The ratings agency Moody’s says it is changed its outlook on Qatar’s economy to negative, largely due to the ongoing diplomatic dispute now engulfing the tiny, energy-rich nation.
Moody’s said in a statement early Wednesday that “the likelihood of a prolonged period of uncertainty extending into 2018 has increased and a quick resolution of the dispute is unlikely over the next few months.”
Moody’s says that “carries the risk that Qatar’s sovereign credit fundamentals could be negatively affected.”
So far, Moody’s says Qatar’s exports of natural gas have yet to be affected. Those exports make the small country’s citizens have the biggest per capita incomes in the world.
Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates cut diplomatic ties to Qatar last month in large part over their allegations that it supports extremist groups. Qatar denies backing extremists.
They later issued a 13-point list of demands to Qatar to end the standoff. Qatar submitted a written response to mediator Kuwait on Monday.
Energy-rich Qatar hosts some 10,000 American troops at its sprawling Al-Udeid Air Base.