This paper re-examines the dependence structure between uncertainty in oil prices and sovereign credit risk of oil exporters. To address this issue, we employ a copula approach that allows us to capture asymmetric and nonlinear dependence structures. Empirical analyses involve daily data of the 5-year sovereign credit default swaps spreads and the crude oil implied volatility from January 2010 to May 2019, covering a sample of ten oil-exporting countries. Except for Brazil and Venezuela, our results provide evidence of significant positive and upper tail dependence in the relationship between oil market uncertainty and oil exporters’ sovereign risk. Overall, our findings highlight that high uncertainty in oil prices coincides with large-scale increases in the sovereign credit risk of oil-exporting countries, supporting the hypothesis that investors, exposed to economic losses from risk events in oil exporters, are all the more pessimistic that prevails high uncertainty about future oil prices. Our findings have implications for oil exporter’ policymakers as well as investors.