Welcome to ECA Watch

Export credit agences provide government-backed loans, guarantees and insurance to corporations working internationally in some of the most volatile, controversial and damaging industries on the planet.

Shrouded in mystery, ECAs provide financial backing for risky projects that might never otherwise get off the ground. They are a major source of national debt in developing countries.

ECA Watch is a network of NGOs from around the world. We come together to campaign for ECA reform - better transparency, accountability, and respect for environmental standards and human rights.

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What's New for January 2024

"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

  • Biden Administration Faces Pushback on Another Gas Project, This Time Overseas
  • JBIC financing for two gas power projects in Mexico would violate the G7 agreement
  • Amid Corruption Charges, Groups Demand EXIM Halt Payments to Trafigur
  • ECAs support €1.08 billion green loans for Cadeler
  • UKEF underwrites financing for another section of Turkish high speed rail network
  • Red Sea crisis: Indian shipping costs and times and export credit premiums up
  • Brodies Guides On War Risk Insurance For Ukrainian Exports
  • H2 Green Steel Boden: Complex financing includes Euler Hermes
  • Swedish “Green” Steel Plant Secures $7 Billion in Financing
  • Northvolt gets $5bn green loan for European EV push
  • Petroperú Desperate for Cash Loses $500M SACE Loan Guarantee
  • How to Deal with Sinosure as an Importer
  • European Union readies €300mn ECA pilot
  • UKEF: Taxpayers underwrite French contractor’s Saudi project
  • African tri-nation transport project to start Phase II
  • Belgian ECA Credendo helps expansion of Montevideo Port to Boost Uruguay's Foreign Trade
  • FLASH: US Exim readies for US$2bn domestic financing boom

Biden Administration Faces Pushback on Another Gas Project, This Time Overseas

(New York Times, New York, 26 January 2024) Even as the Biden administration, under pressure from environmentalists, hits pause on its approval of a major natural gas export terminal in the United States, it faces another big gas decision overseas. A $13 billion natural gas export project in Papua New Guinea led by TotalEnergies and Exxon Mobil is on a shortlist of projects set to receive financing from the U.S. Export-Import Bank, or Ex-Im, which supports American businesses around the world.The Papua LNG gas project would join a portfolio of oil and gas projects the bank funds, including an oil refinery in Indonesia and an oil tank project in the Bahamas. The bank is also considering financing an offshore pipeline and natural gas plants in Guyana. Some climate activists see a big contradiction between climate actions the government is taking in the United States versus around the world. “He’s done so much at home,” said Friends of the Earth's Kate DeAngeli, but he “can’t claim to be a climate champion when the U.S. is propping up this fossil fuel infrastructure all over the world.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/01/26/climate/lng-terminals-financing-cp2.html


JBIC financing for two gas power projects in Mexico would violate the G7 agreement

(JACSES, Tokyo, 30 January 2024) The Japan Center for a Sustainable Environment and Society notes that two gas-fired combined cycle power projects in Mexico are now under consideration for financing by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC). One is in San Luis Potosi and the other one in Salamanca. When Japanese NGOs asked the consistency of these two projects with the agreement reached at G7 Elmau Summit to end new public financing for fossil fuel energy, JBIC did not provide specific rationale on its judgment that the policy of the Mexican government is consistent with the 1.5 degree target. If JBIC provides support, it is highly likely that it constitutes a violation of the G7 agreement, thus JBIC should stop consideration for financing. JBIC placed these two projects on its list of projects under consideration for financing on November 2, 2023.

https://jacses.org/en/406/


Amid Corruption Charges, Groups Demand EXIM Halt Payments to Trafigura

(Friends of the Earth, Washington, 23 January 2024) Civil society and environmental groups today requested that the US Export-Import Bank withdraw funding from the Trafigura Group, a major global commodity trader. In December, Bloomberg reported that Trafigura was charged with corruption and bribing elected officials in Angola. In an open letter to EXIM, asking the bank to halt its payment of $400 million to Trafigura, a financing agreement that was approved in July 2023. This letter questions EXIM’s due process in analyzing funding recipients and its method of reconsideration when corruption is revealed. This comes on the heels of both the United States and Swiss governments launching investigations into the company’s affairs. Despite this, EXIM last year gave Trafigura the massive financing of $400 million to purchase liquefied natural gas, a decision the groups charge was made based on flawed environmental damage assessments. EXIM is soon expected to approve $660 million for the Gas to Energy Project in Guyana, despite similar concerns from activists. In 2023 the institution funded nearly $1 billion for overseas oil and gas development, violating President Biden’s 2021 Executive Order.

https://foe.org/news/exim-halt-payments-trafigura/


ECAs support €1.08 billion green loans for Cadeler

(The Asset, Hong Kong, 3 January 2024) Oslo-listed offshore wind turbine installation company Cadeler has raised €1.075 billion (US$1.19 billion) via two syndicated green financing facilities with backing from export credit agencies (ECAs). The revolving facilities will be used to refinance Cadeler and Eneti’s existing debt, as well as finance merger-related costs. Ancillary lines have been set up to support the project-related letter of credit (LC) needs of the company, and term facilities will finance the upgrade of cranes on two of Cadeler’s O-Class offshore installation vessels. The financing for the crane upgrades has ECA backing from the Export and Investment Fund of Denmark (Eifo). A facility amounting to €425 million, which is backed by the China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation (Sinosure), will be used to finance the acquisition of two new X-Class wind turbine installation vessels currently under construction in China.

https://www.theasset.com/article/50681/ecas-support-108-billion-green-loans-for-...


UKEF underwrites financing for another section of Turkish high speed rail network

(Railway Gazette, Sutton, 22 January 2024) The UK government’s export credit agency UKEF has agreed to underwrite a €1·03bn loan arranged by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group for three Turkish companies to construct Turkey’s 140 km long Yerköy – Kayseri route modernisation scheme. UKEF has partnered with export credit agencies from Italy (SACE), which reinsured €249m of the guarantee, Poland’s KUKE, which reinsured €205m, and Austria’s OeKB (€176m). A separate €220m commercial loan from the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment & Export Credit makes the total financing package worth €1·2bn. [This is the third Turkish high-speed railway to be backed by UK Export Finance and its counterparts in Italy, Poland, and Austria. Combined, the projects amount to some 900km of rail. The two others are the Ankara-Izmir and the Mersin-Gaziantep lines.]

https://www.railwaygazette.com/infrastructure/uk-underwrites-financing-for-anoth...


Red Sea crisis: Indian shipping costs and times and export credit premiums up

(Financial Express, Noida, 18 January 2024) An Indian inter-ministerial meeting on Red Sea crisis on Wednesday has asked the Department of Financial Services (DFS) in the finance ministry to monitor the credit requirements of exporters and ensure that credit flows to them are maintained, a senior official said Wednesday. Different reports have said the conflict in the Red Sea is leading to increased shipping costs by 40-60%, insurance premiums by 15-20% and delays of up to 20 days due to rerouting of some ships away from Suez Canal. The cost and turnaround time of shipments have increased as two shipping lines including Maersk have stopped services but volume is not affected, the official said.He said so far there has just been time and cost impact, nothing else. In the rapidly escalating situation in the region the shipping rates on some routes have gone up by six times. Exporters fear that the impact could come in a big way if the situation does not normalise. The government may have to look at alternate routes. On its part the ministry of commerce has asked Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) not to increase the premium on credit insurance and other related services.The insurance covers enable the banks to extend timely and adequate export credit facilities to the exporters. [Around 80% of India’s merchandise trade with Europe passes through the Red Sea and substantial trade with the US also takes this route. Both geographies account for 34% of India’s total exports. The Red Sea strait is vital for 30% of global container traffic and 12% of world trade.]

https://www.financialexpress.com/policy/economy-red-sea-crisis-export-credit-to-...


Brodies Guides On War Risk Insurance For Ukrainian Exports

(USA Herald, New York, 12 January 2024) In a groundbreaking move, Scottish law firm Brodies LLP has steered Ukraine’s Export Credit Agency through uncharted territory, unveiling a novel war risk insurance process to safeguard shipowners and vessel charterers amidst the ongoing conflict with Russia. In a daring legal maneuver, Brodies LLP has strategically advised Ukraine’s Export Credit Agency, paving the way for a groundbreaking war risk insurance process. The initiative aims to fortify shipowners and vessel charterers, allowing uninterrupted goods shipments across the tumultuous Black Sea during the persisting conflict with Russia. Brodies unveiled the revolutionary insurance arrangement, orchestrating a financial ballet that channels funds to accounts at two Ukrainian state banks, Ukrgasbank and Ukreximbank. These financial powerhouses are then empowered to issue irrevocable letters of credit, each confirmed and guaranteed by Germany’s DZ Bank AG.

https://usaherald.com/brodies-guides-on-war-risk-insurance-for-ukrainian-exports...


H2 Green Steel Boden: Complex financing includes Euler Hermes

(TXF News, London, 23 January) H2 Green Steel (H2GS) – the world’s second green hydrogen mega project – has taken a similar approach to Neom for its hydrogen-powered steel manufacturing project in Boden, Sweden. The simple math – 1% overall cost increase for 40% emissions decrease on the final manufactured product – has enabled H2GS to get a long list of very solid credits signed up to term sheets or steel supply agreements. The multi-sourced debt facilities backing the €6 billion-plus project was signed on 21 December 2023 and are expected to reach financial close in Q1. The overall financing for H2GS comprises €4.15 billion of senior and junior debt... and debt facilities for the project comprised of two €1.2 billion 12.75-year tranches with 95% and 80% cover provided by Euler Hermes and Riksgalden (Swedish National debt Office) respectively, a €200 million 12.75-year direct loan from the EIB, a €250 million 12.75-year term loan, a €300 million 12.75-year revolving credit and a €400 million 12.75-year contingency tranche.

https://www.txfnews.com/articles/7631/H2-Green-Steel-Boden-Long-on-ambitions-low...


Swedish “Green” Steel Plant Secures $7 Billion in Financing

(Thomasnet, New York, 29 January 2024) The developer of the world’s first large-scale plant that will manufacture “green” steel has now secured some $7 billion in financing for the project to date, company officials announced. More than 20 lenders signed onto the debt financing, including the European Investment Bank, the Swedish Export Credit Corp., and numerous commercial banks. The new equity funding, meanwhile, came from the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund and Siemens Financial Services, among others. H2 Green Steel recently disclosed new debt financing agreements worth $4.6 billion and said that its equity funding had increased by $325 million — up to $2.3 billion. It has also received a grant from a European Union energy innovation initiative worth about $270 million. H2, founded in Stockholm in 2020, aims to replace the use of fossil fuels in heavy industry with hydrogen fuel produced with renewable electricity, thereby slashing greenhouse gas emissions. The company says its steelmaking process reduces carbon dioxide emissions by up to 95% compared to conventional steel production, which uses blast furnaces fired by coke, a coal-based fuel.

https://www.thomasnet.com/insights/worlds-first-green-steel-plant-secures-7-bill...


Northvolt gets $5bn green loan for European EV push

Northvolt AB, the Swedish battery maker that counts BMW, Volvo Car and Volkswagen among its clients, has secured a $5 billion (€4.59 billion) green loan to bolster production and expand recycling efforts. The package backed by the Luxembourg-based European Investment Bank is among the largest green loans on record. Northvolt is central for European efforts to establish an electric-vehicle supply chain that can rival Asia and the US. The company plans to use the money to expand production at its main Swedish factory in Skelleftea and grow an adjacent recycling plant. It’s funding is guaranteed by export credit agencies and provided by 23 commercial banks in addition to the Nordic Investment Bank and the European Investment Bank, which is lending slightly over $1 billion (€942.6 million). A significant portion of the loan is covered with certain guarantees combined with direct funding from the Swedish National Debt Office, Euler Hermes, the Export-Import Bank of Korea, Japan’s Nippon Export and Investment Insurance, or NEXI, and the Korea Trade Insurance Corporation.

https://www.luxtimes.lu/europeanunion/northvolt-gets-5bn-green-loan-for-european...


Petroperú Desperate for Cash Loses $500M SACE Loan Guarantee

(Amazon Watch, Oakland, 25 January 2024) In 2023, the Peruvian state-owned oil company, Petroperú, faced one of its worst financial crises, due to its accumulation of up to $6.5 billion in debt for its Talara Refinery Project, which will likely serve as a major driver of oil exploration and exploitation in Indigenous territories of the Amazon and in ancestral fishing grounds in the north Peruvian coast. Due to successful community opposition against oil activities, Petroperú was unable to secure a $500 million loan guarantee in 2023 from Italy’s export credit agency (SACE) partly due to intense scrutiny from Indigenous nations and strong backlash against Petroperú in Italy. The world’s largest fossil fuel financiers, Citigroup and JPMorgan Chase, are considering supporting the company again by arranging or underwriting Petroperú’s $1 billion bond issuance. This is despite ongoing demands by a united front of multiple Indigenous nations of the Peruvian Amazon for international financiers to halt new financing for Petroperú.

https://amazonwatch.org/news/2024/0125-petroperu-is-desperate-for-cash-but-were-...


How to Deal with Sinosure as an Importer

(Global Trading Magazine, Dallas, 8 January 2024) An in-depth guide on handling the Sinosure export credit insurance services and getting deferred payments for your imports from Chinese suppliers. Payment terms in contracts with Chinese suppliers can require as much as 30% of the total up front as a hedge against the importer’s nonpayment, also known as its credit risk. The remainder of the payment is usually due before the Chinese exporter ships the goods. Sinosure, the China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation, is an official financial institution designed to help in cases like that. It provides export credit insurance to companies in China seeking to do business with foreign buyers without having to bear the risk of nonpayment. While Sinosure’s clients are the exporting Chinese companies, its business benefits importers outside of China by eliminating cash flow issues and extended delivery times. With this insurance safeguard, suppliers are more willing to extend deferred payment terms and trade turnover with their foreign partners, to the mutual benefit of both parties. In the year 2022, Sinosure ensured export credit worth more than $700 billion for approximately 240,000 Chinese exporters. This compares with only $2.61 billion insured that year by US Exim. Sinosure insures so much more because it is a key part of the country’s export drive, and it maintains a large sales and customer service network throughout China, whereas US Exim generally focuses on a few large-scale industries like airplanes, power generation, and infrastructure.

https://www.globaltrademag.com/how-to-deal-with-sinosure-as-an-importer/


European Union readies €300mn ECA pilot

(Global Trade Review, London, 17 January 2024) The European Union is advancing plans to launch its inaugural risk-sharing instrument for the export credit sector, with a pilot initiative aimed at boosting SME exports to war-torn Ukraine. The European Commission is developing the scheme alongside the EU’s SME financing arm, the European Investment Fund (EIF), which is expected to guarantee export credit deals involving Ukrainian buyers. It will be the first EU-level risk-sharing instrument provided to the export credit sector, the European Commission says, and highlights how Brussels is increasingly seeking to wield the might of export credit agencies (ECAs) from its 27-member states to advance policy goals, such as green energy, overseas investment and competing with China and the US. Austria’s ECA OeKB, Finnvera, the European Investment Fund, Atradius DSB, Denmark's EIFO and Poland’s ECA Kuke are studying participation.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/europe/european-union-readies-e300mn-eca-pilot/


UKEF: Taxpayers underwrite French contractor’s Saudi project

(Construction Index, London, 5 January 2024) The UK’s export credit agency has guaranteed an Islamic Murabaha financing facility for the development of Six Flags Qiddiya City near Riyadh. UK Export Finance (UKEF) has guaranteed an Islamic Murabaha financing facility for £550m signed by Qiddiya Investment Company to finance the construction of the theme park. This is being undertaken by a joint venture led by Bouygues Bâtiment International of France and local firm Almabani General Contractors. UK Export Finance chief executive Tim Reid said: “Saudi Arabia’s ‘Vision 2030’ is hugely ambitious, and UKEF is determined to ensure that British businesses can benefit from the enormous exporting opportunities it offers.

https://www.theconstructionindex.co.uk/news/view/uk-taxpayers-underwrite-french-...


African tri-nation transport project to start Phase II

(Southern Africa Freight News, Johannesburg, 15 January) The African Development Bank-financed Tanzania-Burundi-DR Congo Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) Project has commenced to Phase 2. The bank's financing is intended to construct 651 kilometres on the Tanzania-Burundi railway line. The bank will provide $98.62 million to Burundi in the form of grants and $597.79m to Tanzania in loans and guarantees. As the Initial Mandate Lead Arranger, the bank will structure and mobilise financing of up to $3.2 billion from commercial banks, development financial institutions, export credit agencies and institutional investors. The total cost of the project both in Tanzania and Burundi is estimated at nearly $3.93bn. The construction of this railway will allow Burundi to intensify the exploitation of nickel, of which the country has the tenth-largest deposit in the world in the Musongati mining fields. The country also has resources such as lithium and cobalt,

https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/african-tri-nation-transport-project-start...


Belgian ECA Credendo helps expansion of Montevideo Port to Boost Uruguay's Foreign Trade

(BNAmericas, Santiago, 10 January 2024) IDB Invest will provide $103 million in financing to Terminal Cuenca del Plata S.A. (TCP), including the mobilization of resources for $46 million from Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria S.A. (BBVA) for the design, construction and operation of the expansion of the Port of Montevideo. Additionally, IDB Invest financing will be complemented by a financing facility given to commercial banks by Belgium's export credit agency, Credendo, for a total amount of approximately $340 million.

https://www.bnamericas.com/en/news/idb-invest-supports-the-expansion-of-the-port...


FLASH: US Exim readies for US$2bn domestic financing boom

(Global Trade Review, 31 January 2024) The Export-Import Bank of the United States (US Exim) is anticipating a “significant” rise in domestic financing activity in the coming year as it works to rejig its offering and grow investment in key sectors such as semiconductors, critical minerals and renewable energy.  US Exim first launched the Make More in America (MMIA) programme nearly two years ago, following a 100-day review of critical supply chains.  Deals to-date for some $350m are dwarfed by the financing extended by rival export credit agencies under their equivalent programmes, such as the UK’s, which since releasing its export development guarantee in 2020 has rolled out billions of dollars in support to large corporates such as Ford and Jaguar Land Rover.  “The MMIA initiative is going to be a boon for American manufacturers and American manufacturing. We have US$2bn in the pipeline,” said US Exim’s first vice-president and vice-chair of its board, Judith Pryor, while noting deals are split across a range of industries, such as energy efficiency, battery storage, satellites and critical minerals.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/americas/us-exim-readies-for-us2bn-domestic-financ...


What's New for December 2023

"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.

  • ECAs supporting billions in global trade form net-zero alliance facing civil society scepticism
  • At COP28, Export Development Canada joined Net Zero Alliance Despite Fossil Financing
  • Norway joins 40-signatory partnership to end international public finance for fossil fuels
  • Texas Gulf Coast communities speak out against Japanese ECA backed LNG development
  • EXIM Lent Nearly $1 Billion to Fossil Fuel Projects in 2023
  • PPIB Announces $2 Billion Financial Close of Thar Coal-Fired Plant
  • Saudi Arabia concludes €1 billion financing deal with Italy’s SACE
  • North Field expansion project - a quantum leap in leadership of Qatar's global energy landscape
  • TFX: Export finance trends of 2023: ECAs spearhead success amidst global challenges and geopolitical shifts
  • Gunvor gets gas loan backed by SACE
  • Ukraine strikes deal to get 2 Royal Navy minehunters from UK with UKEF support
  • Italy’s export credit agency SACE unveils its ambitious ESG strategy at COP28
  • Pakistan’s Export-Import Bank formally launched
  • Türk Eximbank expected to provide exporters $41 billion in 2023

ECAs supporting billions in global trade form net-zero alliance facing civil society scepticism

(UNEP, Dubai, 4 December 2023) At COP28 today, 8 leading export credit agencies, in partnership with the University of Oxford, Future of Climate Cooperation, and the UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) launched the UN-convened Net-Zero Export Credit Agencies Alliance (NZECA), the first net-zero alliance comprising public finance institutions globally. In working to deliver net-zero economies by 2050, the NZECA will help decarbonise global trade and facilitate joint action from public and private finance. Combined, these ECAs supported an estimated US$120 billion in global trade in 2022 alone, providing finance and other services such as insurance and guarantees to facilitate local companies’ international exports. The export credit industry is hugely influential globally, with up to $28 trillion – comprising 80 to 90 per cent - of international trade relying on export financing, much of it provided by governments via export credit agencies and export-import banks. But NGOs note that a study by Net Zero Tracker found the bulk of “net zero” commitments from fossil fuel companies were meaningless as they either included no short-term emissions reduction plans, or did not fully cover scope 3 emissions (that is, the pollution released when a company’s products are used). Net Zero hopes/assumes that in the future technology will come along that can suck the carbon out of the atmosphere so that they can just keep going as it is until then.

https://www.unep.org/news-and-stories/press-release/export-credit-agencies-suppo...


At COP28, Export Development Canada joined Net Zero Alliance Despite Fossil Financing

(Environmental Defense, Toronto, 4 December 2023) At COP28, Export Development Canada (EDC) joined other export credit agencies to launch the Net-Zero Export Credit Agencies Alliances (NZECA), an alliance of international public finance institutions committed to reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. However, EDC continues to provide public financing to oil and gas companies. In 2022, EDC provided around CAD $20 billion in public financing to oil and gas companies (which includes $12  billion for the Trans Mountain Expansion, or TMX, pipeline). So far this year, they have provided around CAD $12 billion (which includes $6  billion in loans for the TMX pipeline). “Crown corporation Export Development Canada has no place in a net zero alliance. Canada’s export credit agency continues to provide tens of billions each year to oil and gas companies, using publicly-back money to finance the companies and the activities that are fueling the climate crisis. Years of climate promises, including their own net zero commitment, have not made a difference." said Julia Levin, Associate Directorof Environmental Defense in Dubai.

https://environmentaldefence.ca/2023/12/04/at-cop28-export-development-canada-jo...


Norway joins 40-signatory partnership to end international public finance for fossil fuels

(Oil Change International, Washington, 2 December 2023) Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre  announced today that Norway has joined the Clean Energy Transition Partnership (CETP, sometimes called the Glasgow Statement) at the UN COP28 climate summit in Dubai. Boost for CETP which now boasts 40 signatories (including US, Canada, and many EU countries), shifting billions per year out of fossil fuels to clean energy. Norway – as a major oil & gas producing nation – boosts the initiative by joining, building momentum at the OECD level to create new rules to end international fossil finance across the OECD. This move from Norway bolsters an international campaign to adopt new rules at the OECD (the group of the world’s wealthiest countries) to end export finance support for fossil fuels. OECD countries supported fossil fuel exports by an average of USD 41 billion from 2018 to 2020, almost five times more than clean energy exports. The EU, Canada, and UK have tabled a proposal to end this finance. Having signed onto the CETP, Norway is now expected to deliver on the CETP’s commitment to “driving multilateral commitments in international bodiesby aligning with the UK, EU, and Canada in the push for oil and gas restrictions at the OECD.

https://priceofoil.org/2023/12/02/norway-joins-40-signatory-partnership-to-end-i...


Texas Gulf Coast communities speak out against Japanese ECA backed LNG development

(Oil Change International, Washington, 28 November 2023) Representatives of Friends of the Earth Japan & Oil Change International traveled to Texas & Louisiana in early November for a week-long tour, organized by Texas Campaign for the Environment, to witness & learn about the impacts of LNG development on local communities. The Japanese government is the largest global financier of LNG export terminals, providing 50% of international public finance, or $39.7 billion, for LNG export capacity built from 2012-2022, as well as projects under construction or expected to be built by 2026. In the Gulf South, Japan’s export credit agencies, the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and Nippon Export and Investment Insurance, provided $3.7 billion in financing for the Freeport LNG terminal & $4.5 billion for Cameron LNG in 2014.  The Japanese & Korean governments are also rolling out plans to develop new ammonia & hydrogen production & export facilities globally including in Lake Charles & Corpus Christi. These projects would worsen the climate crisis & subject communities to further exploitation & harm. The proliferation of LNG projects & petrochemical facilities, coupled with regulatory failure to enforce environmental standards, have allowed the fossil fuel industry to severely pollute the air & water without consequence. Residents of Port Arthur & other communities on the Gulf Coast suffer from high rates of cancer, respiratory infections & migraines. Water security is also an issue. Industrial water use is prioritized over the needs of local residents. Despite the serious health and safety concerns with the Freeport LNG terminal, Japan’s export credit insurance agency NEXI is planning to support the expansion of the Cameron LNG terminal located on Calcasieu Lake in Louisiana.

https://priceofoil.org/2023/11/28/the-smell-of-death-communities-speak-out-again...


EXIM Lent Nearly $1 Billion to Fossil Fuel Projects in 2023

(New Republic, New York, 28 December 2023) President Joe Biden pledged to stop financing such projects overseas, and yet the U.S. Export-Import Bank continues to do so. While much of the country was occupied last week with holiday travel and time with family, a little-known government agency approved a $90 million guarantee for ING Capital to finance a liquified natural gas export facility in Texas. All told this year, that agency—the U.S. Export-Import Bank—has approved nearly $1 billion in fossil fuel lending, including $100 million for expanding an oil refinery in Indonesia and $400 million of insurance for revolving credit facilities to help commodity trading giant Trafigura purchase LNG. Not long after taking office, in January 2021, President Joe Biden signed an executive order which tasked the bank and other federal agencies with identifying “steps through which the United States can promote ending international financing of carbon-intensive fossil fuel–based energy.”

https://newrepublic.com/article/177757/export-import-bank-1-billion-fossil-fuel-...


PPIB Announces $2 Billion Financial Close of Thar Coal-Fired Plant

(ProPakistani, Islamabad, 14 December 2023) The Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) announced the $2 billion financial close of the Thar coal-fired power project, which is currently under Chinese management. The project’s main sponsor is Shanghai Electric Group Corporation, while the coal supplier from Thar Block-1 is Sino-Sindh Resources Limited (SSRL). The ICBC, China Development Bank, Bank of Communications Co. Limited, China Minsheng Bank Corporation, Postal Savings Bank of China Co Limited, and Agriculture Bank of China are the main sponsors while Sinosure, China’s premier provider of export credit insurance, was the insurer. The project, which has a power capacity of 1,320MW, is part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). This plant brings the total installed capacity of five commissioned Thar coal-based power plants to 3,300MW.

https://propakistani.pk/2023/12/14/ppib-announces-2-billion-financial-close-of-t...


Saudi Arabia concludes €1 billion financing deal with Italy’s SACE

(Economy Middle East, UAE) Saudi Arabia’s National Debt Management Center (NDMC) has concluded a financing arrangement worth €1 billion with the Italian insurance-financial group SACE. The deal is part of a broader initiative to strengthen trade and investment relations between Saudi Arabia and Italy. The kingdom is seeking to benefit from all available financing resources for government projects as part of its Vision 2030 strategy. Notably, the financing was made through several international banks and aims to finance Saudi Vision 2030’s development and infrastructure projects. Moreover, it is Saudi Arabia’s third financing of its kind following other financing from financial institutions through other export credit agencies.

https://economymiddleeast.com/news/saudi-arabia-financing-arrangement-sace/


North Field expansion project - a quantum leap in leadership of Qatar's global energy landscape

(Gulf Times, Doha, 25 December 2023) Qatar’s energy sector saw a quantum leap in October this year when His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani laid the foundation stone of the North Field expansion project, which will raise the country’s LNG production capacity from the current 77mn tonnes per year (mtpy) to 126mtpy by 2026. QatarEnergy is partnered in this global project by TotalEnergies, Shell, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Eni, Sinopec, and CNPC. The article outlines a large series of LNG project and sales to multiple European countries, noting they have also secured $4.4bn financing for the Ras Laffan Petrochemicals project, a world scale integrated polymers complex in Ras Laffan Industrial City, Qatar. The senior debt financing package is comprised of commercial and Islamic facilities as well as Export Credit Agency (ECA) financing.

https://www.gulf-times.com/article/674257/business/north-field-expansion-project...


TFX: Export finance trends of 2023: ECAs spearhead success amidst global challenges and geopolitical shifts

(TFX News, London, 22 December 2023) ECAs have looked to adapt their support for buyers and exporters in a high interest rate environment, revisiting and revamping older policies. The success of this evolution can be seen in the data – export finance is set for a record-breaking year. Greater flexibility brings diversification in financing instruments – the rise of untied support schemes for large corporates has continued with major new deals involving Trafigura, Siemens Energy and Gunvor. This has also given ECAs a prominent new geopolitical role. Realpolitik has driven ECAs into the world of energy security and they must now be more proactive than ever in their support for national interest. Reforms to the OECD Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits arrived after years of negotiation and debate. While the impact of these changes will only be truly felt over the coming year, the market has reacted with optimism. Tenors for large-scale renewables projects have been pushed out to up to 22 years while most other projects can now go up to 15 years. The premium rate curve has also been adjusted for obligors with high credit risk ratings. These changes increase the affordability of the ECA product at a time of economic turmoil. However, questions remain: how will ECAs balance their portfolios as longer maturities become the norm? Should the Arrangement set a common position on support for fossil fuel projects? Can ECAs plug the funding gap as critical minerals make headlines? The phrase ‘critical mineral’ has now become standard parlance as countries look to secure the green energy transition with a steady supply of metal. However, the mining industry continues to suffer from a chronic lack of investment. ECA financing is increasingly available for projects that are deemed significant for national security. Over the course of 2023 ECAs supported several project financings including the Kathleen Valley lithium deal and the Hybar rebar steel mill facility. Expect to see this deal flow rise over 2024 if ECAs can make good on their expressions of interest. Talks are under way for three new mines led by Cerrado Gold, while BNP Paribas will lead the financing for Vulcan Energy’s zero-carbon lithium project.
Watch the TXF highlights of 2023 video!

https://www.txfnews.com/articles/7623/Export-finance-trends-of-2023-ECAs-spearhe...


Gunvor gets gas loan backed by SACE

(LNG Prime, Sarajevo, 15 December 2023) Geneva-based trader Gunvor has clos
ed a 400 million euro ($437 million) loan, backed by the Italy's SACE, to secure supplies of natural gas and LNG for Italian industry. The five-year term loan is guaranteed by SACE, the Italian export credit agency controlled by the country’s economy and finance ministry. Gunvor said in a statement that UniCredit acted as a global coordinator. The goal of the facility is to support Italian industry by securing natural gas and LNG supplies while promoting the export of Italy’s goods and services, the trader said.

https://lngprime.com/europe/gunvor-gets-loan-backed-by-italy/100075/


Ukraine strikes deal to get 2 Royal Navy minehunters from UK with UKEF support

(Politico, Brussels, 11 December 2023) Britain will hand over two Royal Navy minehunter ships to Ukraine as the war-torn country grapples with a continued blockage of the Black Sea by Russia. U.K. Defense Secretary Grant Shapps will on Monday announce Ukraine's armed forces have "procured" the Sandown Class vessels from Britain's Royal Navy, although the details of the transfer are still being arranged through U.K. Export Finance, London's export credit agency. The move is part of a new Maritime Capability Coalition, set up with Norway, to help bolster Ukraine's maritime training, equipment and infrastructure. Norwegian Defense Minister Bjørn Arild Gram will be in London on Monday to launch the initiative. The new coalition wants to help Ukraine transform its navy to make it "more compatible with Western allies, more interoperable with NATO, and bolstering security in the Black Sea," the Defense Ministry said.

https://www.politico.eu/article/ukraine-strikes-deal-to-get-two-royal-navy-mineh...


Italy’s export credit agency SACE unveils its ambitious ESG strategy at COP28

(Zawya, London, 1 December 2023) Italian export credit agency SACE unveiled a new ESG [environmental, social, and governance] strategy at COP 28, which will progressively align its business model with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The new strategy, unveiled at an offsite event during the COP28 summit in Dubai on Thursday, will integrate ESG criteria into decision-making processes and is underpinned by a scientific impact measurement system, the Agency said in a press statement. The Italian ECA is working on a €8.7 billion pipeline in the Gulf region for the Italian supply chain in strategic sectors such as renewables, infrastructure and construction, logistics, food and beverage, and energy. The Agency is also working on a €2 billion pipeline for Green Push transactions in the region.

https://www.zawya.com/en/projects/utilities/italys-export-credit-agency-sace-unv...


Pakistan’s Export-Import Bank formally launched

(Pakistan Today, Islamabad, 21 December 2023) Caretaker Minister for Finance, Revenue, and Economic Affairs, Dr Shamshad Akhtar, formally inaugurated Pakistan’s Export-Import Bank (EXIM) on Thursday. The move is aimed at strengthening external trade, attracting investments, and fostering broader economic growth in the country. The Caretaker Minister for Finance stated that institutions like EXIM have a global impact, noting that they disbursed a substantial $2.5 trillion in trade finance last year, benefiting exports across more than 60 countries. She stated that as EXIM Pakistan grows, it will play a crucial role in promoting trade finance through a well-structured institutional framework and effective policies. The finance minister stressed the need for streamlining export policy frameworks to contribute to the sustainability of the balance of payments, addressing historical challenges related to low levels of export earnings.

https://profit.pakistantoday.com.pk/2023/12/21/pakistans-export-import-bank-form...


Türk Eximbank expected to provide exporters $41 billion in 2023

(Daily Sabah, Istanbul, 19 December 2023) The funding that Türkiye’s state-owned financial institution providing banking services to exporters extended this year is expected to reach $41 billion (TL 1.19 trillion) by the end of 2023, its chairperson said Tuesday. Export Credit Bank of Türkiye (Türk Eximbank) has provided $38 billion from January through November, General Manager Ali Güney said, adding that they supported 16,800 exporters, with the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) ratio reaching 84%. “In 2022, we supported a total of 15,440 exporters, of which 81% were SMEs, while in 2023, the number of supported exporters increased to 16,800, with an SME ratio of 84%,” Güney told Anadolu Agency (AA). In another Daily Sabah article of 29 December, it was noted that Türk Eximbank had become a shareholder in the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), the continent’s leading infrastructure solutions provider. Türk Eximbank's first investment in an African entity makes it the first non-African sovereign shareholder in the AFC, it said in a statement.

https://www.dailysabah.com/business/economy/turk-eximbank-expected-to-provide-ex...


What's New for November 2023

"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?

Joint letter from 125 international CSOs to global leaders at COP28 calling for transformative public finance for a globally just energy transition

(ECA-Watch, 1 December 2023) As climate disasters intensify and as more people than ever are forced to choose between heating and eating, or transport and shelter, we called on the leaders of our governments and public finance institutions to work together at COP28 to end the fossil fuel era and build in its place a 100% renewable economy that works for everyone. There is no shortage of public money available to do this, it is just poorly distributed, flowing to fossil fuels and the super-rich instead of shared priorities. Some ECAs and insurers have dialled back their involvement in traditional energy sector projects in recent years, but renewable energy still only accounts for about 5% of total new longer-tenor commitments. Such support is less than the US$12bn provided to the natural resources industry – which includes the exploration and extraction of hydrocarbons – and the US$18bn supplied to traditional energy projects. This is because a handful of Global North governments and corporations hold outsized control over global monetary, trade, tax, and debt rules as well as our international financial institutions (IFIs). At COP28, public finance finds itself at a crossroads. IFIs and the Global North governments who largely control them must stop their over reliance on the private sector as the vehicle to fund climate solutions — an approach that has consistently under delivered and often caused great harm. We urgently need public finance policy, priorities, and governance to push instead towards a 1.5C-aligned just energy transition rooted in collective wellbeing and global and local equity. To do this, we will need to transform public finance institutions to be equitable, democratic, rights-upholding, feminist, sustainable, and transparent. We will also need to write new financial architecture rules that will ensure Global North governments and corporations pay their fair share for the crises we face, and also prioritize channeling finance for a just transition though institutions which are democratically accountable to Global South countries and peoples. We have enough money to have a full, fast, fair, and funded fossil fuel phase out and build a fair and 100% renewable economy in its place, what is lacking is political courage. For the sake of people and planet, COP28 must mark a turning point in your approach to public finance. Organizations wishing to add their support for this call may add their signatures to the letter after release through this link




Environmental groups urge funding halt for TotalEnergies' Mozambique project

(Times Live, Johannesberg, 17 November 2023) Banks and other financiers should withdraw their support of TotalEnergies' $20 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Mozambique, environmental lobby groups urged in a letter sent to more than two dozen project funders on Friday. The letter, seen by Reuters, comes at a crucial juncture for the French energy company as it prepares to relaunch Africa's largest foreign direct investment project. Activists warn the project may worsen climate change and fuel human rights abuses in the impoverished southern African nation. “As a critical financial supporter of the project, you bear a direct and important responsibility in its dreadful impacts,” the letter, supported by more than 100 organisations, including ActionAid International and Greenpeace France, said. Last month, lawmakers in the Netherlands said they would insist on being consulted on safety and human rights concerns before they can approve a 1 billion euro ($1.06 billion) loan guarantee for the project, stalled since April 2021. TotalEnergies said before Friday's letter that arrangements for project finance remain in place despite a 'force majeure' halt in 2021 when Islamist militants threatened the project site. Financing agreements for the project were struck in 2020 with direct and covered loans from eight export credit agencies, 19 commercial banks and the African Development Bank (AfDB).

https://www.timeslive.co.za/news/africa/2023-11-17-environmental-groups-urge-fun...


EU, UK, and Canada move to phase out fossil fuel finance at OECD

(Price of Oil, Washington, 8 November 2023) This week in Paris, some of the world’s wealthiest countries met at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development (OECD) headquarters to discuss how Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) – the world’s largest public financiers for fossil fuels – can be aligned with climate goals. The UK, Canada and the EU put forward proposals to extend coal restrictions to oil and gas. The United States – a key influencer in the OECD process – did not take position on the proposal yet, despite President Biden’s multiple promises at the G7 and at the 2021 COP26 UN climate talks to end public finance for fossil fuels. Japan and South Korea, two of the world’s biggest financiers of international fossil fuel projects, also failed to come out in support of the proposal, despite both countries signing of the Paris climate agreement and Japan’s G7 commitment to end its international public finance for fossil fuels.

https://priceofoil.org/2023/11/08/eu-uk-and-canada-move-to-phase-out-fossil-fuel...


OECD oil and gas export credit fossil fuel ban postponed to next year

(Global Trade Review, London, 15 November 2023) A proposal to end export finance for oil and gas supported by the UK, EU and Canada will remain under discussion at next year’s OECD meetings after being tabled last week during negotiations in Paris. If agreed, the proposal would see a ban on export credits for new oil and gas projects, following the approach taken to prevent export credit agencies (ECAs) from financing unabated coal-fired power plants. The current proposal calls for a similar prohibition on oil and gas, a move that would bypass the transition stage seen in the approach to coal of an emission threshold coming before an overall ban. “The EU and UK position expands that coal-fired power prohibition to include all fossil fuels and all parts of the fossil fuel value chain, with some exceptions,” says Nina Pušić, OECD export finance climate strategist at Oil Change International (OCI), speaking to GTR from the negotiations. This could be a stumbling block in securing the agreement of the remaining eight countries in the Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits: Australia, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey and the US. According to OCI, Japan and Korea together provide on average more than US$16bn in oil and gas financing, based on 2018-2020 levels, while OECD ECAs provided an average of US$41bn per year in export support to fossil fuels between 2018 and 2020. The OECD is set to meet again in Q2 next year.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/sustainability/oecd-oil-and-gas-export-credit-ban-...


Where are the Cop26 finance pledges now?

(Climate Change News, Broadstairs UK, 3 November 2023) At Cop26 in Glasgow, hundreds of governments and private institutions joined forces in a series of pledges promising ambitious goals on methane reduction, forest protection and the shift of finance away from fossil fuels. End new direct public support for the international unabated fossil fuel energy sector by the end of 2022, except in limited and clearly defined circumstances that are consistent with a 1.5°C warming limit and the goals of the Paris Agreement. 34 countries and five development banks – predominantly from wealthy cuontries – signed up to the pledge at Cop26. These included the G7 nations – with the exception of Japan – and most EU member states. HOW IT IS GOING: Among the signatories that give lots of money to the energy sector, the vast majority have introduced policies in line with the promise made in Glasgow. The United Kingdom, France, Denmark, New Zealand, Canada, Finland and Sweden have stopped providing loans and guarantees for oil and gas extraction and processing overseas through their export credit agencies. Their actions have shifted at least $5.7 billion per year in public finance out of fossil fuels and into clean energy, according to analysis by Oil Change International and E3G. On the other hand, however, the USA, Italy and Germany have continued funding international fossil fuel projects in 2023 in breach of the pledge. They were supposed to stop funding foreign fossil fuels by December 2022. But since then, they collectively approved over $3 billion in financial support to oil and gas overseas programmes. Most of the funding comes in the form of state-backed guarantees provided by export credit agencies. These products limit the risk taken by companies selling services and goods in other countries, influencing investment.

https://www.climatechangenews.com/2023/11/03/forests-methane-finance-where-are-t...


Saudi Arabia Courts African Leaders to keep the world hooked on oil

(Foreign Policy, Washington, 15 November 2023) Riyadh hosted African leaders last Friday at the first Saudi-Africa summit on fostering trade ties. Among other measures, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman proposed $10 billion to finance and insure Saudi exports through 2030 and an additional $5 billion in development financing for African nations. A New York Times article on Saudi efforts notes that the kingdom is working to keep fossil fuels at the center of the world economy for decades to come by lobbying, funding research and using its diplomatic muscle to obstruct climate action. The Arab Africa Trade Bridges Program, a multi-donor, inter-regional program, has signed two agreements aimed at fostering sustainable growth and development on the sidelines of the Intra Africa Trade Fair 2023 in Cairo with support from the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation. In addition,  Africa’s Global Bank, United Bank for Africa, UBA, Plc, and the Saudi Export-Import Bank, Saudi EXIM have entered into a partnership aimed at strengthening business growth and enhancing economic cooperation between their economies.

https://foreignpolicy.com/2023/11/15/saudi-arabia-africa-mbs-debt-investment-dev...


ExxonMobil and ECAs make moves on lithium

(Global Trade Review, London, 15 November 2023) Oil supermajor ExxonMobil has unveiled plans to become a “leading producer” of lithium ahead of an expected leap in demand for battery metals – but for pure commodity traders, big moves remain a more distant prospect. Export credit agencies (ECAs) are also upping involvement in lithium production. In August, ECAs from Australia, South Korea and the US revealed they were considering providing a US$195mn package of support for a lithium mine in the Australian outback, which is expected to produce 15,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent per year. A new report from Both ENDs and FARN explores the case of lithium mining in Argentina and provides recommendations for making a just transition to sustainable energy systems. It explores the extraction of these minerals which requires investments, and how export credit agencies (ECAs) are increasingly looking for ways to support businesses that do what they call "green projects" abroad, projects which are promoted under a market logic, but with rhetoric linked to the climate crisis and energy transition. This raises the question: should they? And, moreover, is mining for critical minerals a green investment? And are export credit agencies the right agent to help promote a just energy transition?

https://www.gtreview.com/news/global/exxonmobil-makes-big-move-on-lithium-but-co...


Banks urge OECD to resurrect 5% down-payment rule

(Global Trade Review, London, 22 November 2023) Export finance banks are urging members of the OECD Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits to reinstate the rule reducing the down-payment threshold for emerging market borrowers to 5% amid escalating debt risks. On November 4, a temporary common line which had allowed export credit agencies (ECAs) to cover up to 95% of the total export contract value on sovereign transactions – involving category II (non high income) nations – came to an end. The common line was first introduced in late 2021 to counter reported constraints in the private insurance market, and was renewed last November for a further 12 months. The temporary rule has now been formally wound down and any new ECA deals involving sovereign borrowers must revert to financing 15% of the contract on commercial terms. In another development, negotiators secured a modernisation of the OECD Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits in March which saw maximum repayment terms for export credit agency (ECA)-supported, climate-friendly projects extended to 22 years, while the maximum tenor for all projects was upped from 10 to 15 years. Revised repayment terms under the OECD framework on export credits could be challenging for banks, prompting increased demand for alternative means of funding, according to industry experts. It will be challenging for certain banks, especially in the current macroeconomic climate. All the banks are struggling with much higher funding costs compared to two or three years ago,” said Nazli Konac Edgu, director of export and agency finance at Citi.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/global/banks-urge-oecd-to-resurrect-down-payment-r...


Russian export credit claims soar

(Global Trade Review, London, 7 September 2023) The export credit insurance market saw claims jump by more than 700% in Russia last year, as the industry grappled with the fallout of the Ukraine crisis and western sanctions, Berne Union research shows. Short-term export credit claims involving obligors in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) region increased by US$229mn from a year earlier, the union’s State of the Industry report for 2022 finds. Payouts in Europe also rose by US$118mn year-on-year as businesses felt the indirect impact of Russia’s full-scale invasion, which disrupted supply chains for critical inputs and drove up commodities prices. The data reveals how export credit agencies (ECAs) and trade credit insurers were stung by the Ukraine war, despite efforts to swiftly cut cover for Russian firms in the early weeks of the crisis due to financial and reputational risks. The analysis by the Berne Union, a global association representing ECAs and private insurers, shows new short-term export credit business in Russia and CIS fell from US$34bn to US$16bn – by more than 70% – as insurers pulled back. Arrears – or overdue payments by borrowers in the medium to long-term segment – rose by 11% or nearly US$8bn. On a brighter note for the industry, overall claims paid out by ECAs and insurers on their policies fell to US$7.7bn – a decline of about US$1bn – following a 33% drop in claims in the transportation sector, the data shows.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/global/russia-export-credit-claims-soar-as-market-...


EDC uses environmental review directives on less than 1% of transactions

 (Globe & Mail, Toronto, 3 November 2023) Canada’s export financing agency applies its own flagship environmental and social review process in less than 1% of the transactions it supports, the Auditor-General of Canada’s office has found. An audit report released to Parliament Thursday determined that of nearly 7,800 loans EDC supported between May, 2019, and March, 2023, just 33 (or 0.4%) were reviewed under EDC’s Environmental and Social Review Directive. The report recommended that EDC apply the directive more broadly and warned that when it does not, it’s at elevated risk of financing projects that increase greenhouse gas emissions, harm biodiversity and violate human rights, and operating at cross-purposes to the federal government’s own commitments.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-edc-uses-environmental-review-d...


Spillover effects of the Ukraine crisis: political risk insurance in times of brinkmanship

(Berne Union, London, 7 September 2023) A Berne Union report investigates how political risk insurance can be approached amid the ongoing effects of the pandemic, geopolitics and the evolving Russia/Ukraine crisis. The search for new, diversified suppliers of strategic materials to support the energy and technological transition may result in fresh investment flows for countries with both limited stability and little capacity in order to handle the amount of investment and operations required. Apart from China and Russia, several of the sovereigns that are likely to emerge as incremental suppliers were rated B or lower, even before the current crisis, and/or possess a country risk category that could make the cost of financing excessive or further complicate their fiscal position in the short- to medium-term.

https://www.berneunion.org/Articles/Details/664/Spillover-effects-of-the-Ukraine...


World's largest car theft and the Swedish ECA

(The Times of India, Delhi, 9 November 2023) According to the Swedish Export Credit Agency, the interest and unpaid penalties on 1,000 Volvo cars, have racked up a breathtaking USD 322 million still owed. The 1974 order for the batch of 1000 Volvo 144 sedans to be used as taxis was given by Kim Jong Un’s grandfather, Kim Il Sung. Later, the Swedish government paid Volvo in full from public funds but is still waiting to retrieve the money from North Korea. The batch of vehicles, a significant component of a 1974 agreement, is now at the centre of what is considered to be the 'biggest car heist' in history.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/auto/news/worlds-largest-car-theft-was-done-...


Offshore wind firm secures £370 million government-backing to expand UK business

(Insider, Glascow, 16 November 2023) UK Export Finance (UKEF) has issued a loan guarantee so that Seaway7 can access a £370m funding package under its Export Development Guarantee so that the offshore wind company can invest in its UK operations. The guarantee covers 80% of the total loan, which has been coordinated by HSBC, with Citibank, Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, DNB and ING as mandated lead arrangers. UKEF’s backing is expected to help the firm win and service engineering, procurement construction and installation contracts for fixed offshore wind projects which will generate UK export revenue. Zero offshore wind projects were secured by the UK Government in the country’s latest clean power auction early today - dealing “a major blow” to Scotland and the UK’s renewable energy ambitions.

https://www.insider.co.uk/news/offshore-wind-firm-secures-370-31451259


Small nuclear reactor, funded by JBIC, is cancelled

(Friends of the Earth Japan, 13 November 2023) NuScale Power, a U.S.-based company, has announced the cancellation of its plan to build a small nuclear reactor in Idaho, U.S. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), had invested in NuScale in April last year, together with JGC Holdings Corp. and IHI Corporation. JBIC’s investment in NuScale was $110 million. At the time of JBIC’s investment, we pointed out that even under their new guise of “small modular reactors,” SMRs are no different from conventional nuclear power plants in that they have problems such as radioactive contamination over their life cycle, nuclear waste, accident risk, and the risk of becoming targets of terrorism and war. We also pointed out that SMRs, which are touted for their economic efficiency, actually increase the cost per unit of electricity generated, and argued that investors should not invest in high-risk SMRs.

https://foejapan.org/en/issue/20231113/14877/


Rethinking Technology Transfer to Support the Climate Agenda

(SDG/IISD, Winnipeg, 8 November 2023) 2022 was a milestone in global power energy markets. For the first time, total investment in renewable power generation and related products matched or slightly exceeded investment in fossil fuel production. By some estimates, global investment in clean energy could reach USD 1.7 trillion in 2023, led by solar, wind, and electric vehicles (EVs). But the projected growth in low-carbon technologies remains concentrated in a handful of countries or regions – mainly those with the size and fiscal space to promote the green industrial policies that are re-shaping global trade in low-carbon technologies. Overall investment in renewable energy in the majority of emerging market and developing economies (EMDEs) remains low. We need to ensure trade finance plays a bigger role in renewable energy trade. Although estimates vary, roughly 85 national export credit agencies (ECAs) together provide over USD 200 billion, most by offering export credit guarantees, insurance, hedging, and other instruments that together leverage as much as USD 1.5 trillion. The OECD Common Approaches, first adopted a decade ago and revised in 2021, are now lagging behind widening targets and practices, and need to be updated to align with the Paris Agreement.

https://sdg.iisd.org/commentary/guest-articles/rethinking-technology-transfer-to...


Trade credit insurance reaches just 13% of insured shipments

Global Trade Review, London, 22 November 2023) Premiums for trade credit insurance hit US$13.9bn in 2022, a small proportion [0.19%] of the US$7tn in insured shipments where trade credit insurance could have been used, the International Credit Insurance and Surety Association (ICISA) says. Only 13.2% of covered shipments worldwide were protected by trade credit insurance, with the private sector providing more than two-thirds of the cover [vs one-third from official OECD ECAs which supposedly monitor the environmental and ethical elements of international trade?], ICISA says. It estimates world trade to have totalled US$100.6tn last year. In a report released last month, global reinsurer Swiss Re says it expects trade credit insurance premiums to grow to US$14.8bn in 2024 [i.e. .015% of the value of goods traded] despite a slowdown in global trade, which it puts down to rate increases.

https://www.gtreview.com/news/global/trade-credit-insurance-reaches-just-13-of-i...


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