September 4, 2015 / 6:18 PM / 2 years ago

UPDATE 1-South African finance watchdog de-registers Fitch's local affiliate

(Adds FSB comment)

JOHANNESBURG, Sept 4 (Reuters) - South Africa’s financial watchdog said on Friday it had cancelled the registration of Fitch Rating’s South African affiliate following a request from the company.

The Financial Services Board (FSB) said the ratings issued by Fitch Southern Africa would stay valid for four months.

“The cancellation of the registration means that Fitch Southern Africa, or any other Fitch office or entity, will no longer issue credit ratings for regulatory purposes in South Africa,” the FSB said in a statement.

Fitch Southern Africa said in a statement it was discussing with the FSB how best to remain transparent and provide credit opinions while respecting South African legislation.

Tembisa Marele, a spokeswoman for the FSB, said she was not aware of any fallout between Fitch and the South African government.

South Africa’s Finance Ministry declined immediate comment.

In June, Fitch Ratings cut its 2015 and 2016 forecasts for Africa’s most advanced economy due to energy supply constraints and affirmed its BBB rating with a negative outlook.

Fitch was not immediately available for comment. (Reporting by Zandi Shabalala; Editing by Ruth Pitchford and John Stonestreet)

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