Press Release

DBRS Morningstar Confirms Muskrat Falls/Labrador Transmission Assets Funding Trust and Labrador-Island Link Funding Trust at AAA, Stable Trends

Project Finance
September 28, 2023

DBRS Limited (DBRS Morningstar) confirmed the ratings of the 2013, 2017, and 2022 Guaranteed Senior Bonds (together, the Bonds) issued by Muskrat Falls/Labrador Transmission Assets Funding Trust and Labrador-Island Link Funding Trust (together, the Issuers) at AAA with Stable trends. The credit ratings are based on three unconditional and irrevocable federal loan guarantees of substantially similar nature provided by the Government of Canada (Canada or the Guarantor): the 2013 Federal Loan Guarantee (FLG1), the 2017 Federal Loan Guarantee (FLG2), and the 2022 Federal Loan Guarantee (FLG3; together with FLG1 and FLG2, the Guarantee). This rating action follows DBRS Morningstar’s recent confirmation of Canada’s sovereign rating at AAA with a Stable trend (see DBRS Morningstar’s related press release dated September 8, 2023).

DBRS Morningstar notes the Guarantee has met its criteria for a flow-through of Canada’s sovereign rating to the Bonds. The Guarantee constitutes an irrevocable, unconditional, absolute, and continuing obligation of Canada. There is no requirement to exhaust recourse against the Issuers before bondholders are entitled to the payment from Canada; all defences are waived by the government and subrogation rights are postponed as long as the guaranteed obligations are still outstanding; and no amendment of the Guarantee is permitted, except by agreement with the Indenture Trustee. Furthermore, release of the Guarantor is permitted only when all its obligations are fully repaid. DBRS Morningstar expects the Bonds’ ratings will continue to move in tandem with Canada’s sovereign rating, irrespective of the performance of the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric generating facility and the associated transmission links (the Project). Any rating upgrade or downgrade is expected to follow DBRS Morningstar’s similar rating action on Canada.

The Issuers were created as single-purpose financing trusts to facilitate the financing of the Project, an 824-megawatt hydroelectric power-generating facility, and the development of associated transmission links in the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador (rated "A" with a Stable trend by DBRS Morningstar). The Issuers’ sole business is to issue the Bonds and on-lend proceeds to the Project via back-to-back loans. The Issuers sized the Bonds to cover interest payment during construction. Since November 2021, all four generating units have been in operation. In April 2023, the commissioning of the Labrador-Island Link was finalized after a long delay as General Electric managed to fix the technical issue surrounding the bipole software. The construction of the Project is now considered complete. The in-service cost (including financing cost and reserves) of $13.5 billion was finalized in June 2023.


Rating actions on Canada are likely to have an impact on this rating. ESG factors that have a significant or relevant effect on the credit analysis of Canada are discussed separately at

There were no Environmental/Social/Governance factors that had a significant or relevant effect on the credit analysis.

A description of how DBRS Morningstar considers ESG factors within the DBRS Morningstar analytical framework can be found in the DBRS Morningstar Criteria: Approach to Environmental, Social, and Governance Risk Factors in Credit Ratings at (July 4, 2023).

All figures are in Canadian dollars unless otherwise noted.

DBRS Morningstar applied the following principal methodology:
-- DBRS Morningstar Global Criteria: Guarantees and Other Forms of Support (March 28, 2023) -

The credit rating methodologies used in the analysis of this transaction can be found at:

A description of how DBRS Morningstar analyzes corporate finance transactions and how the methodologies are collectively applied can be found at:

The related regulatory disclosures pursuant to the National Instrument 25-101 Designated Rating Organizations are hereby incorporated by reference and can be found by clicking on the link under Related Documents or by contacting us at [email protected].

The credit rating was initiated at the request of the rated entity.

The rated entity or its related entities did participate in the credit rating process for this credit rating action.

DBRS Morningstar had access to the accounts, management and other relevant internal documents of the rated entity or its related entities in connection with this credit rating action.

This is a solicited credit rating.

The conditions that lead to the assignment of a Negative or Positive trend are generally resolved within a 12-month period. DBRS Morningstar trends and credit ratings are under regular surveillance.

The full report providing additional analytical detail is available by clicking on the link under Related Documents below or by contacting us at [email protected].

Information regarding DBRS Morningstar credit ratings, including definitions, policies, and methodologies, is available on or contact us at [email protected].

DBRS Limited
DBRS Tower, 181 University Avenue, Suite 700
Toronto, ON M5H 3M7 Canada
Tel. +1 416 593-5577