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18 Jul 2016

Fitch affirms three foreign-owned Belarusian banks at 'B-'/Stable

MINSK, 18 July (BelTA) - Fitch Ratings has affirmed BPS-Sberbank's (BPS), Bank BelVEB's and Belgazprombank's (BGPB) the Long-term Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) at 'B-' with Stable Outlooks, reads the statement on the website of the rating agency, BelTA has learned.

The three banks' IDRs and Support Ratings factor in the likelihood of support they may receive from their Russian shareholders. BPS is 98.4%-owned by Sberbank of Russia (BBB-/Negative), BelVEB 97.5%-owned by Vnesheconombank, (VEB; BBB-/Negative), and BGPB is jointly owned by OAO Gazprom (BBB-/Negative) and Gazprombank; (BB+/Negative), which each hold a 49.7% stake.

“Fitch's view of potential support is based on the majority ownership, continued strong commitment of the Russian owners to the Belarus market, common branding (implying high reputational risks in case of a subsidiary default), parent-subsidiary integration (including board representation and operational controls), the track record of support to date and the low cost of any support required (given that each subsidiary accounts for a small part of parent entities' consolidated assets),” Fitch said.

Fitch Ratings, an American Corporation, makes part of the big three international rating agencies, along with Standard Poor's and Moody's.

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