(The following statement was released by the rating agency)
Dec 10 -
-- On Oct. 17, 2012, we placed our ratings on South African gold miner AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. (AngloGold) on CreditWatch negative following increased country risk in South Africa.
-- Over the medium term, we believe that AngloGold's several projects under development should reduce the company's exposure to South Africa and slow down the ongoing increase in the unit cash cost.
-- We are therefore removing our corporate credit and issue ratings on AngloGold from CreditWatch negative and affirming them.
-- The negative outlook reflects potential rating downside over the next 12-18 months if the operating environment in South Africa worsens, or if AngloGold does not improve its geographic foot print and unit cash cost.
On Dec. 10, 2012, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services removed from CreditWatch with negative implications its 'BBB-' long-term corporate credit rating, 'zaAA-/zaA-1' long- and short-term South Africa national scale ratings, and 'BBB-' senior unsecured debt rating on South African gold miner AngloGold Ashanti Ltd.(AngloGold). We had placed the ratings on CreditWatch on Oct. 17, 2012.
At the same time, we affirmed all of our ratings on AngloGold. The outlook is negative.