Apr 7, 1:20 PM EDT

Moody's raises Egypt's rating, says growth should accelerate if political stability continues

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CAIRO (AP) -- Moody's Investor Service has upgraded Egypt's credit rating, saying macroeconomic performance has improved and external vulnerabilities have been reduced.

In a statement, it ranked Egypt at B3 on its scale - speculative and subject to high credit risk - with a stable outlook, an improvement from its previous classification of Caa1.

Moody's says it expects economic growth to accelerate to an annual 4.5 percent for the fiscal year that ends in June, before rising to 5 to 6 percent over the coming four years, assuming political stability continues.

Years of political upheaval and violence following the 2011 ouster of longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak have battered Egypt's economy, although billions of dollars in aid from Gulf allies have bolstered it, and foreign investment and vital tourism revenue have begun to recover.

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