Fitch Ratings affirms Kazakhstan's pre-pandemic credit rating

The international rating agency Fitch Ratings has affirmed Kazakhstan's pre-pandemic sovereign credit rating at 'BBB' with a Stable outlook.

Fitch analysts note that Kazakhstan's stable rating reflects the country's strong fiscal position, strong foreign trade balance and low government debt.

These factors allowed the country's economy to remain resilient to shocks associated with the pandemic and volatility in the energy market.

The stimulating effect of the current macroeconomic policy of the government is especially noted due to the increase in expenditures to support business activity in the real sector of the economy and SMEs.

In addition, the presence of significant international reserves of the country (47% of GDP in the first half of the year), which were supported by a significant return on investment in international financial assets and an increase in gold prices, is cited as one of the key factors in the stability of credit assessments.

The agency also points to a number of other factors that positively influenced the stable rating of Kazakhstan, including a flexible exchange rate, high capitalization and a low share of non-performing loans from STBs.

Fitch forecasts Kazakhstan's real GDP growth this year at 3.5%, accelerating to 4% in 2022.

Earlier, on Aug. 11, 2021, the Moody's credit agency upgraded Kazakhstan's rating to Baa2 with a Stable outlook.

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