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10th April 2014

Bandar Seri Begawan, 10 April 2014 –. In another "first" in Brunei, leading local bank, Baiduri Bank yesterday became the first in the banking industry to be rated by an international rating agency when Baiduri Bank received an impressive rating of "BBB+/A-2" from Standard & Poor’s.

In a Standards and Poor’s release published in Bloomberg on 9th April 2014, it described Baiduri Bank Berhad as having a "strong" business position, "adequate" capital and earnings, "moderate" risk position, "average" funding and "strong" liquidity.

“We are assigning our 'BBB+' long-term and 'A-2' short-term issuer credit ratings to the Brunei-based bank. We are also assigning our 'axA+' long-term and 'axA-1' short-term ASEAN regional scale to Baiduri. The stable outlook reflects our view that the bank will maintain its high systemic importance in Brunei and its financial profile will remain steady over the next 12-18 months”, the release said.

"The rating on Baiduri Bank reflects the bank’s strong business position, adequate capital and earnings, moderate risk position, average funding and strong liquidity as our criteria defined those terms. The bank’s stand-alone credit profile (SACP) is 'bb+'. The rating on Baiduri is three notches above the SACP because we assess that there is a "high" likelihood that the government would provide timely and sufficient extraordinary support to Baiduri in the event of financial distress. Our view is based on the bank’s “high systemic importance", given its size in Brunei, and our assessment of the government as "highly supportive", said Standard & Poor's credit analyst, Amit Pandey.

Baiduri's liquidity ratios are stronger than several global peer's, with a ratio of broad liquid assets to short-term wholesale funding of 70x as of end-December 2013.

"Our stable outlook on Baiduri reflects our expectation that the bank will maintain its high systemic importance in Brunei and its financial profile will remain steady over the next 12-18 months," said Mr Pandey.

Commenting on the S&P ranking, CEO of Baiduri Bank, Mr Pierre Imhof said, "Baiduri Bank is very proud to receive this BBB+ ranking by Standard and Poor's. This highlights the Bank’s continued commitment to the country and its customers and has brought the Bank to the same level as some of its regional piers, if not better".

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