5 May 2015EMEA analysis

S&P affirms Guernsey rating

Rating agency Standard & Poor’s has reaffirmed its AA+ rating of Guernsey, on the basis of “a wealthy and open economy, accountable institutions, and strong track record of effective and responsive policymaking”.

The report said that the ratings on Guernsey reflect S&P’s view of its high wealth and effective and predictable policy settings, coupled with high policy responsiveness.

However, these strengths are moderated by Guernsey’s “dependence on its financial services sector, lack of monetary policy flexibility, and data deficiencies on the external side that hamper our full assessment of external risks”.

AA+ is the highest that a jurisdiction such as Guernsey, without its own currency, can achieve under the ratings methodology.

Dominic Wheatley, chief executive of Guernsey Finance, said: “This continued strong rating is consistent with how we see Guernsey’s international prospects as a finance centre and endorses the Island’s positioning within the mainstream of international finance in terms of regulation, tax transparency and common reporting standards, beneficial ownership, and anti-money laundering and the funding of terrorism.

“In every aspect of cooperation and compliance with international standards we are in line with the best practice anywhere in the world. We have also maintained both our unique business environment and the ability to do business quickly and securely. More and more this combination is what clients and their advisers are looking for in an increasingly volatile world and this bodes well for Guernsey’s economic future.”

Gavin St Pier, Guernsey’s Treasury and Resources Minister, added: “This rating confirms the continued strength and robustness of Guernsey’s economy and public finances. S&P’s assessment of a wealthy and open economy, accountable institutions and prudent fiscal policies demonstrates that the Island is well positioned to thrive and grow in the years ahead.”