Independent global ratings agency, Moody’s, has reaffirmed its confidence in South Australia’s economy, recognising our ‘resilient and diverse’ economy as critical in helping cushion the blow of COVID-19.
In its latest credit update, Moody’s – which has maintained the state’s Aa1 stable rating – acknowledged there would be some budget impact as a result of the Government’s significant stimulus package to support local jobs and SA businesses impacted by the pandemic, but said the state’s increasing debt burden remained manageable.
“While the state’s debt burden is rising due to current revenue and expenditure pressures, it will remain below its domestic peers and continues to be supported by a high level of liquid financial assets,” it said.
Moody’s also credited the Marshall Government’s handling of the pandemic as a key factor in minimising the fiscal impacts of COVID-19, particularly compared with other states.
“… South Australia’s reasonably well diversified tax base, early and successful implementation of border controls and South Australia’s small population have reduced the extent of the fiscal impacts of coronavirus relative to its domestic peers.”
Treasurer Rob Lucas welcomed the continued independent endorsement of the Government’s strong and sustainable financial management, particularly during the greatest economic challenge of our time.
“This is welcome validation by an independent global ratings agency of the Government’s commitment to strong economic management, while we do everything in our power to sustain local jobs and businesses during the COVID-19 global pandemic,” said Mr Lucas.
“Our $1 billion economic stimulus package – together with Federal Government initiatives, including the extended JobKeeper wage subsidy – will ensure as many South Australians as possible stay in jobs while local businesses keep their lights on and their doors open.”