The Saudi Ministry of Finance welcomed the reports issued by international credit rating agencies, including Moody’s, which confirmed the Saudi credit rating at its previous levels, reflecting the strength of the Saudi economy, its stability, and its ability to face global economic challenges, and its launch towards achieving the goals of Vision 2030 and achieving economic and social development.
The Ministry expressed its reservations about the report issued by Fitch Ratings, which gave Saudi Arabia a grade (A), in contrast to its previous rating (A+) maintained by the Kingdom in the previous ratings.
The ministry stressed that the Kingdom and the major Saudi companies’ preservation of advanced levels in the international ratings, proves the effectiveness of the measures taken by the Kingdom in the context of promoting economic growth, in addition to the efforts made by Saudi Aramco in dealing with Abqaiq-Khurais terrorist attack.
This demonstrated Aramco’s professionalism and efficiency in the non-stop supply of global markets after the recent emergency events, confirming the operational excellence and project management skills of this leading global company.
Saudi Arabia was able to restore production capacity and reached 11.3 million bpd in September, to reach 12 million bpd by the end of November, while the actual supply during October will reach 9.89 million bpd, and will maintain Saudi Arabia, the largest oil exporter in the world, to fulfill its full commitments to its customers this month.
Fitch’s report does not reflect the implications of the Saudi rapid response to such serious events, the ministry said, stressing that Saudi Aramco’s responsiveness and flexibility have enhanced the company’s reliability in oil supply operations to global markets, urging Fitch to reconsider its rating, which seems to be taken in a hurry especially that it should take into account the continuity and stability of the oil supply, which reflects the confidence of the international community in Saudi Arabia’s ability to fulfill its obligations towards international markets.
In this regard, the Ministry stressed that the budget deficit falls within the plans announced in the state budget for 2019, and that the Saudi government is committed to increasing the focus of investment in key areas of the Vision 2030 and continues to work to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of spending, as it has one of the strongest reserves in the world, considering that the financial assets exceed their obligations.
Fitch downgrades the Saudi Ratings
Fitch has downgraded Saudi Arabia’s credit rating from A+ to A with a stable outlook, explaining that the decision comes amid recent attacks on Aramco facilities.
Fitch stressed that Aramco’s handling of the aftermath of the incident demonstrates the firm’s strength and ability to respond quickly and effectively to emergencies.
Saudi Arabia’s net foreign reserves and assets remain among the top countries that Fitch covers, the Agency confirmed.
It’s noteworthy that Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s secured the Saudi credit rating following Abqaiq-Khurais attack.