OJSC PhosAgro (PHOR)
Fitch Affirms PhosAgro's Investment-Grade Rating at BBB- with a Stable Outlook
Moscow - PhosAgro (Moscow Exchange, LSE: PHOR), one of the world's leading vertically integrated phosphate-based fertilizer producers, announces that the Fitch Ratings has affirmed the Company's long-term foreign- and local-currency issuer default ratings at BBB- with a stable outlook.
Fitch's rating reflects PhosAgro's global cost leadership, significant market presence in phosphates and solid financial profile.
In its report, Fitch said it expects PhosAgro's resilience to further improve. The report mentions the EU's ban on imports of phosphate-based fertilizers with cadmium content in excess of 60 mg / kg of P2O5, beginning in 2022 - with a subsequent review of the limit to take place by 2026. The agency says these restrictions support the prospects for PhosAgro's exports to the EU given that the Company's mineral fertilizers do not contain hazardous concentrations of heavy metals or other toxic substances.
PhosAgro CEO Andrey Guryev said: "Fitch's affirmation of PhosAgro's rating is proof of the effectiveness and flexibility of our business model, which has enabled PhosAgro to maintain high credit ratings even while implementing a large-scale investment programme as part of the 2025 strategy. Of particular importance to us is the fact that Fitch has recognised our prospects in the EU market due to the fact that our products do not contain hazardous concentrations of harmful substances and comply with even the most stringent restrictions on the content of harmful impurities such as cadmium."
PhosAgro currently has three investment-grade credit ratings:
PhosAgro has also received several other high ratings from leading sustainability agencies. In May 2021, MSCI ESG Research raised the Company's rating from BBB to A, which underlines PhosAgro's leading position among Russian companies and among global producers of mineral fertilizers. In 2020, Sustainalytics upgraded PhosAgro's ESG rating from 43.5 to 26.9, which is one of the best ESG risk management ratings in the Russian market. CDP, a respected research firm in the area of climate responsibility metrics, upgraded PhosAgro's rating from C to B-. In a rating by Institutional Investor, one of the world's leading financial publications, PhosAgro was ranked first in six categories, including Environmental, Social and Management Responsibility Metrics.
PhosAgro (www.phosagro.com) is one of the world's leading vertically integrated phosphate-based fertilizer producers in terms of production volumes of phosphate-based fertilizers and high-grade phosphate rock with a P2O5 content of 39% and higher. PhosAgro's environmentally friendly fertilizers stand out for their high efficiency, and they do not lead to the contamination of soils with heavy metals.
The Company is the largest phosphate-based fertilizer producer in Europe (by total combined capacity for DAP/MAP/NP/NPK/NPS), the largest producer of high-grade phosphate rock with a P2O5 content of 39%, a top-three producer of MAP/DAP globally, one of the leading producers of feed phosphates (MCP) in Europe, and the only producer in Russia, and Russia's only producer of nepheline concentrate (according to the RAFP).
PhosAgro's main products include phosphate rock, more than 50 grades of fertilizers, feed phosphates, ammonia, and sodium tripolyphosphate, which are used by customers in 102 countries spanning all of the world's inhabited continents. The Company's priority markets outside of Russia and the CIS are Latin America, Europe and Asia.
PhosAgro's shares are traded on the Moscow Exchange, and global depositary receipts (GDRs) for shares trade on the London Stock Exchange (under the ticker PHOR). Since 1 June 2016, the Company's GDRs have been included in the MSCI Russia and MSCI Emerging Markets indexes.
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