Fitch rates Panama Canal with an “A”

The Fitch rating agency confirmed an “A” rating for the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) reflecting a solid revenue profile and low leverage.

Fitch Ratings notes that the Panama Canal provides a unique connectivity and time savings for world maritime trade.

The rating agency believes that the rating outlook is stable, given the strength of the Panama Canal in the economic recession and its strong competitive position, supported by income resulting from the opening of the expanded Canal, as well as sources of diversified income along with its robust toll structure that contributes to a strong rating.

Fitch Ratings has affirmed the strategic importance of the Panama Canal and the legal framework that provides it autonomy and allows it to have a higher assessment than the sovereign rating of Panama by three levels above the Republic. It added that the ACP compares favorably with other qualified intermodal transport entities.

Fitch’s rating comes just two months after the opening of the expanded Canal. Since then, more than 160 ships have transited through the new locks, including container ships, vehicle carriers, tankers and the new market segment of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The significant demand shown by the maritime industry reinforces the need for the enlargement, its potential and the benefits to world trade.

A month ago, Standard & Poors (S&P) Global Ratings confirmed the rating “A-“ for corporate credit and long-term debt for the ACP, reiterating confidence of the agency in the management, operation and investment by the entity.

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