009.

Moody's conclusions are contained in its just-released annual credit analysis of the sovereign, "Government of Fiji -- B1 Positive". The report is a regular update and does not constitute a rating action.

Moody's determination of Fiji's government issuer rating is based on consideration of four rating factors: Economic Strength, Low (+); Institutional Strength, Low (+); Fiscal Strength, Moderate (-); and Susceptibility to Event Risk, Moderate (-).

Fiji's robust growth coincides with relatively stable inflation and broad external balance, while greater political stability since the elections in 2014 has boosted policy reform and business sentiment, improving funding conditions for the government. We expect the lower political risk to continue to bolster Fiji's wider sovereign credit profile.

Tourism continues to be the main driver of economic growth. At the same time, improved labour market conditions, stable household earnings and inward remittances have bolstered wholesale and retail sales. Furthermore, rebuilding from the effects of the cyclone is boosting construction activity.

Credit challenges include the government's high debt burden compared with similarly rated sovereigns. However, reliable domestic financing from the Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) mitigates this source of credit risk. In addition, reconstruction after the cyclone and development spending are driving wider fiscal deficits.

Fiji's sovereign credit profile will remain exposed to environmental risks. The country's small size, lack of economic diversification and relatively low level of development increase the potential impact of climate change-related natural disasters.

As indicated, domestic political risk has improved significantly since elections in 2014. The government has leveraged its solid electoral mandate to pursue reform, while robust economic growth has further bolstered its legitimacy. However, there remains a risk that a re-emergence of political instability could hinder the effectiveness of fiscal and economic policies aimed at boosting growth and strengthening public finances.

Subscribers can read the full report at

https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_1069673

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS ONLY: For more information, please call one of our global press information hotlines: New York +1-212-553-0376, London +44-20-7772-5456, Tokyo +813-5408-4110, Hong Kong +852-3758-1350, Sydney +61-2-9270-8141, Mexico City 001-888-779-5833, São Paulo 0800-891-2518, or Buenos Aires 0800-666-3506. You can also email us at mediarelations@moodys.com or visit our web site at www.moodys.com.

This publication does not announce a credit rating action. For any credit ratings referenced in this publication, please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for the most updated credit rating action information and rating history.

Matthew Circosta
Analyst
Sovereign Risk Group
Moody's Investors Service Singapore Pte. Ltd.
50 Raffles Place #23-06
Singapore Land Tower
Singapore 48623
Singapore
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

Atsi Sheth
MD - Sovereign Risk
Sovereign Risk Group
JOURNALISTS: 1 212 553 0376
Client Service: 1 212 553 1653

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Singapore Pte. Ltd.
50 Raffles Place #23-06
Singapore Land Tower
Singapore 48623
Singapore
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

No Related Data.
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