Lebanon's Finance Minister: 'Steps Needed After Long-term Investment Rating Downgraded '

Tuesday, 22 January, 2019 - 13:15
Asharq Al-Awsat

Lebanon's Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil said a report by Moody's Investors Service that downgraded the country's long-term investment ratings reflects the need for quickly forming a new government and implementing reforms, the Associated Press (AP) reported.

Khalil's statement came in a tweet Tuesday after Moody's downgraded the Lebanon's issuer ratings to Caa1 from B3.

The outlook was changed to stable from negative.

Moody's said its decision reflects the heightened risk that the government's response to increased liquidity and financial stability risks will include "a debt rescheduling or other liability management exercise that may constitute a default under Moody's definition," according to AP.

Lebanon's economy has been under pressure with a debt of $85 billion equal to 150 percent of its GDP and little growth.

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