Moodys says Albania needs institutional reforms for credit ratings upgrade.

By bne IntelliNews March 13, 2012
An upgrade of Albanias credit ratings would require a successful implementation of institutional reforms in the country, rating agency Moodys said in summary credit opinion on the Balkan country. Improvement in institution building including judicial efficiency and success in the tackling of corruption would be credit beneficial, as such shortcomings hamper investment, the statement said. The government needs to achieve more substantial progress in addressing the economy's structural problems. On the other hand, a failure to implement planned economic and institutional reforms could put a downward pressure on the rating. Moreover, Albania needs to achieve a fiscal consolidation, including limiting its budget deficit below 3% of GDP in mid-term and reducing the government debt to GDP ratio. The countrys outlook remains stable. Moodys assigned its first-ever sovereign ratings to Albania in June 2007. Albania's government bond rating is B1, reflecting the country's low economic, institutional and government financial strength and medium susceptibility to event risk. The latter are largely driven by economic as well as political factors. Moodys has not taken any other rating actions since the initial assignment. Albania is also rated by rating agency Standard & Poors (S&P), which has confirmed Albanias B+ long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings last December.

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