New Delhi, Nov 24: International rating agency Standard and Poor’s on Friday kept the growth outlook for India ‘stable’ and rated the world’s third-largest economy ‘BBB-‘ in its latest report. The current rating comes a shock to India after Moody’s, another rating agency, upgraded rankings after 13 years. Although the agency appreciated the reforms of the centre led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it decided to keep its ratings lowest on its table. It also expected to grow at a robust speed during 2018-2020.

The report said India has a  sizable fiscal deficit which remains around the expected level. “Nevertheless, sizable fiscal deficits, a high net general government debt burden, and low per capita income detract from the sovereign’s credit profile,” S & P Global added.

Moody’s Investors Service had raised India’s sovereign rating for the first time in over 13 years, saying that growth prospects have improved with continued economic and institutional reforms. The US-based agency upped India’s rating to Baa2 from Baa3, changing outlook to ‘stable’ from ‘positive’, and said that reforms will help stabilise rising levels of debt.

Terming the ratings as ‘belated recognition’, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the reform agenda will continue with emphasis on higher spending on infrastructure and in rural areas.”We welcome (the upgrade) and believe that it is a belated recognition of all the positive steps taken in India in the last few years which have contributed to the strengthening of the Indian economy,” Jaitley said