The international rating agency Standard & Poor's has downgraded the ratings of the major oil-producing states.
S&P now assumes an average Brent oil price of $40 per barrel in 2016 and $50 per barrel in 2018. Earlier, in the autumn 2015, the agency expected Brent oil prices to average $55 per barrel in 2016 and $70 per barrel in 2018.
S&P has cut its sovereign credit rating for Saudi Arabia by two levels to 'A-', Oman's rating to 'BBB-', Bahrain's rating to 'BB'.
The long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit rating of Kazakhstan was lowered to 'BBB-' from 'BBB'.
Brazil's rating dropped to 'BB' from 'BB+'. The economic situation in the country is deteriorating for several reasons, Interfax reports.
The agency's analysts believe that the agreement between Russia, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Venezuela to freeze oil production at the January level won't affect price forecasts.