Standard & Poor's rated Belarusbank at «B-»
Standard & Poor’s affirmed the largest Belarusian bank Belarusbank’s credit rating at «B-» with a stable outlook. The affirmation is due to Belarusbank’s business profile and financial performance stability despite the difficult operating conditions in Belarus.
The ratings on Belarusbank are constrained by the sovereign foreign currency credit ratings on Belarus, because the bank operates exclusively within the country and remains highly exposed to sovereign-related risk.
The bank’s stand-alone credit profile (SACP), at ’b’, is, however, one notch higher than the rating on Belarus, having improved after a capital increase in late 2011. JSC Savings Bank Belarusbank’s capitalization has strengthened following a Belarusian ruble 12.9 trillion Tier 1 capital injection by the Belarus government on December 30, 2011.
The rating agency believes Belarusbank plays a \"very important\" role for, and has a \"very strong\" link with, the government, resulting in a \"very high\" likelihood of government support in the event of need.. Despite a government announcement that it will allow the privatization of a minority stake in the bank, Standard & Poor’s analysts consider it highly unlikely in current market conditions.
President Lukashenka has met with the head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov, who visited Minsk and the Minsk Automobile Plant. Minsk has always sought to have independent links with Russian regional elites, partially, to compensate for the Kremlin's diminishing interest in Belarus. In recent years, Belarus’ contacts with the Russian regions have been extremely intense. However, with some leaders of Russian regions, primarily heads of large republics, communication was more difficult to build. As many analysts in Minsk suggested, Minsk could regard contacts between President Lukashenka and the head of Chechnya as an additional communication channel for relieving tension in relations with the Kremlin. However, most likely, a trusting relationship with Kadyrov is a value for Minsk as such, provided Kadyrov’s broad business and political interests, and a high degree of autonomy for the Chechen leader from the Kremlin.