Paris – After upgrading many of its country ratings in 2010,Coface today announced 10 country rating downgrades, includingthose for Japan and several countries in the Middle East/NorthAfrica region.

Coface has revised downwards its world growth forecast for 2011from 3.4% to 3.2%, as a result of recent events in Japan, NorthAfrica and the Middle East. Despite this downturn, the economicenvironment remains positive.

Economic shockwaves in Japan
Due to therecent spate of disasters in Japan, Coface hasplaced the country's A1 rating on negative watch. Japan's 2011growth forecast has been revised downwards from 1.5% to 0.3%, aftera 3.9% rebound in 2010.

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