SA foreign & local currency ratings affirmed at ‘BB’ and ‘BB+’, outlook stable

Last night S&P Global Ratings affirmed its ‘BB/B’ long- and short-term foreign currency sovereign credit ratings and its ‘BB+/B’ long- and short-term local currency sovereign credit ratings on South Africa. The outlook is stable.
The Transfer and Convertibility (T&C) assessment is ‘BBB-‘. S&P also affirmed the ‘zaAA+/zaA-1+’ long- and short-term South Africa national scale ratings.



“The stable outlook reflects our view that economic growth will pick up modestly over
the next year, while government debt will remain above 50% of GDP. The outlook also
reflects our view that the government will pursue economic and social reforms.”

S&P added that it could lower the ratings “if we were to observe fiscal deterioration, for example, due to higher expenditure pressures or weaker economic performance. We could also consider lowering the ratings if the rule of law, property rights, or enforcement of contracts were to weaken, undermining the investment and economic outlook.”

S&P said it could raise the ratings if economic growth or fiscal outcomes strengthen in a significant and sustained manner compared with its current projections.

“Ratings upside could also arise if the risks of a deterioration in external funding sources were to subside, and external imbalances declined. We could also take a positive rating action if policymakers were to introduce structural economic reforms that delivered improved competitiveness and employment.”

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