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Germany-based potash and salt producer ratings raised to BBB+

September 08/2011

(ICIS) -- Standard & Poors (S&P) has raised its long-term corporate credit rating and senior unsecured debt rating for Germany-based potash and salt producer Kali and Salz (K+S) to BBB+ from BBB, the ratings agency said on Thursday. S&P said K+S has posted strong credit metrics since 30 June 2010 and expects them to continue to do so in the second half of 2011 and into 2012.

S&P anticipates that K+Ss earnings will remain volatile because it considers them to be highly sensitive to potash prices and volumes, it added.

However, S&P credit analyst Oliver Kroemker gave K+S a stable outlook because it reflects our view that strong demand for potash and other fertilizers, and the resulting high prices for them, should enable K+S to increase its profitability in 2011.

In August, K+S announced that its adjusted second-quarter earnings from continued operations had risen by 47.6% year on year to EUR 126.8m (USD 178.6m), while its revenues for the second quarter rose by 10.7% to EUR 1.05bn year on year, on the back of strong demand in its fertilizer business.

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