Moody's assigns Baa3 to bond issue of Bank Muscat

Moody's Investors Service has assigned a Baa3 long-term domestic currency debt rating to the senior fixed rate bonds due in 2013 to be issued by BankMuscat (SAOG).

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By  Massoud Derhally Published  May 25, 2003

Moody's Investors Service has assigned a Baa3 long-term domestic currency debt rating to the senior fixed rate bonds due in 2013 to be issued by BankMuscat (SAOG).

The Baa3 global domestic currency rating is placed at the same level as the Baa3 foreign currency deposit rating already assigned to BankMuscat.

Moody's existing ratings for BankMuscat (Baa3/Prime-3 for long- and
short-term foreign currency deposits and D+ for financial strength),
reflect the bank's good franchise in its domestic market as the biggest bank in Oman, with a market share of more than one third of total banking assets.

The bank's franchise is also enhanced by its relationship with the Diwan of the Royal Court (its largest shareholder), which provides the bank with easy access to both government and private business, said Moody's.

The ratings take into account the bank's adequate financial performance, which is showing improving earning power, and its adequate capital position. However, moderately high levels of non-performing loans and tight, but improving, liquidity remain concerns.

BankMuscat had total assets of OMR1,542 million (US$4,011 million) as of December 2002.

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