Mexico will take longest in Latin America to recover from coronavirus-S&P

Latin America

(Corrects to clarify that Mexico will see below-average growth in Latin America, not to take the longest to recover)

MEXICO CITY, March 27 (Reuters) – Mexico will join Brazil as one of the countries in Latin America that will likely see below average growth in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic, S&P Global Ratings said on Friday, a day after it cut the ratings of Mexico and national oil company Petroleos Mexicanos.

The ratings agency is the second in the past week to highlight Latin America’s second-largest economy as being vulnerable after Fitch Ratings said Pemex would be the national oil company hit hardest among regional peers.

Lisa Schineller, lead analyst for S&P’s sovereign ratings in Latin America, said that the government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador had signaled strong support for the troubled oil company.

“The government will provide extraordinary support for Pemex – with almost complete certainty,” Schineller said, adding that the ratings agency would continue to tie the Pemex rating to that of the sovereign.

Both are rated BBB since the cut from BBB+ on Thursday. (Reporting by Stefanie Eschenbacher and Abraham Gonzalez)

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