Fitch BB- rating ‘mark of confidence in our economy’, says Finance Minister
Seychelles Fitch Ratings of BB-, the same as last year, is a mark of confidence in our economy, the Minister for Finance, Trade and the Blue Economy Jean-Paul Adam has said.
Minister Adam said this yesterday morning when commenting on the rating Seychelles has maintained from last year.
Talking to the press at his Liberty House office in the presence of Central bank governor Caroline Abel and principal secretary for finance and trade Patrick Payet, Minister Adam said;
“We are in an environment where there are lots of uncertainty and turbulence in the global economy where quite a number of countries including both highly developed and developing ones have been downgraded. The fact that Seychelles has been able to maintain its rating of last year is a mark of stability and increased resilience we have been able to achieve and confirmation that our reforms are going in the right direction and we are on the right track towards being able to also proceed with more deeper structural reforms that bring benefits to the population,” Minister Adam said.
He noted that the fact that we have reaffirmed our current rating is also a very positive mark for Seychelles at this stage.
These are for instance the progressive tax reforms and doing it in such a manner that it maintains economic stability.
“This rating also recognises the concerted effort that we have made to continue reducing our debt to GDP ratio and that we are on track in terms of reducing that debt,” Minister Adam said.
Commenting on the rating for her part, Ms Abel said the institution remains committed to ensuring it continues to adjust monetary policies so as to maintain stability in prices and a flexible exchange rate regime.
Ms Abel noted that another important factor which has contributed in Seychelles maintaining the BB rating is our commitment to maintain the country’s reserves to a stable level.
“This helps us to withstand any external shocks which may threaten our economy,” Ms Abel said.
She added that the country’s present reserves are around US $535 million and this has been affirmed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Ms Abel said this is equivalent to approximately four and a half months of importation.
Ms Abel went on to point out that Fitch Ratings has advised the CBS to continue maintaining stability of the country’s reserves as failure to do so could reduce our level of resilience to external shocks and economic turbulences thus making us vulnerable and putting us in a difficult position.
The CBS also has to ensure inflation is maintained at a stable level and Ms Abel pointed out that it is the role of the recently set up Financial Stability Committee to ensure any policy that is introduced does not affect the country’s financial stability when they are implemented.
Source: NATION 8-13-16