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Fitch could stabilise Kenya's rating if election re-run goes smoothly

Fitch currently rates Kenya as B+ with a negative outlook. Photo: Reuters 

Fitch Ratings’ negative outlook on Kenya’s sovereign debt could be withdrawn if a re-run presidential election goes “relatively” smoothly and debt to GDP levels fall, Fitch said on Thursday.

Fitch currently rates Kenya as B+ with a negative outlook, and this has not been altered since the decision by the Supreme Court to nullify the presidential election, citing irregularities.

A new election has been tentatively scheduled for Oct. 17. It means voters will again have to choose between President Uhuru Kenyatta, 55, and veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga, 72.

“If the second election goes relatively smoothly and ... if they achieve a decline in their debt to GDP levels it could lead to a withdrawal of the negative outlook,” said Jan Friederich, a Fitch analyst for the Middle East and Africa.

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