Waikato District Council has been given a Long-Term Local-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of 'AA+’ by Fitch, an international credit rating agency.
The rating is the highest endorsement awarded on a local government level in New Zealand, placing Waikato District Council amongst top performers.
“Receiving a first-time AA+ credit rating against a background of significant growth, COVID-19 challenges, and pending waters reform, highlights Council’s ongoing commitment to sound financial management”, says Chief Financial Officer Alison Diaz.
The credit rating will reduce the cost of borrowing, and with interest rates on the rise and an ambitious infrastructure programme ahead, couldn’t have come at a better time.
The ratings are assigned based on Fitch’s strict rating criteria for international local and regional governments, mostly looking at risk profile and debt sustainability ratios. An AA+ rating represents very high credit quality with expectations of very low default risk and a strong capacity for payment of financial commitments.
Fitch will monitor performance and review ratings annually.
You can read the rating action commentary on the Fitch website here.