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Rating Action

Fitch Assigns Hanwha General Insurance First-Time IFS of 'A'; Outlook Stable

The rating reflects HWG's adequate capital buffer, improving operating profitability and solid market presence in the competitive local non-life market. 

China Slowdown Would Pressure Some US States

If a slowdown in China's economy led to a decline in US exports, several states with substantial agriculture exports and one with aircraft exports would likely see localized declines in economic activity and, thus, tax revenues, says Fitch Ratings. However, we would expect states with a high volume of imports from China would not be affected.

Korean Diplomacy Effort Has Scope to Ease Structural Risk

The summit meeting held this week between the US and North Korean leaders continues the de-escalation of tensions on the Korean peninsula; while the joint statement on denuclearisation, if followed through, could eventually allow the normalisation of North Korea's international relations and reduce the structural risks to South Korea's sovereign credit profile.

Capital Regs to Raise Resilience of Sri Lanka Finance Cos

New capital-adequacy regulations for Sri Lankan finance companies are likely to improve the resilience of the sector to economic shocks, but will add to capitalisation pressures - particularly for the country's numerous small-scale finance companies.

Rising Competition to Pressure China's Big Three Airlines

The Chinese airline sector is likely to continue to grow strongly over the long term, supported by rising household incomes, infrastructure investment and market-oriented reforms that are driving improvements in airline efficiency and customer experience, say Fitch Ratings.

Rating Action

Fitch Upgrades POSCO to 'BBB+'; Outlook Stable

The upgrade in POSCO's ratings reflects our view of robust steel-industry fundamentals and the company's improved financial profile. The company's strong operating performance across all divisions and restructuring efforts have enabled it to reduce debt and its FFO adjusted net leverage fell to 1.6x in 2017, which is below our positive guideline of 2.5x.

Rating Action

Thailand Affirmed at 'BBB+'; Outlook Stable

Thailand's 'BBB+' rating is underpinned by solid external and public finances, which enhance resiliency to economic shocks. 

China's New Renewables Policy to Hit Solar Manufacturers

China's decision to replace the feed-in-tariff (FiT) mechanism with a bidding process for most new wind and solar power projects will lower tariffs and reduce the incentive for operators to increase capacity. The strongest impact will fall on producers of solar panel equipment, with solar capacity additions likely to decline sharply.

Rating Action

Fitch Assigns Vietnam Electricity First-Time 'BB' Rating; Outlook Stable

Fitch Ratings has assigned Vietnam Electricity (EVN) a Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of 'BB' with a Stable Outlook. The agency has also assigned EVN a senior unsecured rating of 'BB'. EVN is the first government-linked non-financial corporate rated by Fitch in Vietnam.

Stable Australian Mortgage Performance Despite Seasonal Arrears Increase

Australia's 30+ day mortgage arrears increased by 12bp to 1.13% in 1Q18 from the previous quarter, which is consistent with the seasonal increase in spending during the end-of-year holiday period. 


China Growth 1pp per Year Slower in Deleveraging Scenario

China's GDP growth rate would be reduced by 1 percentage point per year over the medium term in a hypothetical scenario where corporate debt growth was steadily reduced to a rate in line with underlying nominal GDP growth. The growth shock would be driven by the sharp slowdown in business investment necessary to significantly reduce the corporate sector's borrowing requirement. 
Related: Chinese Deleveraging Would Test Some Emerging Markets

Fitch's Roche discusses the cartel charges against ANZ Bank and other banks in Australia on Bloomberg TV

Australia’s banking industry faces an unprecedented criminal prosecution as Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. and two of its underwriters, brace for cartel allegations over a AUD2.5 billion (USD1.9 billion) share sale. Bloomberg TV spoke to Fitch's Tim Roche on the credit rating implications for the sector.

Related: Fitch: No Ratings Impact from CBA Money-Laundering Resolution

Big Losses Pressure Indian Banks' Viability Ratings

The heavy losses and capital erosion reported by Indian banks in their financial year 2018 (FY18, to March 2018) results add to pressure on Viability Ratings, says Fitch Ratings. Cumulative losses at the state banks were large enough to wipe out almost all of the government's capital injections of USD13 billion in FY18, and weak performance is likely to continue in the coming year.

Japanese Non-life Insurers' FYE18 Results Strong but Affected by Overseas Weather-Related Events

Underwriting results for Japan's top-four non-life insurers remained strong but overseas weather-related losses (including US hurricanes) affected their results in the financial year ended March 2018 (FYE18), says Fitch Ratings in a new report. 

Special Report: APAC Banks

US Fed Hikes should be Manageable for Asia-Pacific Banks

Gradual, well-signalled US monetary tightening over the next few years should be manageable for most Asia-Pacific banks, but markets with higher dependence on foreign funding and external debt levels will be more vulnerable due to potentially higher market, credit and liquidity risks. 

Falling Coal Investment to Support Asian Prices

The long-term outlook for the Asian thermal coal prices is improving, amid rising regional demand and falling mining investment, which partly reflects tighter environmental policies at banks, says Fitch Ratings. Mining companies in the region are likely to face less margin pressure than under our previous price assumptions, which, along with lower capex, could support deleveraging. However, there are more constraints on their ability to generate new revenue streams, while refinancing risks may also rise for smaller miners. 

Higher Commodity Prices Lower Leverage for Australian Corporates

Stable-to-higher commodity-price assumptions are driving market expectations for further improvement in the aggregate credit profile of Australia's top-100 listed non-financial corporates (Fitch ASX100 portfolio) over the financial years ending June 2018 to 2019 (FY18-FY19), Fitch Ratings says in a report. 

Milken Institute 2018 Global Conference

Milken Institute 2018 Global Conference - De-Risking Emerging Markets Investments

Jeremy Carter, Chief Credit Officer, joins panelists at the 2018 Milken Institute Global Conference to discuss the de-risking of emerging markets. ​

Fitch on SOEs

2018 Fitch on SOEs- Impact of New Methodology across Sectors and Regions

Ying Wang, Head of APAC Energy & Utilities and Lucas Aristizabal, Head of LatAm Oil & Gas, discuss SOE standalone credit profiles and ratings relative to the sovereign in each region and explain how the range of scores differs across sectors in Asia and LatAm.

Rating Action

Vietnam Upgraded to 'BB'; Outlook Stable

Vietnam's track record of policy-making focused on strong macroeconomic performance has been improving. GDP growth accelerated to 6.8% in 2017 from 6.2% in 2016 supported by the export-oriented manufacturing sector and continued growth in services. 

Malaysia Election Results Make Policy Shift More Likely

The surprise victory of the opposition Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition in Malaysia's general elections held on 9 May means a much higher likelihood of fiscal and economic policy change. The PH won 113 of 222 parliamentary seats, resulting in Malaysia's first electoral transfer of power since independence in 1957. 

China Links Weaken Hong Kong Banks' Operating Environment

Fitch Ratings has cut its assessment of the operating environment for Hong Kong's banks to 'a'/stable from 'a+'/negative due to the growing influence of the links between the territory and mainland China. Click to watch the Bloomberg interview and listen to the RTHK interview.

Slower Credit Growth to Pressure Top Australian Banks' Earnings

Fitch Ratings expects Australia's four major banks' earnings to come under pressure in the near term as credit growth, especially in the residential mortgage segment, is slowing and non-interest revenue is likely to remain stagnant or decrease. 

Related: Major Aussie Banks Positioned to Withstand Housing Risks


Fitch’s Schwartz Discusses Sovereign Rating Implications of Korea Developments

Stephen Schwartz, Head of Asia-Pacific Sovereign Ratings, speaks to CNBC Asia about the political risks and fiscal challenges arising from the reduction of tensions between North and South Korea. He also discusses the risks of trade protectionism for Korea and the APAC region.


Peer Review

Not All Philippine Banks Should be Rated the Same

Not all Philippines banks warrant the same ratings. The three largest banks would be more resilient to a downturn than their mid-tier counterparts, based on their stronger franchises, higher-quality portfolios and record of execution. These differences are reflected in our ratings, with the larger banks rated 'BBB-' while the mid-tier are one notch lower, at 'BB+'.

Rating Action

Fitch Affirms Australia at 'AAA'; Outlook Stable

Australia's 'AAA' rating is underpinned by strong governance, high income levels, and a track record of macroeconomic stability. An effective policymaking framework has supported 26 consecutive years of GDP growth without a recession, despite substantial external, financial and commodity price shocks during this period. 

Housing Downturn Could Pressure Australian Bank Ratings

A stress test published today by Fitch Ratings shows that the mortgage portfolios of Australia's four major banks could withstand a significant housing market downturn without experiencing losses that - in isolation - threaten the banks' viability. However, ratings would be likely to come under pressure in severe scenarios where banks also suffer from large second-order economic effects, including a fall in consumer spending and higher losses from banks' business loan portfolios. 

Korea Summit Eases Tensions but Does Not Eliminate Risks

The summit meeting between the leaders of North and South Korea eases tensions on the peninsula, which have been elevated in recent months, but does not eliminate risks associated with the military stand-off, says Fitch Ratings. The process of normalizing relations is likely to be lengthy and unpredictable, even if begun in earnest. 

Fitch Assigns Port of Melbourne's Lonsdale Finance First-Time 'BBB'; Stable Outlook

Fitch Ratings has assigned Lonsdale Finance Pty Ltd a First-Time Long Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of 'BBB'. The Outlook is Stable.

Lonsdale Finance is the issuing entity for the Port of Melbourne. The rating reflects Port of Melbourne's role as a primary port of call serving the Victorian and broader Australian market, with a diversified landlord port business model benefiting from a stable regulatory regime and portfolio of long-term property leases governing operations of its well-established port facilities. The company's debt structure is senior, but the lack of strong covenants, non-amortising profile, high gearing and considerable refinancing risk constrain its rating.

Investors Optimistic on Stability of Japanese Banks

Attendees at Fitch Ratings' latest series of outreach on Japanese banks were generally optimistic about the stability of Japan's banking sector.  Fitch's stable outlook for Japanese banks reflects the stabilising operating environment, characterised by slow-yet-steady economic growth, improvement in corporate profitability and low unemployment.

Related: Japanese Mega Banks Set to Build More Capital

Fitch's Bauer Discusses APAC Banks' Property Risks on CNBC Asia

Sabine Bauer of the Financial Institutions team discusses household indebtedness in Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand and other Asia-Pacific markets, as well as the implications for the region's banks in a live interview with CNBC Asia's Bernard Lo and Akiko Fujita.

Related: APAC Banks' Property Risks are Mounting

Mongolia's Immediate Banking and Economic Risks Receding

A recent asset-quality review has eased uncertainty over capital adequacy in the Mongolian banking system, says Fitch Ratings. In addition, progress in tackling customs bottlenecks at the Chinese border suggests a potential threat to the growth outlook is being addressed. These developments come against a backdrop of economic recovery, fiscal consolidation, rising foreign-exchange reserves and abating external refinancing risks. However, a risk remains that the authorities' commitment to IMF reform targets will be diluted by the improved conditions. 

Thai Bank Merger Incentives May Shift Sector Landscape

The tax incentives encouraging Thai banks to merge could lead to a significant shift in the local sector landscape, with one or two of the largest domestic banks emerging in dominant positions. Larger national champions would be in a stronger position to cope with competition from regional rivals, which is set to intensify along with ASEAN banking integration. 

TLAC Requirement on Nomura First Among D-SIFIs in APAC

The addition of Nomura Holdings (NHI) to the list of entities that must comply with total loss-absorbing capacity (TLAC) regulation marks the first time that an APAC regulator has specified TLAC requirements for a domestic systemically important financial institution (D-SIFI).

Chinese Offshore Wind Growth Reflects Improved Returns

Growth in Chinese offshore wind power capacity has accelerated in recent years, reflecting lower costs and a relative improvement in tariffs compared with onshore wind power. The government's target of increasing offshore wind capacity to 5 gigawatts (GW) by 2020 is likely to be achieved at the rate of construction.

Rising Receivables Pressuring Chinese Pharma Distributors

Chinese pharmaceutical distributors are facing increasingly long receivables days, reflecting lengthening delays in payments from public hospitals. This adds to their working-capital needs, with a negative impact on distributors' liquidity, profitability and leverage.

rating action

Sri Lanka's USD Bond Rated 'B+(EXP)'

The rating would be sensitive to any changes in Sri Lanka's Long-Term Foreign-Currency IDR. In February 2018, Fitch affirmed Sri Lanka's Long-Term Foreign-Currency IDR at 'B+' with a Stable Outlook. The Long-Term Local-Currency IDR is also 'B+' with a Stable Outlook.

Shipping Can Manage US-China Tariffs, But Risks Rising

The immediate impact of potential tariffs may be manageable for both container and dry-bulk shipping. Some of the goods under the proposed tariffs are likely to continue to be imported by the US or China due to the limited substitutes. 

US-China Tariff Threats Raise Global Trade Risks

Escalating tariff proposals by the US and Chinese governments are increasing the risks of a full-blown trade war. The most likely outcome remains a negotiated solution to US-China trade tensions that has limited effect on the near-term growth outlook in both countries and leaves our base case global macroeconomic forecasts intact. However, the risk of a more material impact is growing.

China Sovereign Update

Tune into the latest Fixed Interests and listen to James McCormack, Global Head of Sovereigns & Supranational Group, Fitch Ratings and Andrew Fennell, Director, Sovereigns, Fitch Ratings, discuss Fitch’s recent affirmation of China’s ‘A+’ rating. They explore current policy settings, the growth outlook, provide insights into the deleveraging story and give Fitch’s view on whether household debt will become a credit issue.

Indonesian Bank Pressures Easing in Improving Environment

The operating environment facing Indonesian banks is gradually improving, driven by steady economic performance, easing conditions in the commodity sector and macroeconomic policies consistently geared towards maintaining stability. These trends are helping to stabilise banks' asset quality, and could have positive rating implications for some Indonesian banks, if sustained.

Exclusive Interview: Indonesian Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati

Stephen Schwartz, Head of Asia-Pacific Sovereigns, speaks with Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Indonesia’s Minister of Finance. Areas of discussion included the outlook for Indonesia’s economy, fiscal policies, and the implications of political elections and global monetary policy on the country.

China's Rising Household Debt May Build Medium-Term Risks

The continued rapid rise of China's household debt burden could provide the authorities with more time to rein in corporate leverage without jeopardising growth targets, but would not resolve the economy's underlying reliance on credit and may create medium- to long-term risks of its own.

Fitch Ratings Raises Stake in Sri Lanka Unit

Fitch Ratings has increased its ownership of Fitch Ratings Lanka Ltd. to approximately 89% from 45% through its acquisition of the equity interest of several shareholders.

Frontier Vision

Frontier Market Exports Accelerating

In 4Q17, GDP growth picked up across several frontier markets, including Nigeria, Senegal, Zambia, Vietnam, Armenia, Georgia, Belarus, Costa Rica and Jamaica, while economic activity slowed in Jordan, Iraq, El Salvador, Honduras, Mongolia and Namibia.

Belt-Road Bonds May Support Panda Market, Face Obstacles

New guidelines on the issuance of "Belt and Road" bonds on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges may offer project developers better access to cheaper funding in China and could support development of the panda bond market.

Komodo Bonds Provide New Option for Indonesian Issuers

Komodo bonds provide a viable financing option for Indonesian entities and could support state-owned infrastructure firms in meeting the large funding needs associated with the government's aggressive infrastructure drive. 

2018 Milken Institute MENA Summit

One Belt One Road - Exporting China's Domestic Development Story​

James​​ McCormack, Global Head of Sovereign and Supranational ratings, joins thought leaders in Abu Dhabi to assess China's One Belt One Road Initiative, as a part of Fitch Ratings' sponsorship of the Milken Institute inaugural MENA Summit.

APAC Corporates - Upgrades Exceed Downgrades for First Time Since 2013

APAC's 4Q17 witnessed 14 upgrades against only 5 downgrades, causing our 12-month rolling ratio of downgrades to upgrades to fall below 1 for the first time since 3Q13. The number of Positive Outlooks rose sharply to 37 in 4Q17 (4Q16:18) exceeding the 33 Negative Outlooks (4Q16: 32).

APAC Record Offshore Issuance May Create Pockets of Risk

APAC non-financial corporates doubled their issuance of foreign-currency bonds to a record high of USD224 billion in 2017, and momentum is likely to remain strong in 2018. Strong recent issuance could add to isolated vulnerabilities in markets and sectors that have high FX exposure, but we do not believe offshore borrowing represents a systemic risk across the region.

APAC Insurance Regulator Actions Show Proactive Approach

The latest interventions followed increases in minimum regulatory capital in the Philippines and exposure of under-reserving in New Zealand, which is testament to the regulators' active approach. 

China Securitisation Issuance Hits High in 2017; Credit Remains Sound

China's securitisation issuance in the two main trading markets surged to a record high of CNY1,386 billion from 647 transactions in 2017, compared with CNY865 billion from 487 transactions in 2016, according to our latest China Structured Finance Quarterly. 

HK, Singapore Take Different Paths on Long-Run Challenges

The Hong Kong and Singapore annual budgets focus on raising potential growth and meeting long-term challenges posed by population ageing. Hong Kong's budget signalled a willingness to adopt a more interventionist long-term growth strategy, which would move it closer to the model traditionally applied by Singapore. 

Indian NBFIs to Raise Masala Issuance to Support Growth

Indian non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs) are likely to become more active issuers of masala bonds over the medium term, reflecting their rising need for diversified funding to support growth. Improving recognition of the masala bond market among international investors could help to improve relative pricing, but only larger NBFIs with strong reputations are likely to find masala issuance viable.

Fitch Group Appoints Chairman for Asia Pacific

Fitch Group today announced it has appointed Bernard de Lattre as Chairman, Asia Pacific. In this new non-executive role, Mr. de Lattre will work closely with the management team of Fitch Ratings in particular to implement the firm's strategic growth plans in Asia. His appointment is effective immediately.

Fitch Named Best High Yield, Sovereigns and Public Finance Rating Agency

Fitch Ratings has been recognised as the best credit rating agency in 2017 for high yield, sovereigns, and public finance by The Asset, a Hong Kong-based magazine covering Asia's financial industry since 1999. It is the agency's first wins for the high yield and sovereigns categories, and the third accolade in a row for public finance.

Risks to Watch: China Cross Sector Views

As part of Fitch’s Risks to Watch video series, Grace Wu, Brian Coulton, Ying Wang and Terry Gao provide a 360-degree view of China in 2018, covering sovereigns, corporates, financial institutions, and public finance.

Special Report: APAC Banks

US Fed Hikes should be Manageable for Asia-Pacific Banks

Gradual, well-signalled US monetary tightening over the next few years should be manageable for most Asia-Pacific banks, but markets with higher dependence on foreign funding and external debt levels will be more vulnerable due to potentially higher market, credit and liquidity risks. 


Sing Chan Ng


Sing Chan Ng

Business Inquiries

+65 6796 7210

Stephen Schwartz


Stephen Schwartz


+852 2263 9938

Buddhika Piyasena


Buddhika Piyasena


+65 6796 7223

Jonathan Cornish

Financial Institutions

Jonathan Cornish


+852 2263 9901

Terry Gao

International Public Finance

Terry Gao


+852 2263 9972

Jeff Liew


Jeff Liew


+852 2263 9939

Ben McCarthy

Structured Finance

Ben McCarthy


+61 2 8256 0388

Bashar Al Natoor

Islamic Finance

Bashar Al Natoor

Analytical Group Head

+971 4424 1242