August 8, 2019 / 1:14 PM / 16 days ago

Russia's Gazprom says domestic ratings would lower pressure on banks, rates

MOSCOW, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Gazprom, Russia’s top gas producer, believes that using domestic ratings in the Basel III reform, something the central bank opposes, would lower pressure on banks and lending rates, Deputy Chief Executive Famil Sadygov told Reuters.

Gazprom has added its voice to those of officials who challenge how the central bank is instructing the banking sector to comply with the ‘Basel III’ rules: the central bank wants in-house assessments while the finance ministry says it should be based on ratings by domestic agencies.

“It is very hard to forecast how accessible the external market will be for Russian borrowers for political reasons, so the development of our own financial market, including rating agencies, is timely,” Sadygov said.

“We believe that using national ratings would make it possible to significantly lower pressure on (banking) capital, having a positive impact on the cost of borrowing, both for borrowers and banks.” (Reporting by Tatiana Voronova Writing by Katya Golubkova Editing by Andrew Osborn)

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