DOHA, (Reuters) – Qatar Telecommunications Co (Qtel) on Thursday said it expected no “material impact” from a downgrade by ratings agency Moody’s.
Moody’s downgraded Qtel’s long term ratings to A2 from A1 on Wednesday, citing a change in its view on government support assumptions for government-related issuers.
“The one notch downgrade mainly results from Moody’s change in assumptions and methodology regarding government support in line with other government related issuers,” Qtel said in a statement.
“This follows similar rating actions for other GRIs in the GCC region after the debt restructuring announcement of Dubai Holding in late 2009,” it said.
Moody’s said that while it considers government support of Qtel to still be high, the company does not benefit from an explicit guarantee of the Qatari Government or a special legal status.
The ratings agency said it continues to assume government support for Qtel to be underpinned by interventionist government policies in support of the economy and a track record of government bail-outs, in recent years most visible for the local banking system.
Qtel posted a 45 percent drop in second-quarter net profit, after the year-ago quarter was boosted by a one-time gain.
Its shares rose 1.2 percent to 167.30 riyals in the Qatari bourse on Thursday.