B- from Fitch for $US2 Bond

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International credit ratings agency Fitch, has given Jamaica’s recent USD$2-billion double-bond a B-minus.

Last week, the Jamaican government announced the successful offer of two bonds on the international markets.

The first, a 12-year bond, is worth USD$1.35-billion, while the second, a 30-year bond is worth USD$650-million.

The government will use the bulk of the funds to buy back its Petrocaribe debt at a steep discount.

Fitch says its B-minus rating is driven by the government’s very high debt burden, low growth and fragile but improving external finances.

The outlook on the rating is positive, as the government continues to adhere to fiscal targets agreed with the IMF.

Fitch says there are signs of improved business confidence and growth prospects in Jamaica.

However, the rating would be sensitive to any changes in Jamaica’s long-term foreign currency rating.

Fitch upgraded that rating to B-minus last February, and revised the outlook to positive from stable in February this year.