S&P affirms top ratings for SingTel

Staff Writer
29 Sep 2006


Credit ratings agency Standard and Poor's affirmed its top ratings on SingTel and its Australian subsidiary Optus, an AFP report said.


The AFP report said outlooks for both companies are stable, according to the US debt ratings firm.


Both firms' ratings of 'A+/A-1' ratings were affirmed, the AFP report said.


'The ratings of SingTel reflect its favorable business position in its core markets, Singapore and Australia, strong cash flow measures and diversified exposure,' Standard and Poor's credit analyst Yasmin Wirjawan was quoted as saying.


'However, these strengths are offset by limited growth in its key markets due to high penetration rates in Singapore and Australia.'


SingTel also has substantial stakes in mobile phone operators in India , Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand.


Optus contributes more than half of SingTel's consolidated operational earnings before the deduction of interest expenses, taxes, depreciation, and amortization.


'Despite limited growth in its core markets, Standard and Poor's expects the rating on SingTel to be driven by its ability to maintain solid market position and steady cash flows,' Wirjawan said.


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