The international credit rating agency Fitch said that the decision taken last week by the Financial Action Task Force, the FATF will not have an impact on Malta’s rating. Our country has a stable A + rating. There has also been no change in banking forecasts.
Fitch said that now much will depend on the response of the Maltese authorities. “The effectiveness of the Maltese authorities’ response will be important,” Fitch said in a statement released at the same time as Prime Minister Robert Abela was discussing the response with the social partners in the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development (MCESD).
Fitch noted the declarations of the Maltese Government that it wants to intensify the reforms as soon as possible and remarked as well that in May Moneyval had already marked the substantial progress in technical compliance that our country has made since.
“The Maltese authorities have said they will intensify their anti-money laundering efforts to achieve this as quickly as possible. In May 2021, the Council of Europe’s anti-money laundering body (MoneyVal) identified substantial progress in technical compliance.”
Referring to the economic effects on some other countries of a similar FATF decision, Fitch experts said the economic effects were minimal. While in the case of our country they refer to the banking sector, it was noted how the Maltese authorities and banks had the time to work on contingency plans.
“However, Malta’s banks and supervisory authorities have had more time to prepare a contingency plan.”
The statement by Fitch is in line with that of DBRS, another credit rating agency that said it was confident that our country would continue with the reforms.