Fitch Ratings has affirmed the Province’s credit rating as AAA and its long-term outlook as stable, explaining the rating reflects prudent fiscal management and a stable financial performance, Minister of Finance Michael de Jong announced.
Fitch praises the Province’s strong financial planning and controls, noting, “Contingencies, forecast allowances, and conservative economic-growth assumptions are all long-standing aspects of the government’s budgetary planning supporting Fitch’s positive assessment of British Columbia’s fiscal management.”
The agency asserts that B.C. is “a key component of Canada’s overall economic profile,” and says, “British Columbia’s overall economic profile continues to provide a solid and diverse revenue base.”
Fitch points out that the Province’s strong fiscal discipline enabled B.C. to return to consecutive balanced budgets. The agency calls the Economic Stability Mandate a “key factor in expense management,” noting that by February, more than two-thirds of unionized public-sector employees were covered by tentative or ratified agreements.
Since November 2004, the Province has received seven credit rating upgrades. British Columbia continues to maintain the highest credit rating possible with Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s and Fitch. Moody’s most recently affirmed its Aaa rating in March following Budget 2015 and upgraded its outlook to stable, while Standard & Poor's most recently affirmed its AAA rating in May 2014 following Budget 2014. DBRS affirmed the Province’s AA (high) rating in April 2015.
Minister of Finance Michael de Jong -
“Fitch’s affirmation of our AAA credit rating and stable outlook validates that our fiscal discipline has enabled B.C. to return to consecutive balanced budgets. This is further confirmation that our hard work is paying off.
“We know that British Columbia is a great place to invest. Triple-A credit ratings reinforce the opportunities that this Province offers, and help reduce our borrowing costs so we can continue to invest in services, programs and infrastructure for British Columbians.”
Ministry of Finance