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Banque Centrale Populaires's Ratings affirmed with a negative outlook assigned to the Financial Strength Rating

Capital Intelligence (CI), the international credit rating agency, today announced that it has affirmed the Foreign Currency ratings of Morocco’s Banque Centrale Populaire at bbb- (Long-term) and a3 (Short-term), which are at the sovereign ceiling for Morocco, and the Financial Strength rating at bbb-.

The Support rating was maintained at 2. The Outlook for the Financial Strength rating is however
placed on Negative. This action reflects possible upward pressure on Banque Centrale Populaire’s
(BCP) non-performing loans on the back of slight tightening in the Moroccan economy. Economic
growth for Morocco is expected to be a lower 4% in 2010 with the negative impact due to weaker export
markets, particularly that of the Eurozone area.

BCP displays a very high level of liquid assets, the result of interbank deposits accepted from the
regional banks which are largely channelled into Moroccan government securities, cash and deposits
with Bank Al-Maghrib. Profitability improved in 2009, aided by both non-interest and interest income,
the latter driven by growth in BCP’s loan book. The high rate of loan growth, albeit from a small base,
will need to be monitored as the portfolio matures through the economic cycle. BCP’s capital position
has improved recently through increased Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital and this supports the overall position.
Group assets amounted to MAD208 billion at end 2009 with the Group overall holding a dominant
market position in customer deposits. On a bank-only basis BCP is Morocco’s third largest bank.

BCP is part of Morocco’s Groupe Banque Populaire. The major part of the Group consists of 11
member banks, or Banques Populaires Regionales. BCP is responsible for executing policy and
conducting business on behalf of the Banques Populaires Regionales. The Group has over three
million customers, mainly connected to the regional co-operative banks. The Bank was created by law
in 1961 to finance the activities of Morocco’s SMEs. It is 45% owned by the State of Morocco, and the
11 regional co-operative banks own 22%. The state exercises management control. BCP is the
Group’s principal legal and operating entity, acting as the regional banks’ legal representative, and
conducting much of their asset liability activities. The Group also holds investments in numerous
companies, mostly in the financial services field, both in Morocco and abroad.

The Bank is the flagship government-controlled financial institution in Morocco. BCP’s loan portfolio,
which is mainly to corporates, is small but a growing portion of its assets. Groupe Banque Populaire
dominates the customer-deposit market because of its network of regional cooperative banks, an
associated substantial branch number, and its historic edge in collecting deposits from Moroccans
residing abroad.


Mercredi 26 Mai 2010

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