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    Fitch Reaffirms Iraq at 'B-' With Negative Outlook

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    The Fitch ratings agency gave Iraq negative outlook due to sectarian and ethnic tensions as prevailing risk factors in Iraq even in the presence of military gains against the Daesh.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Fitch ratings agency has reaffirmed Iraq's Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at "B-" with a negative outlook, according to the press release published on Tuesday.

    The agency sees sectarian and ethnic tensions as prevailing risk factors in Iraq even in the presence of military gains against the Islamic State (ISIL or Daesh). The bulk of national oil industry facilities are located away from areas of insecurity but low commodity prices, forecast by Fitch at $42 per barrel in 2016, $45 in 2017 and $55 in 2018, will continue to deteriorate public finance.

    "Commodity dependence is among the highest of all Fitch-rated sovereigns. Oil accounts for more than 50% of GDP and over 90% of fiscal and current external receipts," the press release read.

    The Iraqi economy was badly hurt by plunging global oil prices and exhausting struggle against the Islamic State (IS) terror group, making Fitch downgrade its long-term rating in March to "B-" with a negative outlook.

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