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June 19, 2017

Standard & Poor’s rating agency upgrades Quebec’s credit rating


Québec, June 16, 2017 – Rating agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) today announced that it was revising Quebec’s credit rating upwards to “AA−” for the first time since 1993.

This excellent news results from the Government of Quebec’s strict management of public finances. This year, Quebec presented its third consecutive balanced budget and the debt burden has been dropping for two years now.

S&P also explains that its decision was based on the fact that Quebec’s economy is very strong and diversified. It includes major sectors such as aerospace, transportation, telecommunications and aluminum production.

In 2016, an acceleration in economic growth resulted in a high rate of job creation. The unemployment rate in Quebec is now at a historic low.

This upgrade in the credit rating should result in an increase in the pool of investors who are likely to buy bonds issued by Quebec on the financial markets. The Government of Quebec can thus continue to benefit from advantageous borrowing costs. By controlling the cost of its debt servicing, Quebec will be able to invest more in its priorities such as health, education and infrastructure, and continue to support its economy.

DBRS and Fitch confirmed Quebec’s credit rating with a stable outlook, on June 9 and 13 respectively. Rating agencies Moody’s and Japan Credit Rating Agency are expected to announce their decisions in the coming weeks.

Quote:

We are very pleased with the decision by the rating agency Standard & Poor’s to upgrade Quebec’s credit rating. This will translate into tangible benefits for the population and savings in debt servicing that can be invested in our priorities – healthcare and education. This is great news that will benefit Quebecers. This decision confirms that the measures we have taken since 2014 have significantly improved Quebec’s economic and financial situation. Finally, we welcome the positive message that such a decision sends out all over the world, to all those who may be thinking of investing in Quebec – an open, competitive and attractive economy.

Philippe Couillard, Premier of Quebec

Carlos Leitão, Finance Minister of Quebec

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