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S&P upgrades Eni's long-term credit rating

S&P upgrades Eni's long-term credit rating

Standard & Poor’s has raised Eni’s long-term credit rating from 'BBB+' to ‘A-’ with Stable outlook after the Italian oil and gas giant Eni cut its debt and cash flow generation was aided by "supportive" oil prices, the US rating agency said on Thursday.

S&P also raised its ratings on Eni's senior unsecured debt to 'A-and confirmed its 'A-2' short-term credit rating for Eni.

"We believe the company's use of free cash flow as well as sale proceeds - including the sale of a 25 percent interest in Mozambique Area 4 to ExxonMobil for about 2.8 billion dollars - shows its commitment to reducing debt and leverage," S&P stated.

Eni chief executive Claudio Descalzi welcomed the upgrade.

“I’m particularly pleased with this result, which highlights the work put into boosting our upstream portfolio, restructuring the mid-downstream businesses and strengthening our financial position," he said in a statement announcing the S&P upgrade.

"These results, achieved in spite of the unfavourable market cycle of recent years, have allowed us to maintain a solid business profile and regain an 'A' rating as soon as the market started to show signs of greater stability again,” the statement concluded.