S&P assigns OPEC Fund AA/A-1+, Positive Outlook

S&P Global Ratings has assigned a rating of AA/A-1+, positive outlook to the OPEC Fund in its inaugural assessment of the international development institution, stressing the Fund's “extremely strong” financial risk profile and capital base as well as its strong funding and liquidity positions.

The rating agency further underlines the OPEC Fund's “strong enterprise risk profile” and its “very strong” track record of preferred creditor treatment, OPEC Fund said in a press release.

The rating follows an earlier assessment by Fitch Ratings of AA+ with stable outlook in July. The OPEC Fund plans to expand its lending operations and is therefore seeking to diversify its funding sources, a cornerstone of the institution's Strategic Framework 2030. Established in 1976, the OPEC Fund has to date disbursed US$22 billion for development projects in 125 countries worldwide, addressing basic needs and supporting countries to deliver on their long term sustainable development goals.

OPEC Fund Director-General Abdulhamid Alkhalifa welcomed the rating and said: “This assessment is testimony to our very strong financial and operational foundation as well as to our strong track-record of delivering development impact. For more than 45 years the OPEC Fund has made major contributions in alleviating poverty, strengthening communities and empowering people. This has made our institution one of the lead partners in south-south cooperation. Today's rating is an important building block in our strategy to further expand our operations and deepen our impact.”

OPEC Fund Assistant Director-General Tarek Sherlala added: “The S&P rating is confirmation not only of our strong position but also of the significance of our strategy. This rating will be a key enabler for the implementation of our planned lending growth and further support our drive to help countries deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals and address current emergencies such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the climate challenge.”