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China's sovereign credit profile is likely to withstand rebalancing challenges: Moody's

Singapore, June 17, 2014 -- Moody's Investors Service says that China's Aa3 rating and stable outlook are underpinned by the country's macroeconomic strengths as well as by its fiscal and external cushions, and that the rating agency expects the sovereign's credit profile to withstand the rebalancing challenges.

Nonetheless, the success of policy measures will be critical for China's
ability to negotiate successfully the challenges which lie ahead. To that
end, the government's unfolding policy approach that favors long-term
stability over short-term growth provides support to China's sovereign
credit profile.


China's real GDP growth -- according to Moody's central scenario -- will
edge down into the 6.5%-7.5% range this year and the next, while the
longer-term growth outlook hinges on the success of credit tightening
policies and the pace of structural reforms.

Moody's views were presented at the annual Moody's & CCXI China Credit
Risk Conference, with the theme: "Can China Weather the Risks of
Rebalancing?" The conference takes place in Beijing today, and in
Shanghai on Thursday 19 June.

Growth dividends from the structural reforms of the mid-1990s and China's
accession to the World Trade Organization in 2001 have dissipated in the
wake of the 2008-09 global financial crisis. Since then,
investment-intensive economic growth has become increasingly dependent on

Comprehensive policy reforms announced by the Third Plenum of the 18th
Central Committee in November 2013 indicate that while China's growth
imperative remains strong, the Communist Party's new leadership
recognizes that the economic model established two decades ago is
producing diminishing returns and has raised social tensions, and that
reforms will ensure continued macroeconomic and social stability.

Moody's assesses China's credit profile in terms of economic strength,
institutional strength, fiscal strength and susceptibility to event risk.
These are the four main analytic factors in Moody's Sovereign Bond Rating
Methodology. Moody's evaluates the four Methodology factors on a scale
which ranges from "very high" to "very low."

Specifically, Moody's assigns a score of "very high" for economic
strength, as it believes that China's growth trajectory will slow but
remain relatively strong, and that a collapse in output is unlikely.

Moody's further assigns a score of "moderate" for institutional strength,
"very high" for fiscal strength, and "moderate" for susceptibility to
event risk.

While the rating outlook is stable, Moody's notes that over time, upward
rating pressure could arise if China receives a growth dividend from the
advancement of the reforms outlined by the Third Plenum.

On the other hand, negative rating pressure could arise, with the
greatest threats arising from the tail risks of a sharp slowdown in
economic growth, possibly precipitated by a disorderly unwinding of
systemic leverage, a collapse in the property market or a significant
deterioration in government finances from a large, material
crystallization of contingent liabilities.

The annual China Credit Risk Conference is jointly organized by Moody's
Investors Service and China Chengxin International Credit Rating Company
Limited (CCXI). In addition to coverage of China's credit profile, the
conference features presentations from Moody's Sub Sovereign, Financial
Institutions, Structured Finance and Corporate Finance Groups.


Last Updated (Tuesday, 17 June 2014 04:30)


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