Nov 27 (Reuters) - (The following statement was released by the rating agency)
Fitch Ratings has assigned Indonesia-based PT Bank Permata (Permata) a National Long-Term Rating of ‘AAA(idn)'. The Outlook is Stable. Permata is the seventh-largest bank by assets in Indonesia.
‘AAA’ National Ratings denote expectations of the lowest default risk relative to other issuers or obligations in the same country. This rating is assigned to issuers or obligations with the lowest expectation of default risk relative to all other issuers or obligations in the same country.
Fitch rates Permata at ‘AAA(idn)', which is the highest rating on national scale, to reflect the high probability of support from major shareholder Standard Chartered Bank (SCB, AA-/Stable). Although Fitch views Permata as being of limited importance to SCB based on its criteria “Rating FI Subsidiaries and Holding Companies”, the agency believes that Indonesia is an important market for SCB. While SCB only owns 44.56% in the bank, there is a degree of management oversight as Permata’s risk management follows that of SCB and a few key senior managers come from SCB.
The rating is driven by support from SCB rather than PT Astra International Tbk (AI), which also owns 44.56% of Permata. Nonetheless, both SCB and AI exercise oversight through Permata’s Board of Commissioners. Fitch also notes that AI is committed to its investment in the bank. AI is a market leader in the automotive, agribusiness, heavy equipment and information technology sectors in Indonesia.
Any perceived weakening of support from or significant dilution in ownership by SCB would put pressure on Permata’s National Rating. However, it would take a multiple notch downgrade of SCB’s Long-Term Issuer Default Rating before Permata’s National Long-Term Rating is affected.