News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – Finance Minister Curtis Dickinson today announced that ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) has affirmed Bermuda’s A+ long-term sovereign credit and senior unsecured debt ratings as well as its A-1 short-term rating and its AA+ transfer and convertibility assessment as “Stable”.

In a statement issued today, the Minister said: “In light of our intention to issue Government bonds, S&P performed a review on Bermuda’s sovereign creditworthiness. While there is an expectation that the overall debt level will have a modest increase, S&P considered our healthy current account surpluses and large liquid assets were sufficient to support us through an economic recovery next year.

“I am pleased to report S&P has affirmed Bermuda’s A+ long-term sovereign credit and senior unsecured debt ratings and importantly that their outlook remains stable. A significant factor was the Government’s prudent management of the COVID-19 pandemic which resulted in the safe and successful reopening of our economy, allowing businesses to reopen and people to go back to work.

“Of note to S&P’s favourable outlook was the resumption of commercial flights and reopening of most nonessential sectors in July, which is expected to help to largely confine the negative impact of the pandemic to 2020.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significantly negative impact on our economy and continues to present a multitude of challenges, but this Government continues to persevere, adapt, and innovate to satisfy new demands for financial assistance, and to ensure that there are funds to execute the normal functions of Government.

“Whilst we recognize there is still much work to be done, we view S&P’s affirmation as a vote of confidence that Government’s people-centered approach to our financial obligations is correct and is motivation to work even harder to get the Bermuda economy back on track.

“I maintain that this positive rating is a result of a collective effort, and I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has played a role in helping the Government to get our economy going again. Whether it is by supporting our local businesses, creating new job opportunities, or instituting new training schemes to retool local workers, your efforts have not gone unnoticed and are greatly appreciated.”