The Malta Independent 30 August 2016, Tuesday

Finance Ministry welcomes Standard and Poor’s positive outlook for Malta

Saturday, 9 January 2016, 17:45 Last update: about 9 months ago

The Ministry for Finance today welcomed the latest rating by the international credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s. In its assessmentStandard and Poor’s reaffirmed Malta’s rating at BBB+ / A-2 with a positive outlook. This is based on Malta’s favourable economic growth prospects and the gradual budgetary consolidation which should place the debt-to-GDP ratio on a downward path. Both these targets remain at the top of Government’s agenda.

The Ministry is also satisfied by Malta’s wage and employment growth prospects and the increase in the labour market participation of females and older persons noted by Standard and Poor’s.

The Government’s proactive strategy of exploring new growth sectors to sustain growth is noted by Standard and Poor’s where it remarks that, “further diversification of the economy – particularly into information and communication technology, education, and medical tourism – could support further investment activity.”

The Ministry welcomed Standard and Poor’s remarks on the external sector of the economy, particularly the service sector, where it expects Malta to, “run a current account surplus on the back of improving trade and services balances.” and sees this as a, “structural shift from the pre-2012 situation of small but consistent deficits.” It expects, “the strength of the service sector as a key driver of this change.”

Finance Minister Prof. Edward Scicluna commented: Standard & Poor’s rating reflects the solid performance of our economy and prospects for the upcoming years. It is evident that Government’s efforts are bearing the desired results and we expect this to continue in the coming years.

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