Fitch: Braskem's Ratings Unaffected by Tax Agreement

martes 2 de diciembre de 2014 16:47 GYT

(The following statement was released by the rating agency) RIO DE JANEIRO, December 02 (Fitch) Braskem S.A.'s (Braskem) ratings are not likely to be affected by the settlement agreement with the National Treasury and Federal Revenue Service Debt Installment Program (Refis), according to Fitch Ratings. The total debt due is around BRL1 billion and was previously included in Fitch's leverage calculations. Under the settlement agreement, the company will pay 30% of this amount with cash on hand. The balance 70% will be paid through income tax and social contribution on net income credits, which will be a non-cash event. Braskem's current ratings and Stable Outlook already reflect Fitch's expectation that the company should be successful on its strategy to reduce leverage. On a pro-forma-basis, following this tax settlement, Braskem's net leverage ratio, measured as net debt to EBITDA, in accordance with Fitch's calculations, should decline to 3.1x from 3.3x as of 30 Sep. 2014. At this period, Braskem's total debt was BRL21.6 billion, including BRL1 billion of Refis, and cash and marketable securities of BRL3.8 billion. Fitch expects the deleveraging trend to continue. The expected improvement in operating cash flow during 2015 coupled with lower capex should drive Braskem's free cash flow generation to the positive range and allow for debt reduction. Braskem's equity investments in the competitive Mexico's XXI Ethylene Project, which approximately amounted to BRL2.0billion up to September 2014, have also pressured the company's credit profile over the last two years. For 2014, Fitch projects Braskem's leverage to reach about 2.8x, a decline from 3.3x during 2013 and 4.5x in 2012. Leverage should then decline to below 2.5x in 2015. Fitch currently rates Braskem as follows: Braskem S.A. --Long-term foreign currency IDR at 'BBB-'; --Long-term local currency IDR at 'BBB-'; --Long-term national rating at 'AA+(bra)'; --Unsecured senior notes due 2017 at 'BBB-'. Braskem International Ltd --Unsecured senior notes due in 2015 at 'BBB-'. Braskem Finance Limited --Unsecured senior notes due 2018, 2020, 2021, 2022 & 2024 at 'BBB-'; --Unsecured senior perpetual bonds at 'BBB-'. Braskem America Finance Company --Unsecured senior notes due 2041 at 'BBB-'. Contact: Primary Analyst Debora Jalles Director +55-21-4503-2629 Fitch Ratings Brasil Ltda., Praca XV de Novembro, 20, Centro - Rio de Janeiro - RJ Secondary Analyst Lucas Aristizabal Senior Director +1-312-368-3260 Committee Chairperson Ricardo Carvalho Senior Director +55-11-4504-2607 Media Relations: Jaqueline Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Tel: +55 21 4503 2623, Email:; Elizabeth Fogerty, New York, Tel: +1 (212) 908 0526, Email: Additional information is available at '' ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: here. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE 'WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM'. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.