Friday, January 7, 2011

MARC upgrades Tenaga RM3b debt notes

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian Rating Corporation Bhd has upgraded TENAGA NASIONAL BHD []'s (TNB) RM3 billion debt notes and the outlook is stable.

MARC said on Friday, Jan 7 the upgrade of TNB's rating reflects MARC's revised assumption of very strong government support for TNB's obligations based on its role in the national energy policy and its economic importance as the country's principal energy supplier.

The rating agency upgraded TNB' issuer and Islamic debt ratings to AAA and AAA ID respectively from AA+ and AA+ ID.

The rating action affects the following outstanding issues: i) RM1.0 billion Al-Bai Bithaman Ajil Notes Issuance Facility; and ii) RM2.0 billion Al-Bai' Bithaman Ajil Bonds.

To recap, MARC said TNB is responsible for Malaysia's transmission grid and accounts for 47.4% of the country's generation output.

TNB remains a government-controlled entity; it is publicly regulated and the government's golden share in TNB gives it veto power in major decisions of the company.

'MARC believes that the government has strong incentives to ensure the long-term financial sustainability of TNB and continues to exhibit the requisite commitment, notwithstanding the observed volatility in its financial performance stemming from fluctuations in fuel prices,' it said.

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