The Fitch rating agency has placed Rusnano’s rating on revision with the possibility of downgrading, follows from the agency’s materials. Prior to this, Rusnano’s credit rating was at BBB, which means a sufficient level of creditworthiness. The agency has now placed the rating on its Rating Watch Negative (revised negative outlook, RWN). The situation with the debt of Rusnano may become a test for the state’s readiness to incur financial losses in connection with high-risk investments, the agency believes.
“Fitch will continue to closely monitor the risks associated with Rusnano and actions to address them, as well as government support measures. Further negative rating action cannot be ruled out unless Fitch sees funding stabilization or a clearer view of the funding strategy, ”the agency said in a statement.
On Friday, November 19, the Moscow Exchange suspended trading in Rusnano bonds at the direction of the Central Bank. The regulator later reported that the Central Bank received information that Rusnano was discussing with a narrow circle of creditors possible scenarios for restructuring the state company’s debt. In order not to create conditions for insider trading on the stock exchange before the official publication of information about the negotiations, the Central Bank on November 19 decided to suspend trading in Rusnano bonds at the Moscow Exchange. Trading resumed on Monday 22 November.
On the same day, when the Moscow Exchange suspended trading, Rusnano published a message on its website that the company had met with creditors and major bondholders. Rusnano discussed possible scenarios for debt restructuring in order to avoid the “most negative scenarios”. “It was stated that the accumulated disproportionate debt and the current financial model of the company require adjustments,” the company said in a statement.
Later, the Ministry of Finance reported that the government is considering various options for increasing the efficiency of Rusnano, but none of them imply a default on the company’s debts secured by a state guarantee. The government has already made a decision to change the board of directors, the department specified. Among other things, mechanisms are being worked out to exit the historical project portfolio of the state corporation.
Now nine issues of Rusnano bonds with a total volume of 71.6 billion rubles are circulating on the stock exchange. Three issues with the state guarantee of the Ministry of Finance: two for 18 billion rubles. the par value is secured, another one, for 13.4 billion rubles, is fully secured. For five issues in December, Rusnano must pay a coupon, and the issue for 4.5 billion rubles. Redeem in full on December 1. Thus, state guarantees do not apply to the issue of bonds for a total amount of about 40.2 billion rubles.