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Rating Action:

Moody's downgrades certain Portuguese government related issuers

13 Jul 2010

London, 13 July 2010 -- Moody's has today downgraded (1) the ratings of Rede Ferroviaria Nacional REFER, EPE and Parpublica-Participacoes Publicas (SGPS), SA to A1with a stable outlook from Aa2 on review for downgrade, (2) the rating of Radio e Televisao de Portugal S.A. to A2 from Aa3, and maintained the rating on review for further downgrade, and (3) the rating of Redes Energeticas Nacionais, SGPS, S.A. to A3 with a stable outlook from A2 on review for downgrade. At the same time Moody's has affirmed the A3/P-2 ratings of Energias de Portugal, S.A. with a stable outlook.

All of the above companies are government related issuers which have an element of potential government support incorporated within their ratings in accordance with Moody's rating methodology for government related issuers.

The above actions follow Moody's earlier rating action to downgrade to A1 from Aa2 the ratings of the Government of the Republic of Portugal ("RoP"). The rating downgrade reflects Moody's view that (1) the Portuguese government's financial strength will continue to weaken over the medium term, as evidenced by ongoing deterioration in the country's debt metrics, such as debt to GDP and debt to revenues; and (2) the Portuguese economy's growth prospects are likely to remain relatively weak unless recent structural reforms bear fruit over the medium to longer term. The rating outlook is now stable, with the upside and downside risks evenly balanced.

Moody's notes that Parpublica-Participacoes Publicas (SGPS), SA ("Parpublica") does not enjoy any explicit guarantees from the Portuguese government and that the rating is the same as the sovereign rating of the Republic of Portugal. A downgrade to A1 of the sovereign ratings of Portugal translates into a downgrade to A1 of Parpublica's ratings. Parpublica's ratings factor that the company will remain a key instrument for the Portuguese government's public corporate management policy and therefore instrumental to the Ministry of Finance. The levels of support and dependence within the Government Related Issuer Methodology have not been changed and remain high. The baseline credit assessment has been changed to 5 from 3 and this translates into an A1 rating with a stable outlook (same as RoP).

The rating of Radio e Televisao de Portugal S.A. ("RTP") has been downgraded by two notches, in line with the rating downgrade of the sovereign. RTP's A2 rating remains one notch below the sovereign rating of RoP, primarily reflecting the absence of an explicit guarantee from the government. RTP's rating remains on review for possible downgrade, as Moody's will continue to reassess the various factors of RTP's rating such as its baseline credit assessment, support and dependence assumptions.

The ratings of Rede Ferroviaria Nacional REFER, EPE ("REFER") are at the same level as RoP as they incorporate a very high support assumption. Consequently, a downgrade in the rating of RoP to A1 from Aa2 has resulted in a downgrade in REFER's rating to A1. The rating outlook is stable mirroring the stable outlook on the RoP rating. In addition, Moody's has confirmed REFER's standalone credit quality as expressed by REFER's 15 (B2 equivalent) baseline credit assessment. This confirmation reflects REFER's continuing ability to access debt markets and an expectation that this will continue over the coming months despite the possibility of volatile debt market conditions from time to time.

Redes Energeticas Nacionais, SGPS, S.A. ("REN")'s senior unsecured ratings have been downgraded to A3 stable outlook from A2 under review for possible downgrade. The ratings assume moderate support from RoP, its majority owner, however the two notch downgrade of the sovereign has led to a one notch downgrade in the final rating, reducing the notching uplift from two to one, from the baseline credit assessment (BCA) of 8 (Baa1 equivalent) which remains unchanged.

Energias de Portugal, S.A. ("EDP")'s A3/P-2 ratings, which incorporate a one notch uplift from its BCA of 8 have been affirmed, reflecting EDP's position as the leading electricity company in Portugal, and our view that it will remain strategically important to Portugal. Moody's has, however, previously pointed out that a further reduction in State ownership from the current direct and indirect 25.71% holding could lead to a re-evaluation of EDP's position as a government related issuer or as a financial, rather than a strategic, stake and hence a review of the current one notch rating uplift, although this does not appear under consideration in the near term.

For additional information on rating factors, please refer to the individual issuer credit opinions, available on www.moodys.com.

Moody's last rating action pertaining to Parpublica, RTP, REN and REFER was on 5 May 2010 when their ratings were placed on review for downgrade following the earlier placing of the Aa2 RoP rating on review for downgrade.

Moody's last rating action on EDP was on 5 May 2010 when its ratings were affirmed at A3/P2/stable when the Aa2 rating of RoP was put under review for possible downgrade.

The principal methodology applied to the issuers used in this rating action is The Application of Joint Default Analysis to Government Related Issuers, April 2005, which can be found at www.moodys.com in the Ratings Methodologies sub-directory under the Research & Ratings tab. Other methodologies and factors that may have been considered in the process of rating these issuers can also be found in the Rating Methodologies sub-directory on Moody's website.

London
Monica Merli
MD - Infrastructure Finance
Infrastructure Finance
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

London
Paloma San Valentin
MD - Corporate Finance
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Moody's downgrades certain Portuguese government related issuers
No Related Data.
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