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Estonia’s Credit Rating Affirmed by S&P on GDP Outlook, Finances

Jan. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Estonia’s credit rating was affirmed by Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services, which cited the strength of the Baltic country’s public finances and its improving growth outlook.

S&P kept Estonia’s long-term government bond rating at AA-, the fourth-highest investment grade, on par with the Czech Republic. The ratings company left the outlook at stable. Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings rate Estonia as the fifth-highest investment grade.

Estonia’s ratio of government debt to gross domestic product is the lowest in the 28-member European Union at “close to” 8 percent of GDP at the end of last year, S&P said. The Baltic nation’s economic growth, which slowed in 2013 because of weak demand from Finland and Russia, may accelerate this year on improving investment and exports, it said.

“The ratings are supported by our view of Estonia’s stable political environment, prudent government finances, and highly adaptable economy,” S&P said. “We expect Estonia’s growth to improve this year and to average more than 3 percent annually in 2014-2017.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Ott Ummelas in Kiev at oummelas@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net

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