ECA Watch Newsletter

What's New December 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today!

Questions? Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • Inside EDC one of Canada's most secretive agencies
  • Banks criticised for funding coal deals despite Paris agreement
  • Pipeline developer sues social movements
  • The UK arms trade with repressive regimes has no moral or economic sense
  • Turkey to Acquire Four Russian S-400 Missile Divisions with ECA support
  • Lenders jostle for mega PNG LNG financing deal
  • Africa – a new frontier for Floating LNG projects
  • Senate Panel Rejects Trump's Nominee to Lead Export-Import Bank
  • Former Ex-Im Bank Director under investigation for undisclosed foreign agent contract
  • Indonesia - Dirty man of Asia deepens addiction to coal
  • UKEF lines up new delegated supply chain finance (SCF) guarantees
  • An African corridor to prosperity [and coal fired global warming!]
  • Sinopec Signs $1b Iranian Abadan Refinery Expansion Deal
  • Kuwait Seals US$6.245bn ECA-Backed Corporate Transaction

Inside EDC one of Canada's most secretive agencies

(The Walrus, Toronto, 19 December 2017) Export Development Canada lends foreign buyers billions of taxpayer dollars. Critics say it's knowingly banking some of the world's worst regimes.  EDC has perfected the art of lending billions of taxpayer dollars to scandal-ridden foreign buyers. In May 2017, a trove of hundreds of thousands of emails was leaked to the press from an organization belonging to the Gupta family of South Africa. In a lengthy email thread strung out over the course of 2014, it was revealed that Bombardier had negotiated a C$52 million sale of a luxury jet to a Gupta subsidiary, with US$41 million of the jet’s financing provided directly to the Guptas by Export Development Canada, a Canadian Crown corporation. The Guptas are not EDC’s only controversial clients. The agency’s client list is studded with some of the most ­scandal-ridden multinationals on the planet including Kinross Gold whose West ­African mining operations were, as of 2016, under investigation by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission for bribery and corruption. [ECA-Watch member Above Ground has questioned EDC financing for controversial projects such as Omai Gold Mines in Guyana and Petrobas in Brazil, with EDC refusing to comment on the possible illegal or inappropriate use of Canadian tax dollars. Above Ground's 11 December 2017 report on Kinross Gold shows that, among other harms, Kinross’ dramatic expansion of the mine displaced the residents of traditional communities formed over a century ago by former African slaves who have land rights under Brazilian law. The legal process to formalize their collective title was well underway when Kinross announced its expansion plan and Export Development Canada provided financing, forcing them off their land. The report also raises concern about environmental oversight of the mine, which is located within 500 metres of neighbourhoods where hundreds of families live, as well as safety measures to keep people from entering the mine site.]  EDC activities are protected by disclosure protocols that are entirely opaque, with the result that few in ­Canada - including the Minister presiding over it - seem to know the full details about what the agency does, who it finances, and why. With EDC’s mandate up for review in 2018, it seems like a good time to examine the considerable reputational risks the agency often takes. [As well as its compliance with its own international, WTO and OECD agreed due diligence requirements on human rights, environmental standards and corruption.] On December 21, 2017, 2 days after this article was published online, EDC announced that it was suddenly terminating its $41 million loan to the Guptas for the purchase of a luxury Bombardier jet.

https://thewalrus.ca/inside-one-of-canadas-most-secretive-agencies/


Banks criticised for funding coal deals despite Paris agreement

(ECA Watch, Ottawa, 31 December 2017) At the One Planet Summit in Paris in December 2017 a number of NGO, environmental and social movement organizations released briefings and research reports highlighting fossil fuel projects that are being funded by multilateral and national development banks and export credit agencies. The Big Shift global campaign released a briefing titled Dirty Dozen (pdf); complementary reports, ‘Banks vs. the Paris Agreement’ and ‘Investors vs. the Paris Agreement’ (pdf) were launched by Rainforest Action Network, BankTrack, Urgewald, Friends of the Earth France, and Re:Common at the Climate Finance Day in Paris; and the Natural Resource Defense Council released Power Shift: International Coal vs. Renewable Energy Finance.




Pipeline developer sues social movements

(Kallanish Energy News, Greensburg, 18 December 2017) Dakota Access Pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) and Florida-based environmental publication Earth First Journal are arguing in federal court whether something called a “social movement” can be sued. ETP in August filed a lawsuit against enviro-groups Earth First, Greenpeace and BankTrack, alleging they issued false and misleading information about the $3.8 billion pipeline, to move North Dakota crude to Patoka, Ill., interfered with construction, and damaged the company's reputation and finances through illegal acts. The company's lawsuit, filed in federal court in North Dakota, seeks damages that could approach $1 billion, The Associated Press reported.

https://www.kallanishenergy.com/2017/12/18/etp-publication-argue-over-social-mov...


The UK arms trade with repressive regimes has no moral or economic sense

(The Guardian, London, 20 December 2017) As the spectre of Brexit emerges, so do the first meaningful signs of the Tory vision of “building a global Britain”. The Department for International Trade, set up by Theresa May to put some flesh on the bones of her slogan, has prioritised arms sales for Britain’s post-Brexit industrial policy. The DIT, which licences Britain’s exports guns, planes and bombs, has overseen a sharp spike in sales to repressive regimes, many of which it has identified as “priority markets”. The biggest of these is Saudi Arabia, which is using our arms to bomb into famine its political enemies in Yemen. Our arms export control regime clearly states that it is illegal for the government to licence weapons to nations that oppress their own people or violate international humanitarian law. When buyers cannot afford our weapons, the government subsidises loans for them through export credit guarantees; UK Export Finance, which is supposed to support all British exports, says 50% of the support it provides (in the form of loans or guarantees) was given to defence exports.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/dec/20/uk-arms-trade-no-moral-or-...


Turkey to Acquire Four Russian S-400 Missile Divisions with ECA support

(Prensa Latina, Moscow, 28 December 2017) Turkey will acquire, for 2.5 billion dollars, four divisions of the modern Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile divisions, which will be delivered in 2020. The finance ministries of Turkey and Russia have concluded negotiations for the granting of an export credit to Ankara, Chemezov head of the Russian state conglomerate Rostec said. Turkey will pay an advance equivalent to 45% of the total and the Russian side will grant an export credit that will cover the other 55% of the contract. Ankara [a NATO member] received strong criticism and even threats from the United States for its decision to acquire the Russian arms. In other Russian ECA news, four Iranian banks have signed an "unlimited finance deal" with the Eximbank of Russia for public and private sector approved projects using Russian technical and engineering services.

http://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=22657&SEO=turkey-to-acquire-four-russ...


Lenders jostle for mega PNG LNG financing deal

(Australian Financial Review, Sydney, 5 December 2017) Key project debt lenders have been giving their passports and travel insurers a workout as they troop up to Papua New Guinea to get to grips with what could be the region's biggest financing since the record US$20 billion deal for Ichthys LNG. While the final configuration of the next stage of LNG expansion in PNG is yet to be settled, those behind the circa US$17 billion project - primarily ExxonMobil, Total and Oil Search - are already well advanced. In considering funding export credit agencies are again expected to be well in evidence, while the backing of two oil majors and the sheer size of the project count in favour of commercial lender interest.

http://www.afr.com/street-talk/local-lenders-jostle-for-mega-png-financing-deal-...


Africa – a new frontier for Floating LNG projects

(LNG Worldshipping News, London, 4 December 2017)) Floating LNG (FLNG) is opening new offshore gas basins for LNG development in Africa. The ownership structure of Africa’s new LNG production and the willingness of international oil companies to deploy new technologies will drive the commoditisation of LNG and cement its growing role as such in the global trading of energy. Uniquely, FLNG vessels will provide the first liquefaction plants in Mozambique and Cameroon and the technology is also expected to lead an expansion of capacity in Equatorial Guinea, Senegal and Mauritania. Italy’s Eni and its partners took a final investment decision on the 3.4M tonnes a year (mta) Coral FLNG scheme off Mozambique in June 2017. The project will be the first of this type to have as much as 60% of its cost funded on a project-finance basis, backed by 15 international banks and guaranteed by five export credit agencies. The financing was provided in the form of covered loans from five export credit agencies (Italy's Sace, China's Sinosure, Japan's Ksure, South Korea's Kexim, and Portugal's BPI) and two direct loans (one provided by Kexim, the other by an unnamed 'commercial bank').

http://www.lngworldshipping.com/news/view,africa-a-new-frontier-for-flng_49905.h...


Senate Panel Rejects Trump's Nominee to Lead Export-Import Bank

(New York Times, Washington, 19 December 2017) Two Republican senators broke with their party to block President Trump’s nominee to lead the Export-Import Bank, a setback for the White House that reflects deep divisions in the Republican Party over the role that the government should play in steering the United States economy toward prosperity. The nominee, Scott Garrett, a former representative and a Republican from New Jersey who had wanted to see the government’s export credit agency shuttered, was rejected by the Senate Banking Committee in a 13-to-10 vote. Since 2015, the agency has been hobbled by a lack of personnel necessary to approve projects over $10 million, formerly the bulk of the agency’s work. An estimated $42.2 billion worth of deals are stuck in the pipeline waiting for approval, which could support an estimated 250,000 American jobs, a spokeswoman for the Export-Import Bank said. Some of the biggest Ex-Im customers are General Electric, Boeing and Caterpillar, Some senators and the Trump administration have threatened to pull the other board nominees, leaving the bank without a quorum and barred from financing deals over $10 million and Boeing to fend for itself. However, in 2017 the Aircraft Finance Insurance Consortium has supported more than $1 billion of new airplane deliveries and Boeing has 661 firm orders for 2018, in addition to 6,600 backorders. Meanwhile it has been said that Boeing is upset that Garrett was getting help throughout the nomination process from Dan Murphy, a lobbyist for a high-powered Washington firm that counts Airbus among its clients.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/19/us/politics/republicans-senate-export-import-...


Former Ex-Im Bank Director under investigation for undisclosed foreign agent contract

(Newsweek, Washington, 20 June 2017) Federal investigators probing the lobbying work of ousted national security adviser Michael Flynn are focused in part on the role of Bijan Kian, Flynn’s former business partner, according to a person interviewed by the FBI. In private conversations with potential clients, Kian portrayed himself as a rainmaker for Flynn, tapping into connections cultivated during a five-year tenure as a director at the U.S. Export-Import Bank, according to one person who worked with the firm. Inovo, a Netherlands-based company controlled by Turkish businessman Ekim Alptekin, hired Flynn Intel Group to research Fethullah Gulen’s activities in the United States, which he suspected were “poisoning” relations between the United States and Turkey. Like Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan, Alptekin blamed the coup on followers of Gulen. Kian played a central role in securing and overseeing the Inovo contract, two people with knowledge of that project said. The FBI has been investigating whether Flynn’s consulting firm lobbied on behalf of Turkey - after being paid $530,000 by Inovo - without making the proper disclosure under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

http://www.newsweek.com/flynn-trump-russia-investigation-turkey-bijan-kian-gulen...


Indonesia - Dirty man of Asia deepens addiction to coal

(The Nation, Bangkok, 30 December 2017) Already the world’s fifth-biggest greenhouse gas emitter,  Indonesia is leading Southeast Asia’s boom in coal-fired power. Already one of the world’s biggest carbon polluters because of deforestation, Indonesia has back-pedalled on a pledge to cap coal production. The government initially planned to reduce its coal production to 413 million tonnes this year, from 419 million tonnes in 2016. The figure was expected to fall to 406 million tonnes next year, before hovering at only 400 million from 2019. However, this year’s coal production has already reached 477 million tonnes, far outstripping last year’s 434 million tonnes. The boom is being bankrolled by foreign governments and banks, the Guardian reports. Activist group Market Forces examined 22 deals involving 13.1 gigawatts of coal-fired power in Indonesia and found that 91 per cent of the projects had the backing of foreign governments through export credit agencies or development banks. The majority of the money was coming from Japan and China, with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation involved in five deals and the Export-Import Bank of China involved in seven deals.

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/opinion/30335079


UKEF lines up new delegated supply chain finance (SCF) guarantees

(Global Trade Review, London, 7 December 2017) UK Export Finance (UKEF) has announced plans for a new invoice financing scheme for exporters in a bid to boost exports through supply chain efficiency. GTR has learned that the new scheme will allow an exporter to set up a supply chain discounting facility with its bank, through which suppliers can receive up to 95% of their payment on invoice submission. The facility will be based on an export contract and support will be based on the buyer’s creditworthiness. UKEF will provide the bank with a guarantee for up to 80% of the amount of credit provided through the facility. The finer details of the scheme, which is due to be launched next year, are still being ironed out. Earlier in the year, the export credit agency (ECA) launched the Bank Delegation scheme, which gives banks authority to issue UKEF guarantees for their customers simply by telling UKEF they are issuing the guarantee based on the banks' own due diligence. [How UKEF will ensure compliance with its own international, WTO and OECD agreed due diligence requirements on human rights, environmental standards and corruption is not clear under this delegation of responsibility to private sector banks.]

https://www.gtreview.com/news/europe/ukef-lines-up-new-scf-scheme-2/


An African corridor to prosperity [and coal fired global warming!]

(African Law & Business, London, 7 December 2017) London's Linklaters & US firm White & Case, together with local law firms, have shared the plaudits in agreeing financing of the US$4 billion Nacala Corridor rail and port project, which spans Mozambique & Malawi. It involves Brazil's Vale & Japan's Mitsui and will enable the construction, refurbishment and operation of nearly 1000 kilometres of railway line, as well as the construction and operation of a coal terminal in the port of Nacala, linking Vale’s coal project in Tete Province, in western Mozambique home to some of the world’s richest remaining coal deposits, with a deep sea port to be constructed in Nacala – the so-called Nacala Corridor, in eastern Mozambique. Banks involved in the deal, who were advised by Linklaters, included the African Development Bank (AfDB), Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC), Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI) together with ECIC and NEXI covered commercial banks.

https://www.africanlawbusiness.com/news/7797-a-corridor-to-prosperity


Sinopec Signs $1b Iranian Abadan Refinery Expansion Deal

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 30 December 2017) China's Sinopec Engineering Company has signed a deal worth $1 billion to develop Abadan Oil Refinery, Iran's oldest crude processing facility in the southern oil-rich Khuzestan Province, the Chinese oil and gas group announced. According to Iranian officials, the venture will be financed by China Export and Credit Insurance Corporation, or Sinosure. The funding is reportedly part of a deal worth $3 billion to overhaul and expand the facility. Sinosure is China's major state-owned export credit insurance company. Its financing since its establishment in 2001 has totaled $290 billion for exports and investments. Commissioned in 1912, Abadan refinery is the longest-running Iranian crude refinery and once the largest oil refinery in the world.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/energy/78896/sinopec-signs-1b-abadan-refin...


Kuwait Seals US$6.245bn ECA-Backed Corporate Transaction

(Bonds & Loans, London, 5 December 2017) Kuwait National Petroleum Company’s (KNPC) US$6.245bn ECA-backed loan was a triumph for the company’s Clean Fuel Project and the region’s credit markets, setting a new record for the largest ECA-backed corporate loan to date. The Project involves modernisation of the Mina Al Ahmadi and Mina Abdullah oil refineries of KNPC located in Al Ahmadi Governorate, south of the country, to make their products meet stringent environmental requirements. Total debt financing for the Project is estimated to be around US$10bn. The financing package is supported by 7 ECAs: Atradius Dutch State Business N.V., Export-Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM), the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), Korea Trade Insurance Corporation (K-Sure), Nippon Export and Investment Insurance, SACE, and UK Export Finance. JBIC and KEXIM extended direct financing to KNPC while the other agencies provided cover to commercial bank lenders involved in the transaction.

http://www.bondsloans.com/news/article/1471/case-study-knpc-seals-usd6245bn-loan...


What's New November 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • Brussels Seminar December 4: Transparency and due diligence at Europe’s ECAs
  • OECD, It’s Time for Export Credit Agencies to Stop Funding Fossil Fuels
  • Too Coal-Hearted: Japan and Korea’s Support for Dirty Energy
  • Japanese Groups Strongly Object to JBIC Premature Loan Disbursement, Ingoring Upcoming Community Lawsuit
  • Japanese banks & JIBC back coal links between Japan & Africa
  • May Vies With Trump for Aramco Listing with ECA support
  • Airbus braces for a difficult landing after corruption allegations
  • Great Barrier Reef Pitted Against Coal Jobs in Australia Vote
  • ECAs are stepping up their SME support initiatives.

Brussels Seminar December 4: Transparency and due diligence at Europe’s ECAs

(CEE Bankwatch Network, Prague, 22 November 2017) In 2015-2017 Finance & Trade Watch and CEE Bankwatch Network together with its national partners researched export credit agencies (ECAs) in seven countries of the European Union (Austria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia). The results of this research will be presented at a seminar in Brussels on December 4, 2017 at the Leopold Hotel  19:00 - 20:30 followed by a reception.

  • Opening remarks by Heidi Hautala, vice President of the European Parliament
  • Remarks on the position of European Parliament by Anna Záborská, Member of the EP Development Committee
  • Reflections on the issues of EU Member states ECAs by Silvia Gavorníková, EXIMBANKA Slovakia
  • Introduction of the research project by Thomas Wenidoppler, Finance and Trade Watch
  • Issues and Recommendations related to Transparency and Due Diligence of ECAs by Dana Mareková, CEE Bankwatch Network

To participate, register here




OECD, It’s Time for Export Credit Agencies to Stop Funding Fossil Fuels

(Friends of the Earth US, Washington, 14 November 2017) Precisely as the world’s attention is focused on addressing climate devastation at the 23rd United Nations Climate Conference (COP23) in Bonn, Germany, the largest public drivers of fossil fuel financing are meeting a mere 320 miles away in Paris. The irony couldn’t be starker. Representatives of the very same countries singing their own praises in Bonn are fomenting climate disaster from Paris, at a meeting of export credit agencies (ECAs) at the Organization of Cooperation and Development (OECD) Export Credit Group. Export credit agencies (ECAs) — which are bodies funded by taxpayers to support business overseas — are world leaders in public support for climate destruction. While relatively obscure but powerful institutions, ECAs provide government-backed loans, guarantees, insurance, and credits to projects overseas — including many energy projects — in the hopes of boosting their home countries’ exports and creating and maintaining jobs. According to a recent report by Friends of the Earth U.S. and Oil Change International, ECAs fund almost $40 billion worth of fossil fuel projects each year. That is a whopping 12 times more than what they spend on clean energy projects.

https://medium.com/@foe_us/oecd-its-time-for-export-credit-agencies-to-stop-fund...


Too Coal-Hearted: Japan and Korea’s Support for Dirty Energy

(Natural Resources Defense Council, New York, 13 November 2017) Two years ago, OECD countries agreed to place limits on coal finance. Are countries following through on their commitments? The results are mixed. Most governments have stopped financing coal and shifted finance to clean energy projects. The worst actors, Japan and Korea, are continuing to provide billions for coal projects. Continued government financing for international coal projects undermines the Paris Agreement and the prospects of a low-carbon future. To address climate change, governments must shift international public finance toward smarter, sustainable options such as solar and wind power.

https://www.nrdc.org/experts/han-chen/too-coal-hearted-japan-and-koreas-support-...


Japanese Groups Strongly Object to JBIC Premature Loan Disbursement, Ingoring Upcoming Community Lawsuit

(FOE Japan, Tokyo, 14 November 2017) On November 14, The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) disbursed the first installment of a loan for the 1000 MW Cirebon coal-fired power plant expansion plan which Marubeni and JERA invested in, known as Cirebon 2. The total loan amount JBIC has signed in the loan agreement is around USD 731 million. However, the validity of the new environment permit, which has only recently been issued, is still in question. The local community and NGO groups, which are opposing the project, are preparing to file an administrative lawsuit next week, demanding the revocation of the new environment permit. This would make it impossible for the Cirebon 2 project to violate the laws of the host country (Indonesia) and the “JBIC Guidelines for Confirmation of Environmental and Social Considerations”. This disrepectful JBIC neglect of the lawsuit by local residents is a repeat of its conclusion of the loan agreement without an adequate EIA. JBIC had a meeting with the local community and NGO groups in Indonesia last October and directly heard their concerns and the judicial risks. Nevertheless, JBIC decided to disburse the loan and just push through with the project ignoring their concerns.

http://www.foejapan.org/en/aid/171114.html


Japanese banks & JIBC back coal links between Japan & Africa

(Global Capital, London, 1 November 2017) Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and a syndicate of lenders have provided a $2.73bn loan to finance the construction of a railway and upgrade a port in Mozambique, which will ensure the long term supply of coal to Japan from the African country. JBIC provided $1.03bn of the deal with the rest provided by African Development Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC), Mizuho, Standard Chartered, Nippon Life Insurance Co, MUFG and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank.

http://www.globalcapital.com/article/b15v74t296bqjc/japanese-banks-back-coal-lin...


May Vies With Trump for Aramco Listing with ECA support

(Bloomberg, London, 29 November 2017) U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said London is “extremely well-placed’’ to win a planned stock exchange listing by Saudi Arabia Oil Co., as she competes against U.S. President Donald Trump for the coveted initial share sale by the world’s largest crude producer. Aramco, worth trillions, is mulling an international sale in addition to a listing on the Saudi exchange. Trump earlier this month tweeted his hope that the Saudis would use a U.S. exchange, before lobbying Saudi King Salman personally on a phone call. The UK government earlier this month agreed to a $2 billion loan guarantee, an unusually large export credit guarantee that’s designed to finance the purchase of British goods, but that also opened May up to the suggestion she was trying to influence the listing decision.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-29/may-vies-with-trump-for-aramc...


Airbus braces for a difficult landing after corruption allegations

(Guardian, London, 5 November 2017) A UK Serious Fraud Office probe into allegedly misleading statements made by Airbus to UK Export Finance, the government department that provides commercial support for major deals has ballooned with further allegations of corruption. The investigation concerns whether Airbus lied to the government about its use of intermediaries. It is understood that Airbus has not received any further support from UKEF since it was informed of the allegations in April last year. Der Spiegel has published a lengthy investigative piece alleging that Europe’s largest aerospace multinational had operated a London slush fund, distributing millions of dollars to accounts held by companies in tax havens. Before the month was out, the firm would reveal to investors that it had reported itself to authorities in the US, this time over potentially breaching regulations on the use of agents to sell sensitive weapons technology.

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/nov/04/airbus-year-corporate-confessio...


Great Barrier Reef Pitted Against Coal Jobs in Australia Vote

(ABC, Sydney, 22 November 2017) As the world grapples with the fossil fuel’s role in the future energy mix, Indian bilionaire Guatam Adani's proposed Carmichael coal mine became a defining issue in Australia's Queensland election. An unnamed Adani Mining director was quoted as saying the company is close to securing a deal with Chinese enterprises and export credit agencies to fund both the mine and the rail link, and that Adani wouldn’t need a loan of up to $1 billion from the federal Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) for the rail line. A formal announcement about the financing deal is said to be imminent, but the ABC reports that reliance on funds from Chinese enterprises and export credit agencies could cost Australia jobs associated with the project. Such Chinese interests invariably require that materials for key infrastructure are sourced from China and that effective shifts work out of Australia. Coal and the impact of climate change on Australia's Great Barrier Reef were an issue in the election.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-21/great-barrier-reef-pitched-ag...


ECAs are stepping up their SME support initiatives.

(TXF News, London 23 November 2017) Application processes and ease of access to export cover is improving. But as commercial banks retreat from the SME loans market, more ECA direct lending to SME exporters is a must. Many export credit agencies (ECAs) have been, or are in the process of, stepping up their support for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). Finnvera, Credendo, Atradius, Sace, EFIC and Euler Hermes already have streamlined services specifically targeted at SME customers. UKEF has entered into partnerships with five commercial banks – Santander, Barclays, Lloyds, Natwest/RBS, and HSBC – to allow customers to access export finance from commercial bank branches. And Bpifrance hopes to create a one-stop-shop for exporters to increase accessibility. But for all the initiatives, meeting the very different needs of the majority of SMEs remains elusive. For example, UKEF has introduced capacity to provide funding in 40 local currencies. In short – the needs spectrum of SMEs is so broad that ECAs are in the difficult position of trying to 'please all of the people all of the time'.

https://www.txfnews.com//News/Article/6308/tmp


What's New October 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • G20 countries need to stop using export credit agencies to finance fossil fuel projects
  • French ECA BPI joins other ECAs in support of controversial Yamal LNG arctic project
  • Geneva negotiations continue for an international business & human rights treaty, including ECAs
  • Opinion: If the UK wants to increase the provision of aid to the private sector, we must play it straight
  • UK government increases support for SME trade
  • NEXI and UKEF complete One-Stop-Shop reinsurance agreement
  • Canada's GoviEx Uranium gets ECA financing interest in Niger's Madaouela project
  • Armenia to receive $100-million military export credit loan from Russia
  • Sace backs Mexican gas pipeline project
  • No, China is not about to become the world’s largest aid donor
  • Blockchain: Implications for Trade Transparency

G20 countries need to stop using export credit agencies to finance fossil fuel projects

(FOE US, Washington, 16 October 2017) Although at least seven major countries — including Canada, France, and Germany — have made commitments to phase out coal power domestically, their export credit agencies, or ECAs, have poured money into coal plants and other fossil fuel projects in other countries. According to a new report by Friends of the Earth U.S. and Oil Change International, ECAs annually fund $32 billion worth of projects in the oil and gas sector alone. That is 11 times more than what ECAs provide to clean energy projects. The OECD Export Credit Group has implemented restrictions on financing of some coal plants but unfortunately, these restrictions are not enough to stem the destructive financing of ECAs. Key findings of the report include: From 2013 to 2015, G20 ECAs provided 12 times as much support to fossil fuels as clean energy; ECAs provided over $32 billion annually to support oil and gas projects; Japan is the worst offender, providing over $13 billion annually to fossil fuels, followed by Korea and the United States supporting almost $8 and almost $6 billion annually, respectively. An end to ECA’s support of fossil fuels would probably stop many dangerous projects from going forward. One is a coal plant in Vietnam — Long Phu 1 — that would produce at least 6.3 million tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. Another project is the development of liquefied natural gas in northern Mozambique, which has already destroyed the land of local communities and endangers unique ecosystems such as mangroves and coral reefs. The president of the World Bank recently noted that plans to build more coal-fired power plants in Asia would be a “disaster for the planet” and overwhelm the deal forged at Paris to fight climate change. The report recommends that all ECAs disclose the amount and nature of all fossil fuel-related transactions, as well as information on their decision making process, and formulate policies to phase out all support for fossil fuels. The report follows an NGO coalition's July 2017 report showing G20 nations provide four times more public financing to fossil fuels than to renewable energy.

https://foe.org/g20-countries-need-stop-using-export-credit-agencies-finance-fos...


French ECA BPI joins other ECAs in support of controversial Yamal LNG arctic project

(ECA Watch, Ottawa, 30 October 2017) French ECA BPI has announced a €350 million guarantee contract with TechnipFMC for the development of the controversial $27 billion Yamal LNG project in Russia's far north. German Japanese, Swedish, Italian and Chinese ECAs have also supported the project. Experts from the Rivers Without Borders Coalition, after studying the Environmental and social impact assessment (ESIA), which was conducted in accordance with Russian law, concluded that the current ESIA does not provide sufficient information, analysis or a comprehensive management plan for addressing the project’s significant impacts on biodiversity, fishing, indigenous peoples, and accidents, a conclusion also reached by WWW Russia in 2015. It is interesting to note that Arnaud Caudoux, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Bpifrance, is also a member of the Board of TechnipFMC. TechnipFMC hs also requested BPI support for its participation in the $7 billion Coral LNG project in Mozambique.

http://www.bpifrance.fr/content/download/66864/724637/version/1/file/Contrats%20...


Geneva negotiations continue for an international business & human rights treaty, including ECAs

(Lexology, London, 24 October 2017) An intergovernmental working group mandated to draft a new international legal instrument to regulate the activities of transnational corporations in relation to human rights is holding its third meeting in Geneva this week. Negotiations for a business and human rights treaty have been ongoing since 2014 when the Human Rights Council established an open-ended mandate (discussed in further detail here) to revoke business licences and subsidies, if and to the extent necessary, from offenders; and revise relevant tax codes, public procurement contracts, export credit and other forms of State support, privileges and advantages in case of human rights violations,

https://lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=d9ee7159-aad5-4a26-a6e6-b71ffac344ce


Opinion: If the UK wants to increase the provision of aid to the private sector, we must play it straight

(Devex, Washington, 27 October 2017) This summer, the British Conservative Party, through their manifesto and the pages of the Daily Mail, issued the OECD DAC — a multilateral group of donors that sets the definition of aid — an ultimatum: allow us to widen the definition [of aid] to include more private equity, more military spending, and more domestic spending, [and more ECA support?] or Britain will pull out. Pulling out of the OECD DAC would mark a dangerous precedent. Can any donor country chalk up anything it wants as aid? Export credit? How about concessional arms sales? And what would pulling out of this multilateral group do for the international norms and standards for the delivery of aid that Britain has helped shape over decades?

https://www.devex.com/news/opinion-if-the-uk-wants-to-increase-the-provision-of-...


UK government increases support for SME trade

(Specialist Banking, London, 29 October 2017) UK Export Finance (UKEF) – the UK’s export credit agency – has launched a new partnership with five major high street banks,  Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, RBS/NatWest & Santander, enabling smaller businesses to access millions of pounds in government-backed trade finance directly from their banks in seconds. Companies which supply exporters can now access UKEF-backed finance for the first time, helping them become part of major export contracts. [It is not clear how or if the OECD Common Approaches will apply to this support.]

http://specialistbanking.co.uk/government-increases-support-sme-trade/


NEXI and UKEF complete One-Stop-Shop reinsurance agreement

(Reinsurance News, Brighton, 5 October 2017) The agreement supports a framework for reinsurance underwriting between NEXI and UKEF, and enables cooperation between the pair in relation to the export of Japanese products via a reinsurance transaction that also involves UK exporters. "When a Japanese company joins a project in a third country in conjunction with a foreign company, One-Stop-Shop Reinsurance agreements make it possible for NEXl to undertake the risk portion of exports made from Japan,” explains the announcement. Adding; “Suppose a Japanese company exports to a third country with a foreign company under a consortium, and the foreign company obtains insurance from its own ECA for the entire contract amount including the portion exported by Japanese company; NEXl will provide reinsurance to the foreign ECA for the portion exported from Japan.”

https://www.reinsurancene.ws/nexi-ukef-complete-one-stop-shop-reinsurance-agreem...


Canada's GoviEx Uranium gets ECA financing interest in Niger's Madaouela project

(Mining Technology, London, 3 October 2017) GoviEx Uranium has received expressions of interest from export credit agencies and project finance banks to arrange $220m of senior debt financing for the construction of the Madaouela uranium project in Niger. Conditions for the debt financing include long-term off-take contracts to be signed with nuclear utility counterparties, as well as export credit agency insurance cover being in-place, depending on the nationality of either the off-take and/or procurement counterparties. [Niger exports enough uranium to France to generate 50 per cent of the latter’s electricity supply, but ordinary Nigeriens reap little benefit from France’s control of their country’s uranium resources, with over three-fifths of the population living below the poverty line and reports of radioactive contamination of water, air and soil by multinational mining operations. Recent US press reports ask if  US troops died in Niger protecting French and Chinese uranium?]

http://www.mining-technology.com/news/newsgoviex-uranium-receives-proposals-for-...


Armenia to receive $100-million military export credit loan from Russia

(ARKA, Yerevan, 12 October 2017) At its regular Thursday meeting, the Armenian government okayed a proposal to sign a $100-million loan agreement with Russia to purchase defense armaments. In accordance with the agreement, Russia will provide an export credit loan to Armenia for financing supplies of Russia-made ammunition for Armenia’s army. The loan will be extended for 15 years (from 2023 to 2037) at a 3% annual interest rate, and Armenia has to use these financial resources at a period between 2018 and 2022. In June 2015, Armenia signed a $200-million an export credit loan agreement with Russia for acquiring Russia-made military industry products. The loan was provided for 13 years with a three-year grace period at a 3% annual interest rate. Under this agreement, Armenia buys from Russia Smerch multiple rocket launchers, Igla surface-to-air missile, TOS-1 A multiple rocket launchers, Tigr armored vehicles and 9М113М wire-guided anti-tank missiles as well as sniper riffles, engineering and communications devices.

http://arka.am/en/news/politics/yerevan_to_receive_100_million_military_loan_fro...


Sace backs Mexican gas pipeline project

(Global Trade Review, London, 11 October 2017) Italian engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor Sicilsaldo has secured an €80mn contract for a gas pipeline project in Mexico, with the backing of Italian export credit agency Sace. “Sace has backed 80% of the €80mn”, a spokesperson for Sace tells GTR. The contract is part of a 560km gas pipeline project that will cross the states of Chihuahua and Sonora. Price tagged at US$560mn, the pipe will have capacity of over 550 million cubic feet.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/europe/sace-backs-mexican-pipe-project/


No, China is not about to become the world’s largest aid donor

(Quartz Media, New York, 11 October 2017) US president Donald Trump’s plans to slash the American government’s overseas spending has led to a rash of speculation that China could emerge as a new “global leader” on everything from free trade to the world’s fight to combat climate change, including reports that suggest China could become the world’s most generous country as well. The suggestion however is based on a study (pdf) which does not suggest China is in “pole position” to be the world’s biggest aid donor. It breaks down China’s overseas finance by destination and type from 2000 to 2014, and shows that Beijing is sending much more money abroad, but most of that money can’t be described as aid. China contributed over $350 billion in “official finance” to 140 countries and territories over that time, the study says. But much of that official finance wasn’t “official development assistance,” or aid, as defined by the OECD, which is finance specifically for local economic development or to improve welfare in the recipient country; it can’t profit the donor country; and at least 25% of the amount must be provided to the recipient as a grant. Beijing’s loans often come with some very serious strings attached. Often, the money must be used by the recipient country to buy materials or contracts from China’s state-owned companies, which would boost production and profits at home. In other words, the loans are more like a company extending export credit to an overseas customer who buys its goods

https://qz.com/1099819/us-foreign-aid-in-the-time-of-trump-china-still-is-not-ab...


Blockchain: Implications for Trade Transparency

(Banking Technology, London, 19 October 2017) Amid the hype around distributed ledger technology and blockchain it can seem they are technologies looking for solutions. Trade finance is a complex, paper-based activity. It encompasses lending, issuing letters of credit, factoring, export credit and insurance. Companies involved with a trade finance transaction include importers and exporters, banks and financiers, insurers and export credit agencies, and other service providers, such as customs organisations. Documentation is an important aspect of trade finance, but it isn’t standardised and invoices, letters of credit and bills of lading can differ greatly from country to country. Japanese bank Mizuho recently completed a trade finance transaction between Australia and Japan, digitising all necessary documentation and sharing the data with multiple participants across a distributed ledger. A consortium of seven European banks have formed the Digital Trade Chain (DTC) initiative, a blockchain-based digital platform for managing and tracking domestic and cross-border open account trade transactions. The members of the consortium are KBC, Unicredit, HSBC, Rabobank, Societe Generale, Deutsche Bank and Natixis. The distributed nature of the data could significantly reduce cycle times – for example, by making data simultaneously available to all parties in a transaction, each could perform their respective checks in parallel, reaping immediate benefits over today’s slower, linear approach. [There should be concerns however that this is a brand-new technology that is not defined by regulators, raising concerns about transparency if access to trade data is limited only to corporate interests, which may wish to protect the economic, social and environmental impacts of their trade activities from public scrutiny.]

http://www.bankingtech.com/1021802/blockchain-a-world-of-possibilities/


What's New September 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Australia’s export credit agency ordered to ­extend loans to coal ventures

(The Australian, Sydney, 11 September 2017) A ban on government-backed loans for onshore coal and ­resource export operations will be overturned in the “national interest” to help fund billions of dollars in projects that are threatened by the growing reluctance of the major banks to back them. Trade Minister Steve Ciobo will issue a direction this week to Australia’s export credit agency to broaden its mandate and ­extend loans to viable small-to-medium sized onshore resource ventures including coal projects and related infrastructure struggling to secure private-market ­finance... The ANZ bank last week ­declared it was unlikely to finance a proposal to extend the life of AGL’s Liddell coal-fired power station in NSW on environmental grounds despite the warnings from the energy regulator that an energy price and supply crisis was looming due to the lack of reliable baseload power... Efic has reported an increasing number of resource projects ­facing difficulties in obtaining ­private-market finance either ­because of a higher commercial risk profile in the post-mining boom environment but also due to the recent rise in aggressive campaigning by activist groups putting pressure on the banks.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/overturned-loans-ban-offe...


NGOs urge Bank of Tokyo - Mitsubishi to reject Vietnamese coal plant finance

(Friends of the Earth, Washington, 29 September 2017) NGOs have urged the Bank of Tokyo – Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU) to reject financing for the Long Phu-1 coal plant in Vietnam. In light of its recent accreditation at the Green Climate Fund and the commitment to addressing climate change that this accreditation implies, BTMU’s support for this climate-polluting debacle would be particularly inappropriate and reflect a complete disregard for international climate goals as set out in the Paris Agreement. The US Ex-Im Bank environmental assessment of the project noted that it will produce 63 times the annual 100,000 tonnes of CO2 limit that requires alternative project analyses under Equator Bank Principles, an analysis that the Bank has failed to undertake... Long Phu-1 violates a broad set of environmental and social policies, and an independent expert analysis has demonstrated that the project sponsor’s consulting firm doctored the coal plant’s greenhouse gas emissions estimates to appear compliant with international policies.

https://foe.org/publication/long-phu-1-bank-tokyo-mufj-letter/


Boeing took a foreign firm to task over subsidies. Critics say Boeing gets ECA and other help, too.

(Washington Post, Washington, 28 September 2017) The Commerce Department signaled its intent to impose a 219 percent tariff on Canadian-made jetliners, claiming aircraft maker Bombardier has been unfairly propped up by the Canadian government... But critics of the decision say Boeing itself benefits from its own form of government support, which includes federal contracts and tax breaks from state governments in the United States — a reflection of how U.S. corporations are also dependent on government policies, contracts, decisions and in some cases direct financial inducements in their attempts to remain internationally competitive... Others argue that the U.S. Export-Import Bank indirectly facilitates Boeing’s sales abroad, because the bank’s loans effectively allow foreign airlines to purchase Boeing jets at a discount.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/boeing-took-a-foreign-firm-to-ta...


Airbus in talks to settle ECA fraud claims for £1 billion

(Evening Standard, London, 15 September 2017) The Serious Fraud Office and French prosecutors are in close discussion over the terms of a £1 billion-plus settlement for Airbus over corruption allegations. The deal, called a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA), would be the largest ever in Europe, after a year-long investigation into irregular payments by Airbus to intermediaries. The French and German-owned plane maker allegedly used highly-paid fixers around the world to sell A380 planes worth billions to China, Turkey, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates and others.  Sales to Kazakhstan, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia are being investigated separately. Airbus has admitted “misstatements and omissions relating to information provided in respect of third party consultants in certain applications for export credit finance for Airbus customers”.

https://www.standard.co.uk/business/airbus-in-talks-to-settle-fraud-claims-for-1...


Standard Bank Seeks to ECA funding for $3 billion Ugandan Oil Pipeline

(Bloomberg, Kampala, 15 August 2017) Standard Bank Group Ltd.’s Ugandan unit plans to raise $3 billion for a crude pipeline by the second half of next year as the East African country prepares to start oil production by 2020. Companies will explore raising bank debt or loans from export credit agencies among the options they are considering. The 1445 kilometer pipeline will connect Uganda’s Hoima oilfields in the west to the port of Tanga in neighboring Tanzania.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-15/standard-bank-seeks-to-raise-...


Merkel Mulls Revision of Hermes Support for Ankara as Two Germans Detained in Turkey

(Sputnik, Berlin, 3 September 2017) German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Sunday that Berlin cannot stop the talks on Turkey's accession, but it would impose economic punitive measures in response to arrests of German citizens... She added that Berlin could put pressure on Ankara in terms of its economy, in particular by issuing a stricter warning to those who wanted to visit the country and by introducing restrictions on loans from the European Central Bank, World Bank and Hermes export credit guarantees issued by the German government.

https://sputniknews.com/europe/201709031057053190-merkel-schulz-turkey-migration...


Trump's Ex-Im Nominee Scott Garrett Elegantly Squares The Circular Republican Firing Squad

(Forbes, 17 September 2017) Former Representative Scott Garrett is on record, as reported by Politico, as committed to supporting President Trump’s commitment to having a “‘functional’ export credit agency” while seeing Ex-Im, which provides trade financing to American exporters, "reformed and modernized as outlined by Congress." This is entirely sound.Former Representative Scott Garrett is on record, as reported by Politico, as committed to supporting President Trump’s commitment to having a “‘functional’ export credit agency” while seeing Ex-Im, which provides trade financing to American exporters, "reformed and modernized as outlined by Congress." According to an article in Politico, “In 2015, Garrett said the agency ‘embodies the corruption of the free enterprise system.’” This, of course, endeared him to free market conservatives while offending Ex-Im's beneficiaries. Trump’s budget chief Mick Mulvaney said on CNBC that Trump was now pro-Ex-Im, and the president himself professed his love for Boeing's bank to the Wall Street Journal. The president said he planned to fill two vacancies on the bank's board, which has been effectively paralyzed with three open seats on its five-member board.

https://www.forbes.com/asites/ralphbenko/2017/09/17/president-trumps-nominee-sco...


Iran Receives First Round of Post-Sanctions Finance From European Banks and ECAs

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 23 September 2017) In what were the first finance deals clinched with cautious European banks after the implementation of the nuclear accord provided sanctions relief in January 2016, Iran signed two agreements worth a total of €1.5 billion ($1.8 billion) with Austria's Oberbank and Denmark's Danske Bank on Thursday. According to Oberbank's CEO, export credit guarantees covering 99% of a project’s volume will be provided by the Oesterreichische Kontrollbank (OeKB), the main Austrian body that issues them.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/economy-business-and-markets/72854/iran-re...


What's New August 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • EU Commission underscores the role of ECAs in achieving Paris goals
  • UK undermining climate targets with export credit for fossil fuel projects abroad
  • Dakota Access Pipeline Owner Sues Enviros for Terrorism
  • Germany is reviewing export credit guarantees for German companies doing business with Turkey
  • UK Export Finance Publishes Their Annual Reports and Accounts
  • Iran Has a Long Way to Go to Restore Pre-Sanctions Ties
  • GAO: Status of Ex-Im End-Use Monitoring of Dual-Use Exports
  • Trump gives Ex-Im pick a chance to rescue nomination
  • EDC backed Bombardier sale to Zuma allies accused of corruption
  • Massive Nigerian investments coming with ECA and local financing

EU Commission underscores the role of ECAs in achieving Paris goals

(ECA Watch & Both ENDS, Amsterdam, 24 August 2017) In response to a European Greens Parliamentary question, Cecilia Malmström, European Commissioner for Trade, replied on behalf of the Commission that: "While in the understanding of the Commission the Paris Agreement does not directly address the export credit activities of the Member States, its core objectives should also be duly taken into account in this area [i.e. ECAs] like in all areas of government activity." The EC rightly recalls that the Coal-Fired Electricity Generation Projects Sector Understanding (CFSU) was a political contribution of the OECD Export Credit Group (ECG) to the Paris Agreement on climate action. However, even before closing the negotiations on the CFSU the International Energy Agency stated that, in order to keep global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius, new coal-fired power plants as well as at least two thirds of the existing stock should be closed by 2035. As a typical coal fired power plant has a life span of 30-40 years, the rationale of ECA support for all new coal-fired power plant thus is questionable. Last June, Both ENDS published a report that shows that 2/3 of the insured value of projects supported by the Dutch export credit agency, i.e. € 7.3 billion between 2012 & 2015, was for the fossil fuel sector. ADSB’s support for renewable energy projects in this period was only 1% of the insured value for energy-supporting projects. Overall OECD ECA data shows that between 2005 & 2014 38% of non renewable electric power generation projects worth US$35 billion (5.6% of total OECD ECA business) went to coal, 42% to Natural Gas and 17% to oil/diesel - i.e 97% to fossil fuels. Renewable electric power projects in that period were worth US$19.5 billion or 3.1% of OECD ECA business.  This underscores the need for all OECD governments to review whether and how publicly backed ECAs effectively contribute to the Paris Agreement goals.​




UK undermining climate targets with export credit for fossil fuel projects abroad

(The Actuary, London, 23 August 2017) Some 99.4% of the energy support given to foreign countries between 2010 and 2014 by the government department UK Export finance (UKEF) went towards fossil fuel projects, according to new research. This is done through helping UK firms invest overseas by providing guarantees, insurance and reinsurance against loss, acting as the country’s export credit agency. The catholic charity CAFOD, which commissioned the research, argues that this is undermining progress made by other departments in tackling climate change, as well as international targets set out in the Paris Agreement.

http://www.theactuary.com/news/2017/08/uk-undermining-climate-change-targets-by-...


Dakota Access Pipeline Owner Sues Enviros for Terrorism

(BankTrack, Nijmegen, 22 August 2017) BankTrack has taken note of the outrageous allegations in the lawsuit that ETP/ETE has filed against BankTrack, Greenpeace International, Greenpeace Inc., Greenpeace Fund, Inc., Earth First!, and other organizations and individuals that together opposed the Dakota Access Pipeline Project. BankTrack vehemently rejects all accusations brought forward by ETP/ETE. BankTrack considers the lawsuit an attempt of ETP/ETE to silence civil society organisations, and to curb their crucial role in helping to foster business conduct globally that protects the environment, recognises the rights and interests of all stakeholders, and respects human rights. This attempt is bound to fail.

https://www.banktrack.org/news/banktrack_sued_by_etpete_for_campaigning_against_...


Germany is reviewing export credit guarantees for German companies doing business with Turkey

(Spiegel, Ankara, 1 August 2017) As Germany and Turkey struggle with the increasingly strained state of their relationship, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek stresses the two countries' longstanding friendship in an interview with DER SPIEGEL. He also says it is Ankara's duty to rid the state of terrorist elements. The German government has announced a change of course in its policy towards Turkey. For a start, it will be reviewing export credit guarantees for German companies doing business with Turkey. Simsek noted that "Germany is the leader of the EU. We take what Germany says seriously. But the reaction of the German government clearly appears to be based on false information." Turkish authorities gave Germany's Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) a list of nearly 700 companies that supposedly support terrorism, including Daimler and BASF.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/interview-with-turkish-deputy-prime-m...


UK Export Finance Publishes Their Annual Reports and Accounts

(Manufacturing & Engineeing Magazine, London, 3 August 2017) UK Export Finance, or UKEF, the Government and UK export credit agency has released a report for their transactions of the past year. The published material shows that the Government supported around £458 million of sales overseas for manufacturers. According to the report and figures that have been published, the UKEF provided support to the value of £3 billion for exports from UK manufacturers. The figures show that 79% of the companies that have benefitted from this support over the course of the 2016-17 year were small and medium sized enterprises. The UKEF supported companies by offering finance and insurance which according to the figures released, has allowed 221 companies the opportunity to export their goods to 63 different countries around the world. The most recent OECD cash flow statistics for most OECD ECAs is for 2015 and the OECD breakdown of ECA sectoral activities is a series of very broad stroke graphs covering the entire period from 2005 to 2014.

http://www.memuk.org/business/government/uk-export-finance-published-annual-repo...


Iran Has a Long Way to Go to Restore Pre-Sanctions Ties

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 14 August 2017) Trade with Italy is being restored slower than expected following the removal of international sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, reads an opinion piece written by Iranian co-chair of Iran-Italy Chamber of Commerce in the news portal of Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture. In addition, Iran Aseman Airlines says business sources have informed it that undecided roles inside the US Treasury Department have delayed the issuance of licenses for the sales of jets the airline has ordered from global planemakers... The airline said in June that it expected Treasury permits to come as soon as a few weeks. However, the licenses for this order, as well as others whose agreements have been signed or are soon to be signed with Boeing, Airbus and other global aircraft manufacturers are still awaiting a go-ahead by the US. Meanwwhile the Swedish-Iranian Chamber of Trade and Commerce is organizing the First Nordic Iranian Business Summit and Expo in Stockholm. The summit is scheduled for November 20-21, 2017, and the expo for February 16-18, 2018, according to the events' website. Hosting companies and delegations from Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and other European countries as well as Iran, the events are aimed at introducing investment opportunities in Iran's infrastructure, ICT, mining & steel, health & pharmaceuticals, banking & finance, environment and energy.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/economy-domestic-economy/70261/italy-has-l...


GAO: Status of Ex-Im End-Use Monitoring of Dual-Use Exports

(GAO, Washington, 29 August 2017) Every year, the Government Aaccountability Office (GAO) reports on the Export-Import Bank, which helps finance U.S. companies' exports. The Bank may not finance defense goods and services, but it can finance exports that have both civilian and military uses (dual use). The Bank monitors the use of these exports to ensure that they are used mostly for civilian purposes. This year, the Bank determined that dual-use exports were in compliance with this policy. However, it made its determination about satellites sold to the Mexican government before receiving all required information. It was also late completing its determination about construction equipment sold to the Cameroon military. The full report is available here. (pdf)

http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-17-730R


Trump gives Ex-Im pick a chance to rescue nomination

(Politico, Washington, 2 August 2017) President Donald Trump is giving former Rep. Scott Garrett a chance to save his nomination to lead the Export-Import Bank just weeks after the president privately questioned the appointment amid intense pushback from business groups. The New Jersey Republican’s confirmation has been in doubt for months amid concern about his record in Congress, where he led efforts to try to kill the bank and took positions on LGBT issues that unnerved his corporate backers. An administration official said Trump has “given Garrett an opportunity” to try to prove he can secure enough votes in the Senate. The president has underscored his support for Garrett in conversations with conservative lawmakers, a second administration official said. “He’s looking to get a reformer in there,” the second official said, adding that Trump hopes Garrett can change the agency. The administration itself is developing a plan to make sweeping changes to the bank, officials said. But it's unclear when they will be unveiled publicly.

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/08/02/trump-import-export-garrett-241270


EDC backed Bombardier sale to Zuma allies accused of corruption

(Globe & Mail, Johannesburg, 3 August 2017) The Canadian government's export agency gave $41-million (U.S.) in financing to help Bombardier Inc. sell a luxury jet to the controversial tycoons at the heart of a South African scandal over alleged high-level corruption, leaked e-mails show. Export Development Canada, a Crown corporation, provided the money to a company owned by the Gupta family to help it buy a $52-million Global 6000 jet from Bombardier, the e-mails show. The powerful Gupta family, which has close connections to South African President Jacob Zuma and a business partnership with the President's son, is embroiled in an escalating scandal over widespread allegations of corruption and political influence. The scandal has forced Mr. Zuma to face a non-confidence vote in Parliament on Aug. 8. Critics are asking how the $41-million (U.S.) financing deal was authorized by Export Development Canada, since the borrowers – the politically powerful Gupta family of South Africa – have been surrounded by corruption allegations and investigations for the past seven years. But EDC says it cannot explain anything about the transaction.

https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/canada-financed-sale-of-bombardier-j...


Massive Nigerian investments coming with ECA and local financing

(African Business Magazine, London, 4 August 2017) Nigeria's Dangote Industries conglomerate has announced massive plans to expand into oil refining as well as large-scale agro processing with financing from local banks and the Central Bank of Nigeria providing working capital finance and own equity and export credit agencies financing equipment – sugar mills, coal generation power plant, ethanol distillery, paddy parboiling equipment, rice milling, polishing & sorting equipment, rice husk power plant, silos, etc.

http://africanbusinessmagazine.com/interviews/massive-investments-agriculture-oi...


What's New July 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • G20 public finance for fossil fuels 'is four times more than renewables'
  • Russia's $70 Billion ‘Secret’ Export Credit Spending Lets Money Do the Talking
  • Is EDC complicit in support of foreseeable human rights violations?
  • White House under pressure to drop Export-Import Bank nominee
  • Global export credit falls amid US Exim wipeout
  • Turkey’s growing repression leads to review of German ECA guarantees
  • Eximbank of Korea to finance gas field development project in Mozambique
  • UK government signs deal with major banks and contractors to raise exports post-Brexit
  • SACE’s support for exports grows, reaches €7.8 billion in H1
  • Norway launches new ECA backing in push for diversity

G20 public finance for fossil fuels 'is four times more than renewables'

(Guardian, London, 5 July 2017) The G20 nations provide four times more public financing to fossil fuels than to renewable energy, a report has revealed ahead of their summit in Hamburg, where Angela Merkel has said climate change will be at the heart of the agenda. The authors of the report accuse the G20 of “talking out of both sides of their mouths” and the summit faces the challenge of a sceptical US administration after Donald Trump pulled out of the global Paris agreement. The new report by a coalition of NGOs found that the G20 countries provided an average of $71.8bn of public finance for fossil-fuel projects per year between 2013-2015, compared with just $18.7bn for renewable energy. Japan provided the most at $16.5bn per year, which was six times more than it allotted for renewables. China, which is curbing its coal use and increasingly being seen as a climate leader, provided $13.5bn for fossil fuels but just $85m for green energy. Germany, also seen a climate leader, provided $3.5bn of public finance for fossil fuels, compared with $2.4bn for renewables. Britain provided $972m for fossil fuels, compared with $172m for renewable energy. The public finance comes in the form of soft loans and export credit guarantees from governments, and, along with huge fossil fuel subsidies, makes coal, oil and gas plants cheaper, and locks in carbon emissions for decades to come...  The Natural Resources Defence Council has noted that most of these emissions don’t count towards the G20's carbon footprint as they are funding coal projects abroad.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/05/g20-public-finance-for-fossil-fuel...


Russia's $70 Billion ‘Secret’ Export Credit Spending Lets Money Do the Talking

(Bloomberg, Moscow, 25 July 2017) As state secrets go, Russia’s program of export finance and loans to other nations might be one of the worst kept. While discussions about aiding cash-strapped allies frequently spill into the open, the Finance Ministry’s debt chief Konstantin Vyshkovsky says information about individual loans isn’t public and a budget addendum on state financial and export credit is classified as “secret.” But, speaking in an interview at his office a short walk from the Kremlin, Vyshkovsky said Russia has committed about $70 billion in total to such loans [over 20+ years?], a figure that hasn’t been disclosed before... The vast majority of money made available by the government covers export finance, with the borrower getting Russian products and services and a domestic company receiving the funds. Nuclear projects account for 90 percent of the $70 billion total in state loans, followed by the defense industry and civil aviation, according to Vyshkovsky.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-25/russia-s-70-billion-secret-sp...


Is EDC complicit in support of foreseeable human rights violations?

(Globe and Mail, Toronto, 21 September 2016) In 2015 Netsweeper Inc. of Waterloo Ontario, with support from Export Development Canada, sold Internet filtering technology to the government of Bahrain — a country criticized internationally for widespread suppression of human rights defenders through censorship, surveillance, arbitrary detention and torture. In 2016 Bahrain started using Netsweeper's Web-filtering software to keep a lid on dissent, a University of Toronto report said. It added that the Sunni-dominated monarchy is going so far as to use the software to deny Bahrain’s majority Shia citizens access to basic information about their religion and religious leaders. In 2015, the Netsweeper's software was also reported as being used to cut Yemen’s citizens off from learning about the civil war surrounding them. Following a February 2017 submission from ECA Watch member Above Ground which called for the adoption of regulatory and policy measures to ensure Canada is not complicit in foreseeable human rights violations associated with the use of digital censorship and surveillance technologies supplied by Canadian companies, EDC was called to to testify before Canada's Senate human rights committee. In their testemony, EDC stated that, at this point, the guarantee that is the subject of the complaint is no longer in place, nor is the company a customer of EDC.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/bahrain-using-canadian-software-to...


White House under pressure to drop Export-Import Bank nominee

(Politico, Washington, 17 July 2017) President Donald Trump is standing behind former Rep. Scott Garrett, his choice to head the Export-Import Bank, amid escalating pressure from business groups to pull the plug on the nomination. His record has driven businesses that rely on the agency to try to stop his nomination, even though they also want the Senate to confirm nominees who would fill out its board. During his career in Congress, Garrett was one of the most outspoken critics of the bank. In 2015, he said the agency “embodies the corruption of the free enterprise system.”  The bank has been unable to approve deals worth more than $10 million because of a lack of a quorum. Three Democratic Senators have argued that “If confirmed as chairman of the board, Mr. Garrett would have wide latitude to control the board’s agenda and substitute his personal views for the statutory mission of the bank, destroying it from within after failing in his efforts to persuade his colleagues to legislate its demise”. Trumps new communications officer Anthony Scaramucci was a senior vice-president and chief strategy officer at the Export-Import Bank.

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/17/scott-garrett-trump-export-import-bank-...


Global export credit falls amid US Exim wipeout

(Global Trade Review, London, 12 July 2017) Medium and long-term export credit activity nosedived among OECD countries in 2016, led by a massive decline in activity at US Exim. With notable exceptions (including France, Italy, Sweden and the UK) export credit volumes declined in many major markets. Most obviously, there was a 97% fall in support from US Exim, Japanese agency support dropped by 63%, backing from Euler Hermes in Germany was down 39%, while the numerous Korean agencies saw their export credit support fall by 23%. The Competitiveness Report by US Exim outlines the “sluggish global export growth of around 2% last year”, along with “massive market liquidity” around the world, which led to historic levels of activity from specialist financiers, such as private export credit insurers. However, the fact that US Exim spent much of the year in liquidation, and has yet to be revived under the US President Donald Trump (although he has voiced unexpected support for the export credit agency [ECA]) are the primary reasons for its lack of action. These issues are not alluded to in the report, which does not mention the US president once in 68 pages.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/americas/global-export-credit-falls-amid-us-exim-w...


Turkey’s growing repression leads to review of German ECA guarantees

(The Telegraph, Berlin, 21 July 2017) Germany announced a series of hardline measures against Turkey on Thursday amid rapidly deteriorating relations between the two Nato partners. Sigmar Gabriel, the German foreign minister, accused the Turkish government of the “arbitrary” arrest of German citizens on its soil and demanded their immediate release. In a series of measures that could threaten the fragile Turkish economy, he issued tough new travel advice for Germans on visiting the country, and ordered a review of export credit guarantees for German companies investing in Turkey. He also said Germany would seek a review of €630m (£560m) of aid Turkey currently receives each year from the EU, and of Turkey’s partial membership of the customs union.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/07/21/angela-merkel-backs-hardline-policy-t...


Eximbank of Korea to finance gas field development project in Mozambique

(Club of Mozambique, Maputo, 30 June 2017) The Export-Import Bank of Korea announced on June 27 that it has signed a project financing contract on June 26 for offshore gas field development in Mozambique. The gas field development project is a joint project of the Korea Gas Corporation, Exxon Mobil, Italian energy company Eni and Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH) of Mozambique. The signing ceremony was held in Rome, Italy. In the project, the eight institutions including the Export-Import Bank of Korea, the Korea Trade Insurance Corporation and the Export-Import Bank of China are scheduled to provide a total of US$5 billion as creditors. According to the contract, the Export-Import Bank of Korea is responsible for one-fifth of the amount. NGOs have noted that the proposal to construct the onshore liquefied natural gas plant could result in the relocation of thousands, the destruction of fragile coral reefs, and greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to an estimated 5.2m metric tonnes of carbon dioxide each year.

http://clubofmozambique.com/news/eximbank-of-korea-to-finance-gas-field-developm...


UK government signs deal with major banks and contractors to raise exports post-Brexit

(Bloomberg, London, 13 July 2017) Five of the U.K.’s leading retail banks have pledged more financial support for small British exporters, with government backing, as Prime Minister Theresa May’s administration prepares the country for life after Brexit. The U.K. said its export credit agency reached an agreement with Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, RBS/NatWest and Santander UK Plc to provide export-related trade finance, for example working capital loans and bonds required by overseas buyers, backed by government guarantees. The extra help for British companies to export is part of the U.K. government’s effort to prepare the economy for leaving the EU. Currently, the UK is lagging behind a number of European countries where exports are concerned – such as Germany – and there are worries that trade from UK businesses could weaken following last year’s EU referendum result. UKEF’s credit risk appetite was doubled to £5 billion by the government at the last Autumn Statement and the Department for International Trade (DIT) has set up a ‘Team UK’ construction consortia to bid for overseas contracts. Infrastructure Exports UK will bring together 17 leading UK construction firms and consultants which, individually, have worked on large-scale global projects. IE: UK board members will meet three times a year to choose the projects they wish to bid for as a single business, with government support.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-11/u-k-retail-banks-to-offer-mor...


SACE’s support for exports grows, reaches €7.8 billion in H1

(Italy/Europe 24, Rome, 26 July 2017) Italian export credit agency SACE is continuing to boost Italian companies abroad. Along with SIMEST – the other export and internationalization arm of state holding CDP – the SACE agency led by Alessandro Decio closed the first six months of this year with €7.8 billion of financial resources mobilized, up 19% compared to the same period of 2016.

http://www.italy24.ilsole24ore.com/art/business-and-economy/2017-07-25/italian-e...


Norway launches new ECA backing in push for diversity

(Global Trade Review, London, 5 July 2017) Norwegian export credit agency Giek has launched a new lender guarantee for export-related investments in Norway. The new product will provide guarantees to banks that finance corporate investment in Norway, where the investment directly or indirectly leads to exports. Aimed at boosting diversity in the oil and gas-rich nation, the guarantees will not be applicable to oil and gas processing plants, tourism, real estate development and large infrastructure projects.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/europe/norway-launches-new-eca-backing-in-push-for...


What's New June 2017

What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

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See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • Report: Why and how the Dutch government must exclude credit support for fossil fuel
  • EDC’s response to alleged abuse in Colombian oilfields highlights deficits in due diligence
  • New database reveals world’s biggest coal plant developers
  • Kuwait Seals US$6.25bn Loan in Largest ECA-Backed Corporate Transaction Ever
  • Yamal LNG raises more financing with coverage by Swedish and German ECAs
  • Italy's Eni signs LNG deal in Mozambique with ECA support
  • EXIM Banks of India and Korea sign MOU for export credit of USD 9 billion
  • Boeing strikes deal with Italian export credit agency in lieu of Ex-Im Bank
  • Trump sends Export-Import Bank nominees to Senate
  • Iran ECA Finance Talks Making Headway

Report: Why and how the Dutch government must exclude credit support for fossil fuel

(Both ENDS, Amsterdam, 14 June 2017) Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) are key institutions governments employ to support private companies doing business overseas. ECAs offer a wide range of guarantees and insurances to private companies. This makes it easier for these companies to gain access to finance, mostly from banks. Based on publicly available data, this report concludes that the Dutch Export credit agency Atradius DSB, which provides export insurances on behalf of the Dutch state, insured fossil fuel-related projects with a total value of € 7.3 billion in the period 2012-2015. This is two-thirds of its total insured value for that same period.

http://www.bothends.org/en/Publications/document/184/Paris-Proof-Export-Support-...


EDC’s response to alleged abuse in Colombian oilfields highlights deficits in due diligence

(Above Ground, Ottawa, 14 June 2017) Our latest correspondence with Export Development Canada (EDC) about the impacts in Colombia of two oil companies it financed highlights our longstanding concerns about the adequacy and transparency of the agency’s human rights due diligence practices. Last fall, following the release of a report documenting serious human rights abuses associated with the operations of EDC clients Pacific Exploration & Production and Ecopetrol in Colombia’s Rubiales and Quifa oilfields, we joined the report authors[1] in writing to EDC to express our concern. We asked the agency whether it was aware of the substantial risks associated with oil development in the region when it decided to finance the two companies, and how it would respond to the reported violations of indigenous, labour and environmental rights connected to its clients’ activities.[2] Export Development Canada’s letter of reply neglected to provide any substantive answer to these questions. As we note in our response to EDC, it remains unclear how the agency will address reported abuses associated with its clients’ activities — including the violation by Pacific E&P of Colombian law governing consultation with indigenous peoples, as determined by a 2015 court ruling. It also remains unclear how EDC will ensure that its clients remediate the harms caused, provide redress, and prevent their operations from heightening the serious risks to local community leaders who’ve spoken out critically about the companies’ activities and now face death threats.




New database reveals world’s biggest coal plant developers

(Banktrack, Berlin 29 June 2017) The environmental NGO urgewald and its partners have revealed which companies are at the forefront of plans to expand the world’s coal-fired power capacity by a staggering 42.8%. urgewald’s previous in-depth research played a key role in initiating the coal divestment actions of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund and the insurance company Allianz.

http://mailchi.mp/banktrack/press-release-new-database-reveals-worlds-biggest-co...


Kuwait Seals US$6.25bn Loan in Largest ECA-Backed Corporate Transaction Ever

(Bonds & Loans, London, 13 June 2017) Kuwait National Petroleum Company’s (KNPC) US$6.245bn ECA-backed loan includes plans to modernise the Mina Al Ahmadi oil refinery located in Al Ahmadi Governorate, south of the country, to make it meet stringent environmental requirements.

http://www.bondsloans.com/news/article/1471/case-study-knpc-seals-us625bn-loan-i...


Yamal LNG raises more financing with coverage by Swedish and German ECAs

(Your Oil & Gas News, Edinburgh, 1 June 2017) Yamal LNG announced the signing of agreements with several European banks, inter alia Raiffeisen Bank International AG and Intesa Sanpaolo for up to 425 million with insurance coverage provided by the Swedish export credit agency EKN and the German export credit agency Euler Hermes. Yamal LNG has previously received financing from the National Welfare Fund of Russia, signed agreements on credit lines with Sberbank and Gazprombank, as well as with the China Development Bank and the Export-Import Bank of China, the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and the bank Intesa Sanpaolo with insurance coverage by the Italian export credit agency SACE and the French export credit agency COFACE. In June 2015 WWF Russia noted that the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment of the project, while complying with the best Russian practices were not complete regarding a number of issues and that certain ESIA strategic conclusions required additional discussions and consultations.

http://www.youroilandgasnews.com/yamal+lng+raised+financing+with+insurance+cover...


Italy's Eni signs LNG deal in Mozambique with ECA support

(Reuters, Maputo, 1 June 2017) Italian energy company Eni signed an $8 billion deal on Thursday to develop a gas field off the coast of Mozambique, the first of a series of projects that could transform the poor African nation into a major energy supplier to Asia. Developing the Coral South field requires building six subsea wells connected to a floating facility capable of producing about 3.4 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per year. Eni said project finance would fund 60 percent of the cost of building the floating LNG facility, while the financing agreement has been subscribed by 15 major international banks and guaranteed by five export credit agencies [Export-Import Bank of China, Coface of France, Export-Import Bank of Korea (Kexim), Korea Trade Insurance Corporation, and SACE of Italy] The floating LNG platform will be built in South Korea by a consortium led by Samsung Heavy and including France’s Technip and Japan’s JGC.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-eni-mozambique-idUSKBN18S6AW


EXIM Banks of India and Korea sign MOU for export credit of USD 9 billion

(OpenGovAsia, Singapore, 16 June 2017) The Export-Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank) and the Export-Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM) have signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoU) for export credit of USD 9 billion to support infrastructural development in India and for the supply of goods and services as part of projects in third countries.

http://www.opengovasia.com/articles/7712-exim-banks-of-india-and-korea-sign-mou-...


Boeing strikes deal with Italian export credit agency in lieu of Ex-Im Bank

(Seeking Alpha, Ra'Anana Settlement Israel, 31 May 2017) Boeing has sealed a deal for Italy's export credit agency to provide an initial $1.25B/year in guarantees for jetliner sales, partly to fill the void left by the U.S. Export-Import Bank, which has been restricted since July 2015 when some lawmakers blocked the appointment of a new board. Dow Jones reports that the new agreement with Italy's Sace is the first between Boeing and an overseas export credit agency and provides a template for the company to secure similar deals with other countries that supply large parts of its jetliners.

https://seekingalpha.com/news/3270788-boeing-strikes-deal-italian-export-credit-...


Trump sends Export-Import Bank nominees to Senate

(Defense News, Washington, 20 June 2017) U.S. President Donald Trump has formally nominated former members of Congress, Scott Garrett and Spencer Bachus, to two vacant positions on the U.S. Export-Import bank as expected, a win for the defense and aerospace sector.  Trump announced the move in April — a reversal after calling the federal government’s export credit agency “excess baggage” in 2015. Though the Heritage Foundation and some free-market conservatives have criticized the Ex-Im Bank as subsidizing foreign competitors of U.S. firms, the Aerospace Industries Association, touted it as vital to small- and medium-size companies. Among the largest export beneficiaries of the bank’s financial assistance have been Boeing and General Electric, which have overseas customers that use the agencies' government-backed loans to buy their products.

http://www.defensenews.com/articles/trump-sends-export-import-bank-nominees-to-s...


Iran ECA Finance Talks Making Headway

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 19 June 2017) Iran has held negotiations with Italy’s Medibank and SACE export guarantee for €2 billion ($2.24 billion), Exim Bank of China for $30 billion, China Development Bank for $15 billion, Korea Export–Import Bank for $8 billion and Korea Trade Insurance Corporation for $5 billion to receive foreign financing. Other parties involved in finance negotiations with Iran include Japanese Nippon Export and Investment Insurance and the Japanese Ministry of Finance for $10 billion, the Japan International Cooperation Agency for €1.2 billion ($1.34 billion), Russian Ministry of Economic Development for €5 billion ($5.6 billion) and the Norwegian Guarantee Institute for Export Credits for €1 billion ($1.1 billion). Euler Hermes of Germany is also interested in covering investments in Iran. However, a lack of full-fledged banking ties between Iran and Europe is preventing the complete benefits of the German sovereign guarantee to be felt by Iran.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/economy-business-and-markets/66707/iran-fi...


Madagascar is Afreximbank’s Newest Participating State

(Afreximbank Cairo, 26 June 2017) Madagascar has become the latest country to join the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) as a participating state. Membership of the Bank gives Madagascar automatic access to the full range of products and facilities offered by Afreximbank, including trade finance facilities, project finance services, trade information and advisory services, support in the development of a local content policy and assistance in developing and implementing industrial parks and special economic zones.

https://afreximbank.com/madagascar-is-afreximbanks-newest-participating-state/


What's New May 2017

"What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Indonesian Community Reps File Cirebon Coal Plant Objections with JIBC

(Friends of the Earth Japan, Tokyo, 24 May 2017) On May 24, 2017, two Indonesian community representatives affected by the JIBC supported Cirebon Coal-fired Power Plant Project in West Java arrived in Japan and handed their objections to the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) with respect to the expansion of the Unit 2 power plant (1,000 MW). At the same time, Indonesian and Japanese NGOs filed their complaints with the Japanese National Contact Point (NCP) under the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (MNEs). Japanese public and private sectors, including Marubeni and JERA as investors, have pushed through the project despite already serious damages to the livelihoods of the local community and the April 19 revocation of its environmental permit by the District Court in Bandung.

http://www.foejapan.org/en/aid/170524.html


World Coal: IEA CCC Report - Global financing for coal power goes East

(World Coal, Surrey, 19 May 2017) Development finance is essential to help the advancement and empowerment of low and middle income economies. But, past announcements by multilateral development banks restricting finance for greenfield coal plants cast doubts on future funding. This approach to coal investments spread to other development agencies and also became a foundation for the rules governing OECD export credits (pdf). A new report from the IEA Clean Coal Centre by Paul Baruya, Trends in international lending for coal-fired power plants, examines the implications of these announcements and explores the roles and policies of different financial institutions. In 2014 alone, US$152 billion of funding was received by the coal power and mining sectors from such institutions. Of this total, just US$9 billion was provided by multilateral development banks and export credit agencies. Thus these publicly financed institutions make a minor contribution to direct funding of coal projects, although they maintain a role in attracting commercial funding to higher risk projects.

https://www.worldcoal.com/power/19052017/iea-ccc-global-financing-for-coal-power...


Turkey in 'final phase' of secretive Saudi arms export deal

(Defense News, Ankara, 3 May 2017) Turkey’s defense and procurement officials are expecting to finalize a large defense export contract with Saudi Arabia, but its contents will be kept top secret. Turkish Defence Minister Fikri Isik has said the defense export contract with Saudi Arabia will be the largest-ever single export deal for the Turkish industry...  Turkey, he said, would launch a new export lending mechanism outside the scope of Eximbank loans in order to finance Turkish exports. Eximbank is a state-owned export credit bank in Turkey. The Minister said his government was working on a broad plan to boost Turkish defense and aerospace exports. He admitted that financing was often a major problem for potential markets.

http://www.defensenews.com/articles/turkey-in-final-phase-of-secretive-saudi-exp...


N.J. critic of Export-Import Bank appointed to overhaul federal credit agency

(National Public Radio Newsworks, Delaware, 16 May 2017) Republicans who want to disband the Export-Import Bank of the United States were heartened during the presidential campaign when candidate Donald Trump indicated he would kill it if he were elected president. Now, President Trump said he supports the bank and the micro-financing it gives U.S. companies. Republican Ryan Costello and other lawmakers from the Delaware Valley are in that corner as well, but are now perplexed by the President's tapping of former U.S. Rep. Scott Garrett to serve on the  bank's board. Garrett, a founding member of the very conservative House Freedom Caucus, has long been a critic of the bank — even voting against its reauthorization. Democrats fear Garrett and Trump are trying to undermine the bank from within. Democrat Brendan Boyle said it's difficult to discern whether Trump is being devious or if he just doled out a favor to a loyalist who recently lost a bid for re-election. "It could just be that there's no forethought in this whatsoever,” Boyle said.

http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/local//item/103984-nj-critic-of-export-import...


Airbus tightens fraud controls

(Air Transport World, Arlington, 22 May 2017) Airbus has established a new independent compliance review panel (ICRP) to ensure “irreproachable” behavior, following allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption in its civil aviation business. The move follows an investigation by the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and France’s Parquet National Financier (PNF), after Airbus self-disclosed misstatements and omissions found a year ago. Revelations started emerging in April 2016, when the UK Export Finance (UKEF), Britain’s export credit agency (ECA), placed a temporary hold on all guarantees and credit export support of Airbus products. Coface, the French ECA, and Euler Hermes, the German ECA, followed within days. The probe is focused on alleged misuse of third-party agents and European export credit by Airbus.

http://atwonline.com/manufacturers/airbus-tightens-fraud-controls


Iran in talks with UK export credit agency over jetliner export funding

(Reuters, Paris, 4 May 2017) Iran is in talks with Britain's export credit agency to facilitate the financing of aircraft sales to state airline IranAir as part of its pact with world powers to lift sanctions over its nuclear program, a senior Iranian official said. IranAir's plan to buy more than 180 jets from Airbus and Boeing is the most visible economic deal on the table after major powers last year lifted most sanctions on Iran in return for restrictions on its nuclear activities. But financing for the purchases has been hard to secure because most Western banks are holding back, concerned about the future of the 2015 agreement after U.S. President Donald Trump called it a bad deal and ordered a review. So far, IranAir has taken delivery of just three Airbus jets, for which it paid cash, industry sources say. Meanwhile, other news reports say that Theresa May’s snap decision to hold general elections in June discourages Britain’s export credit arm from taking defining decisions affecting foreign policy during such a critical time. The government is also likely to postpone dealing with the issue until after the elections. Meanwhile, the Iranian government was under immense pressure to show results of the Nuclear Deal before the country’s elections in May. The Slovakian and Finnish ECAs have also signed deals with Iran.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-britain-financing-exclusive-idUSKBN1800VW


China's Export Credit Agency Covering Iran Investment

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 9 May 2017) China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation (Sinosure) will provide export insurance for Chinese construction and production investments in Iran. According to a recently signed Meorandum of Understanding, the Chinese export credit agency will insure state-owned and private Chinese companies that intend to invest in Iranian projects, enabling them to use new lines of credit, particularly for the export of high-value added goods from China. Prior to this, the entity had provided credit lines and export insurance for mining and refinery projects in Iran.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/economy-business-and-markets/64046/chinas-...


Like spring weather, Delta’s positions on EXIM change quickly and dramatically

(eTurbo News, Hawaii, 11 May 2017) A recent high-profile example of Delta’s advocacy agility was its position on export credit financing and reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank (EXIM). Delta opposed it before it supported it. In the beginning, Delta was a leading voice opposing reauthorization of the EXIM. It was a visible and vocal member of the chorus decrying export credit financing as inherently bad public policy and crony capitalism. Delta claimed it was chased out of the US-India market by EXIM lending to Air India to purchase Boeing 787 Dreamliners. Simultaneously, it spent millions of dollars repeatedly suing EXIM seeking to use the courts to block guarantees for Air India’s 787s. Then Delta pivoted. It claimed it never opposed export credit financing and, after waging a scorched earth lobbying campaign against EXIM, it in fact was prepared to support its reauthorization provided the legislation included an anticompetitive carve-out prohibiting widebody financing for state-owned carriers.

https://www.eturbonews.com/154422/like-spring-weather-deltas-positions-change-qu...


State Bank of India could fund Gautam Adani’s coal mine in Australia

(National Herald, New Delhi, 9 May 2017) Australia's Market Forces environmental finance group has warned that Indian businessman Gautam Adani could turn to the Indian government to get his $21 billion coal mine funded, as Australian and international investors increasingly pull out of the project due to environmental concerns. "The (funding) model now looks like a combination of North Australia Infrastructure Funding (NAIF) funding, State Bank of India (SBI) and foreign export credit providing the bulk of the debt. The remainder would likely rely heavily on Indian commercial banks that Adani has a close relationship with, and some other foreign commercial banks that have not yet ruled out finance," Julien Vincent, the Executive Director at Market Forces, told National Herald, replying to an emailed questionnaire. Taxpayers in Australia and India are most likely to fill the funding gap that Adani is experiencing, Vincent said.

https://www.nationalheraldindia.com/news/2017/05/09/sbi-could-fund-gautam-adanis...


Kenya’s stake in pan African ECA diluted

(The Star, Nairobi, 8 May 017) Kenya's shareholding in African Trade Insurance Agency has been marginally diluted following entry of four new investors, the largely political risk and investment guarantee firm has said. Chief executive George Otieno said Kenya's stake has dropped to about 12 per cent from 15 per cent. This was after Ethiopia and Zimbabwe joined the pan-African investment and commercial risk insurance provider last year, while Ivory Coast came on board last month. UK’s national export credit agency, UK Export Finance, has also acquired undisclosed stake in ATI, joining African Development Bank and Italian Export Credit Agency as non-state shareholders. “Kenya, however, remains the single largest shareholder in ATI and by some measure the single biggest beneficiary of ATI cover since its inception,” ATI’s chief underwriting officer John Lentaigne said. “We have investments in Kenya equivalent to 15 per cent (about Sh1.08 trillion) of the current GDP (about Sh7.2 trillion) since its (ATI's) inception.” The company was formed by seven African countries, with Kenya as single largest shareholder, in 2001 but started operating fully in 2003. The agency was financially and technically supported by the World Bank Group during its formation.

http://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2017/05/08/kenyas-stake-in-pan-african-firm-dilut...


US Trade Finance for Cuba ‘Much Further Down the Road’ says Ex-Im Bank Officer

(Sputnik News, Washington, 15 May 2017) Trade finance to Cuba is not expected in the near future because of the quantity of work that needs to be completed, including the country's payments due to export credit agencies, US Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im) Business Development Officer Kate Bishop told Sputnik on Monday. "It looks like trade restrictions are easing, but trade finance, which is where we come in, I think that would be much further down the road before it would even be considered," Bishop said on the sidelines of the Fifth Annual Doing Business with the BRICS Conference on Monday.

https://sputniknews.com/business/201705151053637579-us-trade-cuba-exim/


What's New April 2017

"What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • In policy reversal Trump names new Ex-Im president
  • Don't fund South African coal mine, activists plead with Australian export credit agency
  • JBIC Must Immediately Review and Repeal its Loan Agreement for Illegal Coal Project
  • German, Swedish, Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Italian and French ECAs support Yamal LNG project
  • Brazil will offer export credit-line for defence products
  • Ex-Im Bank of India confirms $1.6bn loan for Rampal coal plant to bankroll Sundarbans destruction
  • EDC Signals Millions in New Loans for India with the Opening of Singapore Branch
  • Canada's EDC and UK UKEF eye Philippine growth and infrastructure
  • Alba secures $700m in export credit financing
  • Iran, Portugal ECAs Sign Cooperation Deal

In policy reversal Trump names new Ex-Im president

(Deutsche Welle, Washington, 15 April 2017) US President Trump has named Scott Garrett, a conservative Republican former lawmaker, to head the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank. Garrett voted to close the official US export credit agency when he was a member of Congress. Trump also named Spencer Bachus, a Republican former congressman from Alabama, to be a member of the Ex-Im board of directors. During last year's presidential election campaign, Trump dismissed the bank as "unnecessary." He alleged in August that "it's sort of a featherbedding for politicians and others, and a few companies." On April 12th, in comments reported by the Wall Street Journal, Trump announced a policy change on Ex-Im, saying: "Actually, it's a very good thing. And it actually makes money, it could make a lot of money." Garrett, a New Jersey Republican, served seven terms in the House of Representatives and voted in 2012 and 2015 against renewing the Ex-Im charter. A founding member of the Freedom Caucus and reported to have made a series of anti-gay remarks, Garrett was defeated in the November elections. Speaking about Ex-Im at a congressional hearing in 2014, Garrett said "when you mix big corporations and taxpayer-backed guarantees, you get a little something that looks an awful like crony capitalism." In a tweet in October 2015, Garrett described the bank as a "corporate welfare program."

http://www.dw.com/en/in-policy-reversal-president-trump-names-new-president-for-...


Don't fund South African coal mine, activists plead with Australian export credit agency

(Guardian, London, 6 April 2017) Environmental action groups including Greenpeace, Oxfam and GetUp have signed an open letter to Australia’s export credit agency asking it not to fund a controversial new coal mine. The groups say a loan to the proposed Resgen Boikarabelo mine in South Africa will lead to human rights abuses and hinder Australia’s Paris commitment to keep global warming below 2C. The open letter to the Efic Board of Directors from civil society organizations led by ActionAid and Jubilee Australia, and representing some 2 million Australians all together, expressed their belief that by funding this coal mine, Efic is at risk of funding human rights abuses in South Africa.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jan/17/australia-export-credit-a...


JBIC Must Immediately Review and Repeal its Loan Agreement for Illegal Indonesian Coal Project

(Friends of the Earth Japan, Tokyo, 19 April 2017) Following objections from local affected villagers, on April 19th the regional court in Bandung, West Java revoked the environmental permit for the 1000MW Cirebon coal-fired power plant expansion plan known as Cirebon 2 (which Marubeni and JERA invested in). The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) had concluded a loan agreement for Cirebon 2 on April 18, the day immediately before the court verdict was due. JBIC now must sincerely take into account the local villagers’ rights and the judicial decision in the host country. JIBC must immediately review and repeal its decision to provide financing for Cirebon 2, as the project is illegal according to local law and in violation of the “JBIC Guidelines for Confirmation of Environmental and Social Considerations” (Guidelines) which require “the compliance with environmental laws of the host nation and local governments concerned” and “the submission of environmental permit certificates issued by the host governments.”

http://www.foejapan.org/en/aid/170419.html


German, Swedish, Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Italian and French ECAs support Yamal LNG project

(Kyiv Post, Moscow, 21 April 2017) The German and Swedish export credit agencies have decided to take part in the Yamal LNG project, Novatek CEO Leonid Mikhelson said during the annual general meeting of shareholders. The cost of the project is $27 billion. Yamal LNG has signed credit agreements for the equivalent of $12 billion with China Development Bank (CDB) and the Export and Import Bank of China (CEXIM), and the equivalent of $4 billion with Gazprombank and Sberbank. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) will provide €200 million, and Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo will provide €750 million under coverage from Italian export credit agency Sace and France’s Coface (amounting to €350 million. In addition, Yamal LNG received the equivalent of $2.4 billion from Russia’s National Welfare Fund (NWF). WWF Russia in 2015 noted that the situations on Sakhalin Island, the Yamal Peninsula fields (and, apparently, in the Gydansky Peninsula in future) failed to comply with Item 8.4 of the Environmental Standards for Operations of Oil and Gas Companies Acting in Russia developed in 2004 by non-governmental nature conservation organizations.

https://www.kyivpost.com/russia/mikhelson-german-swedish-export-credit-agencies-...


Brazil will offer export credit-line for defence products

(QUWA, San Francisco, 6 April 2017) Brazil will offer a credit-line to overseas customers of its defence products. The announcement was made by the President of the National Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES), Maria Sílvia Bastos Marques, at LAAD 2017, which is taking place at Rio de Janeiro. As per the Brazilian Ministry of Defence’s press release, current schemes are done on an ad hoc basis, but this formal mechanism will coordinate with each of Brazil’s ministries and will boost the competitiveness of the Brazilian defence industry. For example, there is a Defence Group in the Foreign Trade Chamber.
http://quwa.org/2017/04/06/brazil-will-offer-credit-line-defence-exports


Ex-Im Bank of India confirms $1.6bn loan for Rampal coal plant to bankroll Sundarbans destruction

(BankTrack, Nijmegen, 11 April 2017) Ex-Im Bank of India’s confirmation today that it is providing a $1.6 billion loan to Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company (BIFPCL) for development of the Rampal coal plant in Bangladesh has been strongly criticised by BankTrack. Johan Frijns, director of BankTrack, said: “Ex-Im India’s decision to bankroll the massive Rampal coal plant in Bangladesh, situated right next to the Sundarbans mangrove forest, comes packaged with the claims that ‘state of the art technologies have been selected for this project’, and that ‘all environment concerns related to the project have been addressed’. Yet such statements are completely at odds with the deep concerns held by the Bangladeshi population and the international public, and fly in the face of overwhelming expert opinion to the contrary. Resistance is now set to grow further against the project promoters and the bank.

https://www.banktrack.org/news/exim_bank_of_india_confirms_1_6bn_loan_for_rampal...


EDC Signals Millions in New Loans for India with the Opening of Singapore Branch

(Business Wire, Mumbai, 2 April 2017) Export Development Canada today announced its new and first global branch outside of Canada, in Singapore. “EDC’s new branch can process transactions in real time for Indian companies, eliminating the previous 12 hour delay to connect back to our financing team in Canada,” says Bill Brown, Regional Vice-President, Asia, EDC. “EDC’s financial services are now offered more quickly and effectively, which will significantly benefit Indian companies.” The new Singapore branch is expected to play an important role in doubling EDC’s loan bookings by 2021, when it hopes to be providing over USD 4 billion in new commercial financing annually.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/export-development-canada-signals-millions-013000...


Canada's EDC and UK UKEF eye Philippine growth and infrastructure

(Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila, 24 April 2017) As offers of development funding from China and Japan pour in, Canada also wants a bigger piece of the Philippine growth story as its export credit agency Export Development Canada (EDC) seeks more opportunities to fund infrastructure projects and other key industries. In an e-mail interview with the Inquirer, EDC regional vice president for Asia international business development William Brown said EDC was anticipating more Canadian businesses wanting to invest and sell more products to the Philippines as Canadian exporters and investors seek opportunities in emerging markets. EDC recently opened a branch in Singapore to function as its financing hub in Asia. The United Kingdom has offered the Philippines a chance to tap its £4.5-billion export-import facility as a financing option for the Duterte Administration’s massive infrastructure program, the Department of Finance (DoF) said over the weekend.

https://business.inquirer.net/228257/canada-export-bank-eyes-ph


Alba secures $700m in export credit financing

(Trade Arabia, Manama, 16 April 017) Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), a leading aluminium smelter, has secured commitments of about $700 million from Export Credit Agency (ECA) supported facilities to finance Line 6 Expansion project. The facilities are made-up of a dual tranche of c. $310 million and c. EUR315 million ($334 million) SERV Guaranteed Export Credit and c. EUR50 million Euler Herms Guaranteed Export Credit. The SERV-backed facility will fund the company’s Power Station 5 (PS5) wherein General Electric (GE), EPC contractor, will provide three 9HA gas turbines, three steam turbines and three heat recovery steam generators (HRSGs).

https://www.tradearabia.com/index.php?%2Fnews%2FIND_323517_html=


Iran, Portugal ECAs Sign Cooperation Deal

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 20 April 2017) Export Guarantee Fund of Iran (EGFI) and Portugal’s private insurance firm COSEC signed a memorandum of understanding in Tehran on Tuesday to expand cooperation. The two entities agreed to expand cooperation in co-insurance, reinsurance, credit assessment, claims prevention and recovery of debts that help the exporters of both countries, EGFI reported in a press release. The private insurance COSEC has the mandate to manage the official export credit guarantee scheme on behalf of the Portuguese government. Since the lifting of sanctions, EGFI has been expanding ties with various ECAs and has held talks with institutions across the world, including the United Kingdom Export Finance, Japanese Nippon Export, Investment Insurance Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India, South Korea’s K-Sure and Italy’s SACE. Iran-Portugal trade stood at $1.76 million during the 10 months to January 20, 2017, Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Mines’ website reported.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/economy-business-and-markets/62804/iran-po...


What's New March 2017

"What's New!" is a periodic update to keep you informed of the latest on the ECA Watch website. What's New! features a wide range of materials related to the reform of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) including NGO publications and releases, news articles, commentaries and announcements about the policies and practices of ECAs and ECA-financed projects world-wide.

If you would like to receive "What's New!" simply add your e-mail to the ECA-Action list at www.eca-watch.org today! Questions?

Email info-at-eca-watch.org

See all "What's New!" updates since 2005 here.

  • 280 CSOs from 47 Countries Call on Japanese Government to Reject Support for Indonesian Coal Plants
  • France Joins UK in Airbus Fraud Investigation
  • EC publishes Annual Activity Report on Export Credits
  • Ex-Im Bank Critics Are Undermining Trump's Trade Strategy
  • S. Korean & Chinese ECAs to support hydroelectric dams in Iran
  • Norway export credit institute sees Iran trade opportunity
  • Export credit funds to finance Adani's Australian coal mine project
  • Law firm helps secure Norwegian ECA US$100m facility for massive offshore oil project
  • Uganda: UK Doubles Export Funding to Uganda
  • UK commits US$1.2 billion for funding development projects in Peru
  • Islamic Development Bank sets out roadmap to promote Arab-African trade
  • Export credit to boost Middle East lending
  • Botswana hosts global credit insurance conference
  • South Sudan officially joins Afrexibank
  • Saab & BAE Systems table export credit for Malaysia fighter bid
  • World Bank Project Aims to Help Mongolia Access Export Credits

280 CSOs from 47 Countries Call on Japanese Government to Reject Support for Indonesian Coal Plants

(FOE Japan, Tokyo, 27 March 2017) On March 23, Indonesian and Japanese CSOs submitted an international petition signed by 280 CSOs from 47 countries to the Japanese government, calling on JBIC and JICA not to finance the Cirebon expansion coal-fired power plant (1,000 MW) and the Indramayu expansion coal-fired power plant (1,000 MW), both located in West Java, Indonesia.

http://www.foejapan.org/en/aid/170323.html


France Joins UK in Airbus Fraud Investigation

(AI News, Midland Park, 6 March 2017) France’s Parquet National Financier has joined the UK Serious Fraud Office in an investigation into allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption in the civil aviation business of Airbus Group...  The UK agency launched its official investigation last August, following months of deliberation over whether or not to pursue charges related to the manufacturer’s failure to reveal the identity of some intermediaries in applications for export credit financing for certain airline customers... Last April Airbus issued a statement acknowledging it notified the SFO of “certain inaccuracies” in the applications following an internal investigation and that an interruption in UK export funding would likely result. At the time it said expected no interruption in financing from the export credit agencies in France and Germany—the other European countries in which it builds most of its components and assembles airplanes. However, those countries subsequently cut off funding as well in cooperation with the UK agency. Export credit accounted for some 6 percent of funding for Airbus airliners in 2015 and, due to the investigation, virtually none last year. Despite these investigations, Airbus has stated that it "expects to have access to European export credit financing on a 'case by case' basis in 2017"

http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/air-transport/2017-03-16/france-joins-uk-...


EC publishes Annual Activity Report on Export Credits

(European Comission, Brussels, 2 February 2017) The European Commission in February 2017 published its "annual" report on the activities of 21 member state's official Export Credit Agencies for the year 2014. ECA Watch notes that, in addition to the two year delay in its issue, the report provides an incomplete and in some respects misleading picture of the activies of official EU ECAs, which we are now reviewing and will comment on.

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX%3A52017DC0067


Ex-Im Bank Critics Are Undermining Trump's Trade Strategy

(Forbes, Arlington, 3 March 2017) Loren Thompson of the centre-right Lexington Institute comments on "the dwindling band of Export-Import Bank critics who think America should be the only major trading nation without an export credit agency." He notes that while Ex-Im actually make a profit, most national ECAs actually do susidize national exporters, i.e. distort markets. An interesting view into the ideological battles currently underway in Washington.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/lorenthompson/2017/03/03/ex-im-bank-critics-are-und...


S. Korean & Chinese ECAs to support hydroelectric dams in Iran

(Financial Tribune, Tehran, 14 March 2017) Multibillion-dollar deals have been signed with East Asian companies to develop dam infrastructure in Iran, including a $1.7 billion agreement with South Korea for developing the Bakhtiari hydroelectric dam and a $341 million Sinosure credit line for an hydroelectric dam in the western Lorestan Province as well as an offer of a €290 million Sinosure credit line for Chamshir hydroelectric dam in Kohgiluyeh - Boyer Ahmad Province.

https://financialtribune.com/articles/energy/61409/s-koreans-chinese-companies-t...


Norway export credit institute sees Iran trade opportunity

(IranOilGas, Tehran, 4 March 2017) Officials from the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran and Norwegian Guarantee Institute for Export Credits (GIEK) discussed expansion of ties during a meeting held in Tehran... Commenting on Norway’s $1 billion credit line for covering trade with Iran, Wenche Nistad, GIEK’s chief executive, said: “The plan is still in its early phases; more time is needed for starting such projects as we need to learn more about each other, know more about doing business with Iran and get familiar with Iran’s banking system.”

http://www.iranoilgas.com/news/details?id=17271&title=Norway%20export%20credit%2...


Export credit funds to finance Adani's Australian coal mine project

(Business Standard, New Delhi, 20 March 2017) Leading global financers, export credit funds from China and Korea and international banks which earlier refused to fund the Carmichael coal mine project of the Adani Group are in talks with the Indian conglomerate to fund the project. The company has yet again rubbished the opposition from the climate groups saying this will not impact the funding for the project.

https://www.pressreader.com/india/business-standard/20170320/281608125251170


Law firm helps secure Norwegian ECA US$100m facility for massive Australian offshore oil project

(Austral Asian Lawyer, St. Leonards NSW, 15 March 2017) Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised on a US$100 mn term loan and guarantee facility which will be used by Woodside for its offshore operations in Western Australia. The facility has export credit support provided by DNB Bank ASA and the Norwegian Export Credit Agencies (ECA)... NRF advised Eksportkreditt Norge AS as lender; DNB Bank ASA as agent and arranger, ECA co-ordinator and ECA guarantor; and Norway’s Guarantee Institute for Export Credits (GIEK) as ECA guarantor on the loan and guarantee facility. The facility will be used to support the delivery of subsea equipment for installation on the seabed to support Woodside’s $1.9bn Greater Enfield project, an offshore oil project which will include up to 14 wells, according to projectconnect.com.au.

http://www.australasianlawyer.com.au/news/nrf-helps-secure-us100m-facility-for-m...


Uganda: UK Doubles Export Funding to Uganda

(All Africa News, Kampala, 27 March 2017) The British government has announced a major increase in the export credit for Uganda, from £300 million (Shs1.35 trillion) to £600 million (Shs2.7 trillion). The new export finance support is made available through UK Export Finance (UKEF), the UK Government's export credit agency which provides competitive finance for UK exports.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201703270339.html


UK commits US$1.2 billion for funding development projects in Peru

(Andina, Lima, 4 March 2017) The United Kingdom will provide US$1.2 billion to Peru to finance infrastructure projects in favor of development, British Ambassador to Lima Anwar Choudhury announced on Friday. Resources will be provided by UK Export Finance (UKEF), the bloc's export credit agency, to finance exports of UK products and services in infrastructure, energy and sanitation sectors, among others. In addition, UKEF will provide an additional US$200 million in funding for the development of projects carried out in cooperation with the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF).

http://www.andina.com.pe/Ingles/noticia-uk-commits-12-billion-for-funding-develo...


Islamic Development Bank sets out roadmap to promote Arab-African trade

(Arab News, Riyadh, 5 March 2017) The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) is developing a roadmap to strengthen Arab-African trade over the next three years, according to Hakim Elwaer, IDB’s official spokesman... At a forum held in Rabat last month it was noted that IDB’s support for development programs and infrastructure projects in Africa has reached more than $43 billion, which included funding for projects in infrastructure. IDB President Bandar Hajjar added that the volume of trade financing granted to Arab and African member countries since the establishment of the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), which is IDB’s trade financing arm, has reached about $15 billion.

http://www.arabnews.com/node/1063406/saudi-arabia


Export credit to boost Middle East lending

(Bloomberg, Dubai, 2 March 2017)  Middle East borrowers are increasingly using loans backed by export credit agencies to fund projects as tightening liquidity makes conventional borrowing more expensive and difficult to secure, according to Societe Generale SA. France’s second-largest bank by market value is in talks with governments, state-owned and private companies for about twelve loans backed by ECAs for projects including in the energy and oil industries in the Middle East, Richad Soundardjee, regional chief executive officer, said in an interview in Dubai. The lender more than doubled the number of ECA backed loans it helped raise last year, compared with 2015, he said, without revealing the number of loans.

https://www.bloombergquint.com/business/2017/03/08/societe-generale-sees-export-...


Botswana hosts global credit insurance conference

(Mmegi Online, Gabarone, 23 March 2017) The Botswana Export Credit Insurance (BECI) will for the first time host the annual meeting of international credit insurers in Kasane next month. The event, called the Prague Club Committee (PCC) spring meeting, will see around 50 senior participants from 20 international members of the Berne Union gather to discuss political risk, trade finance and credit insurance... The meeting [will] cast a spotlight on Botswana with delegates expected to explore the culture, heritage and natural environment across a range of thrilling excursions organised alongside the conference.

http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?aid=67628&dir=2017/march/23


South Sudan officially joins Afrexibank

(BizNis Africa, Johannesburg, 29 March 2017) South Sudan, Africa’s youngest country, has become the latest country to join the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) as a participating state... Dr. Benedict Oramah, President of Afreximbank, stated that membership of the Bank would give South Sudan automatic access to the full range of products and facilities offered by Afreximbank, including trade finance facilities, project finance services, trade information and advisory services, support in the development of a local content policy and assistance in developing and implementing industrial parks and special economic zones... Participating states become shareholders when they acquire shares in the Bank. Afreximbank shareholders are a mix of public and private entities divided into four classes and consist of African governments, central banks, regional and sub-regional institutions, private investors and financial institutions, as well as non-African financial institutions, export credit agencies and private investors.

https://www.biznisafrica.co.za/south-sudan-officially-joins-afreximbank/


Saab & BAE Systems table export credit for Malaysia fighter bid

(QUWA, Islamabad, 22 March 2017) With the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) seeking 18 next-generation multi-role fighters to supplant its MiG-29, leading aviation vendors are beginning to actively position their respective platforms. IHS Jane’s and Shepard Media report that Saab and BAE Systems are willing to provide credit or financing terms for the JAS-39 Gripen and Eurofighter Typhoon, respectively... Malaysia’s defence procurement strategy is tailored for diversification, which results in purchases from Eastern and Western vendors. One need only look at the Royal Malaysian Navy’s (RMN) recent purchases from France (Scorpene-class submarines and Gowind-class frigates) and China (Littoral Mission Ships).

http://quwa.org/2017/03/22/saab-bae-systems-table-export-credit-malaysia-fighter...


World Bank Project Aims to Help Mongolia Access Export Credits

(Military News, Ulaanbaatar, 24 March 2017) The Mongolia Ministry of Finance and the World Bank today launched the Export Development Project aimed to help small- and medium-sized enterprises in non-minerals sectors strengthen their export capabilities and boost their access to export markets. The project, to be implemented by the government of Mongolia in the next 4 ½ years, will support Mongolia’s economic diversification by providing those firms with training, matching grants and access to export credit-insurance products.

http://www.military-technologies.net/2017/03/24/world-bank-project-aims-to-help-...


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