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Israel’s finance minister defends economy outlook after Moody’s downgrade

Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich brushed off Moody’s downgrade of Israel’s credit ratings for the first time.

The global credit rating agency, on Friday night, lowered Israel’s credit ratings to A2 from A1 with a “negative” outlook, citing the prolonged war with Hamas and the toll it is taking on the country’s finances.

Smotrich wrote on Facebook that “the Israeli economy is strong by all measures and capable of supporting all the war efforts until victory, and returning to an accelerated growth path.”

He added that “Moody’s announcement is lacking serious economic arguments and is a political manifesto based on a pessimistic and unfounded geopolitical worldview.”

On Friday night, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that “Israel’s economy is solid. The downgrade is not related to the economy, but entirely because we are at war. The rating will go back up as soon as we win the war, and we will win.” ■

Famagusta Gazette