Fitch alters Bharti Airtel rating to negative; declares at ‘BBB-‘

Fitch Ratings

On Monday, Fitch Ratings altered the whole point of view on telecom major Bharti Airtel long-term foreign-currency (FC) issuer default rating (IDR) to negative from stable, and asserted the IDR at ‘BBB-‘.

The ratings agency said the negative view point follows its correction of the outlook on India’s long-term foreign- and local-currency IDRs to negative from stable on June 18th.

Fitch also declared Bharti Airtel’s senior unsecured rating and Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) B.V.’s senior unsecured guaranteed bonds at ‘BBB-‘, and Network i2i Limited’s subordinated perpetual bond’s rating at ‘BB’.

In its declaration it revealed that Bharti Airtel’s FC IDR and senior issue ratings are not directly oppressed by India’s sovereign rating and cannot cross the country ceiling (BBB-), which depicts the transfer and convertibility risks connected with FC obligations.

“Should the sovereign IDRs be downgraded, the country ceiling may also be revised down in tandem, which would constrain Bharti’s FC IDR and senior issue ratings to ‘BB+’,” Fitch announced in a release.

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