CHICAGO, September 24 (Fitch) Fitch Ratings has affirmed the
rating on the
following notes issued by Belize Sovereign Investments III
--$85.7 million notes at 'A+'; Outlook Stable.
The notes are backed by two restructured government of Belize
obligations (underlying notes) from the country's debt
restructuring in 2007. In
addition, the notes benefit from two insurance policies
Steadfast Insurance Company (Steadfast) covering non-payment by
the GOB. The
rating of the notes addresses timely payment of interest and
principal on a
In August 2012, the GOB announced that it was unable to make
payment on its U.S.
dollar Step-Up Bonds due 2029, which include the underlying
notes. After making
partial payment in September 2012, the GOB entered into
negotiations and came to an agreement with bondholders in March
restructuring agreement entailed a reduced interest rate and
slight haircut in
the face value of the underlying notes.
In September 2012, in light of the GOB's partial payment,
Steadfast made payment
to BSI under the insurance policy and BSI made full payment of
interest to the
noteholders. As a result of the restructuring of the underlying
trustee of BSI must submit a claim to Steadfast on each payment
date for the
difference between the coupon payments made by the previous
underlying notes and
the step-up coupon payments of the newly restructured notes.
payment to BSI under the insurance policy in March and September
2013. The claim
submission will also reflect the mismatch in principal when the
begins to amortize in 2019.
KEY RATING DRIVERS
The rating action reflects: (i) Steadfast's claim payments to
the trust which
guarantees timely payment of interest on the notes; and (ii)
affirmation of the Insurer Financial Strength Rating (IFS,
Stable) assigned to Steadfast.
The rating assigned to the notes is sensitive to Steadfast's
continue making claim payments to the trust under the insurance
downgrade to the IFS assigned to Steadfast could result in a
downgrade to the
rating of the notes.
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
70 W Madison Street
Chicago, IL 60602
Media Relations: Elizabeth Fogerty, New York, Tel: +1 (212) 908
Additional information is available at www.fitchratings.com.
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