The drop in China’s exports caused by Europe’s debt crisis may affect whether Moody’s Investors Service raises the nation’s sovereign debt rating, said Tom Byrne, a senior vice president at the company.
Moody’s raised China’s foreign- and local-currency debt ratings to Aa3, the fourth-highest out of 10 investment-grade rankings, in November 2010. It is the only one of the three biggest credit-rating companies with a “positive” outlook, an indication the rating may be raised usually within two years.
“If you get a slowdown in exports, it feeds into domestic employment, into wages, into investment, so it would have wider ramifications,” Byrne, director of analysis for Moody’s sovereign risk group in Asia and the Middle East, said at a press briefing in Beijing today. “That’s the source of our new concern: What are the long-term implications of the continuing economic stress in Europe on China?”