Standard & Poor's raises CAF's rating one notch

- The agency lifted the financial institution's credit rating to AA-, with a stable outlook.

- S&P's decision follows Moody's upgrade earlier this year to Aa3.

Dec 20, 2012, 17:55 ET from CAF

CARACAS, Venezuela, Dec. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- CAF –development bank of Latin America– today obtained additional recognition for its financial strength and stability, when U.S. credit rating agency Standard & Poor's raised its credit risk rating for long term debt to AA- from A+ and, for its short-term debt, to A-1+ from to A-1.

CAF President Enrique Garcia said this new recognition amid the global financial crisis is an endorsement of the institution's financial management. "The member nations' commitment has been of great importance for achievements like the one we have obtained today," he said.

Indeed, in less than a year, the institution's shareholder countries signed agreements for the $2 billion paid-in capital increase decided by CAF's board in November 2011. Between 2007 and 2011, paid-in capital increases agreed by the shareholders amounted to $6.3 billion.

"Thanks to the strengthening of its capital base, CAF will be able to approve loans for regional development for up to $80 billion in the 2012-2017 period, increase the loan portfolio to more than $30 billion, and double its capital by 2017," Mr. Garcia said.

Standard & Poor's decision, released today, is based on CAF's shareholders support throughout the history of the institution. S&P also highlighted the substantial expansion of the shareholder base, a cautious management of assets and liabilities, and the continued improvement of financial indicators.

CAF has been active in prestigious capital markets as part of a very select group of debt issuers, and has played a catalytic role by attracting funds to Latin America from other regions and from a diversified pool of investors, thereby promoting investment and business opportunities across  the region.

CAF's debt placements between 1993 and 2012 totaled approximately $17 billion, which translated directly into investments in development projects in Latin America. "The institution's continued presence in various capital markets has allowed us to issue more than $2.8 billion [in international debt] in 2012," Mr. Garcia said.

CAF currently has four credit ratings awarded by the most prestigious international risk agencies: Standard & Poor's (AA-), Moody's (Aa3), Japan Credit Rating (AA-) and Fitch Ratings (A +).

The mission of CAF –development bank of Latin America– is to promote sustainable development and regional integration, by financing projects in the public and private sectors and providing technical cooperation and other specialized services. Established in 1970, it currently has 18 shareholder nations –16 in Latin America and the Caribbean, along with Spain and Portugal– and 14 private banks, and is a major source of multilateral financing as well as an important source of knowledge in the region. More information at