12 Aug 2019 10:53

Oreshkin welcomes Fitch rating upgrade

TURKMENBASHI. August 12 (Interfax) - Russian Economic Development Minister Maxim Oreshkin welcomed the decision by Fitch to improve Russia's sovereign credit rating.

"Positive," he told investors on the sidelines of the Caspian Economic Forum, when asked how he felt about the decision.

Oreshkin had earlier said ratings from international rating agencies were no longer that important from the point of view of raising finance. "From the point of view of financing this is no longer so important for Russia. It used to be important, especially in the 2015-2016 period, but I reiterate, investor confidence in Russian credit risk, in Russian debt is no longer firmly under the influence of the rating agencies. They [the agencies] are gaining on but not determining [what investors do] so if there's an upgrade, then great, and if not, then no worries," he said last week ahead of the Fitch decision.

Fitch on August 9 raised Russia's long-term local and foreign currency issuer default rating to "BBB" from "BBB-", changing the rating outlook to stable.

Russia expects the rating agencies Standard & Poor's and Moody's to upgrade its sovereign credit rating after Fitch Ratings did.

"We expect that Fitch's decision will become a logical basis for the upgrade of Russia's sovereign credit rating by the remaining agencies of 'the Big Three,'" Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on August 10.

Fitch has upgraded the Russia's ratings to "BBB" from "BBB-." The outlook is stable.