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 September 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.

  • Rich country ECAs sink billions into oil and gas despite Cop26 pledge
  • ECA Market Booming Worldwide
  • Export Finance for Future (E3F) and accountability
  • Trade Credit Insurance Market Report by Development Factors 2031
  • UK, Japanese and Italian ECAs support projects in Africa
  • Uganda in talks with Chinese ECA for pipeline funds after Western banks cave in
  • FSD Africa Investments Pledges $19.5 Million to Fortify Africa’s Climate Resilience
  • UAE pledges $4.5bn for Africa clean energy projects
  • USEXIM to Invest $5 Billion in Space Industry
  • Ukraine’s ECA-backed exports hit record high
  • US Exim approves first domestic manufacturing deal
  • Could ECAs finance cleaner steel & industrial hubs?
  • Hungary Exim wins World Bank support for ING loan
  • Canada restricts subsidies, but delays plan to end billions more in ECA fossil fuel finance

Rich country ECAs sink billions into oil and gas despite Cop26 pledge

(Climate Change News, Broadstairs UK, 7 September 2023) The US, Germany and Italy have been accused of backsliding on a Glasgow promise to end public subsidies to fossil fuel projects overseas. They are among rich countries providing billions of dollars of public subsidies to fossil fuel projects abroad this year despite promises to end this support. Export credit and development agencies from six developed nations have approved $4.4 billion in funding for oil and gas projects overseas since the start of 2023, research from campaigning group Oil Change International shows. More than half of the total financing has been provided by the United States ($1.5 billion) and Italy ($1.2 billion), followed by Germany, Japan, the Netherlands and Switzerland. Common Dreams notes that: "The U.S., Italy, and Germany are going rogue by backtracking on their commitment to end international public finance for fossil fuels," said one analyst. "There needs to be accountability."


ECA Market Booming Worldwide

(openPR, 7 September 2023) The latest study published by HTF MI Research on the "Import Export Insurance Market'' evaluates market size, trend and forecast to 2029. Some of the Major Companies covered in this Research are Atradius (Netherlands), Euler Hermes/Allianz Trade (France), Coface (France), Zurich Insurance Group (Switzerland), Chubb Limited (Switzerland), Allianz SE (Germany), Liberty Mutual Insurance (United States), Tokio Marine Holdings (Japan), AXA XL (France), QBE Insurance Group (Australia), Sompo Holdings (Japan), AIG (American International Group) (United States). According to HTF Market Intelligence, the Global Import Export Insurance market [is] to witness a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 8.4%, an increase by USD 7.94 Bn, during the forecast period of 2023-2028. Global Import Export Insurance Market Breakdown by Application (Manufacturing, Agriculture, Energy, Retail, Others) by Type (Export Credit Insurance, Marine Insurance, Political Risk Insurance, International Product Liability, Others) by Organization Size (Large Enterprise, Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs)) and by Geography (North America, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific, MEA).


Export Finance for Future (E3F) and accountability

(LinkedIn, Sunnyvale CA, Unknown date) An international coalition working to harness public export finance as a key driver in the fight against climate change. [ECA Watch note: Unfortunately E3F uses the LinkedIN professional network which relies on professional contacts, does not display dates for postings, and uses a format which is much less public than web page or Facebook networks, thus much less open to public information sharing and accountability.] E3F was launched by 7 European countries at ministerial level in April 2021 to align public export finance with climate goals. More specifically, the coalition aims to increase support for sustainable and climate-friendly projects and accelerate the progressive phasing out of fossil fuel related projects. With this, the coalition members, currently composed of the governments of Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, reaffirm their commitment to contribute to the climate goals of the Paris Agreement and to promote consistent international standards and pursue ambitious multilateral action. All current members are also signatories to the COP26 statement on international public support for the clean energy transition. From the E3F LinkedIn page: "Denmark is pleased to announce that Denmark will take over the chairpersonship of the Export Finance for Future (E3F) Coalition for the coming year. The coalition warmly thanks Germany for their efforts and for successfully steering E3F through the last year, maintaining our commitments and ambition through the energy crisis. There is a solid foundation for moving E3F further, and Denmark looks forward to taking up the mantle. The focus for the coming year will be on ensuring the continued credibility and increasing the visibility of the coalition, fostering dialogue with non-members and stakeholders, deepening the coalition and strengthening the coherence with other government initiatives." German NGO World Economy, Ecology & Development (WEED) has urged Denmark within E3F to "push all members to adopt ambitious local stratgies to end export finance for fossil fuels! - where Germany failed during their chairpersonship!"


Trade Credit Insurance Market Report by Development Factors 2031

(Benzinga, Detroit, 11 September 2023) The Trade Credit Insurance Market Insights of 2023 is an extensive and comprehensive report that provides a complete analysis of the market's size, shares, revenues, various segments, drivers, trends, growth, and development. The Trade Credit Insurance market is expected to grow annually by (CAGR 2023 - 2031). The Trade Credit Insurance market report is a striking 131 pages that includes a comprehensive table of contents, a list of figures, tables, and charts, as well as extensive analysis. This report offers valuable insights to industry stakeholders and vendors. The report highlights company profiles, financial metrics, market demands, technological innovations, and regional developments. [A single user license costs US$4000.]


UK, Japanese and Italian ECAs support projects in Africa

Zawya, Dubai, 7 September 2023) The UK and Japanese export credit agencies (ECAs) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to support their future collaboration on sustainable projects worldwide, especially in Africa. The terms of the agreement will guide the UK Export Finance (UKEF) and Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI) to collaborate on projects around the world – especially in Africa and the Indo-Pacific – which draw on UK and Japanese supply chains, the UKEF said in a statement. With a focus on export credit policy and co-investment projects, the partnership between the two ECAs will support the international competitiveness of UK and Japanese businesses as they seek to access global trading opportunities, the statement added. In other news, The director of Mozambique NGO Justiça Ambiental has charged that "rich countries are addicted to fossil fuels" and emphasized the importance of fighting against oil and gas projects, noting that "If there isn't a strong backlash, the rest of the world will follow soon and then there will be no chance for vulnerable countries like Mozambique to deal with the ravages of the climate crisis... Instead of supporting Mozambique to develop clean and just energy sources, these countries are pushing Mozambique down a fossil fuel development pathway." The director took aim at Italian export credit finance agency SACE for its involvement in "the gas rush in northern Mozambique, which has led to human rights abuses, devastated lives, increased conflict and militarization, and oppression of communities, journalists, and civil society."


Uganda in talks with Chinese ECA for pipeline funds after Western banks cave in

(Reuters, Kampala, 25 September 2023) Uganda is in advanced talks with Chinese export credit agency SINOSURE to provide credit for its crude oil pipeline after pressure from environmentalists forced some Western banks to recoil from the project, a top official said on Monday. The 1,445-kilometre (898-mile) East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) is planned to help Uganda export its crude from oilfields in the country's west via a port on Tanzania's Indian Ocean coast. It is co-owned by the government of Uganda, France's TotalEnergies (TTEF.PA), China's CNOOC (0883.HK) and Tanzania's Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC). The project will cost $5 billion, including the cost of credit and 40% of the money will be raised through debt while the rest will come from equity. Activists contend that the project violates the Equator Principles, a set of standards adopted by these specific lenders for assessing, determining, and managing social and environmental risk for project finance. In addition to Kampala, London, Paris, and New York, the Eacop demonstrations also took place in 18 other cities, including Tokyo, Johannesburg, Frankfurt, Brussels, Sendai, Hoima, Nagoya, Toronto, Fukuoka, Goma, Cape Town, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Vancouver.


FSD Africa Investments Pledges $19.5 Million to Fortify Africa’s Climate Resilience

(Techinafrica, South Africa, 8? September 2023) [A somewhat confused article apparently about an investment in un-named Latin American ride sharing services by an African investment fund backed by un-named ECAs.] "To enhance mobility and environmental sustainability in Latin America, FSD Africa Investments (FSDAi) [a UK International Development funded regional programme operating in more than 30 countries from its Kenya base] has forged a significant alliance with the [South African] ride-hailing service [app] InDrive." [An Uber cum taxi competitor now operating in 6 other African countries]. FSDAi’s investments in Acre Impact Capital’s Export Finance Fund I, the Catalyst Fund, and Camco’s Spark Energy Services underscore the institution’s commitment to collaborating with local investment managers and venture capitalists. The goal is to champion environmentally-conscious enterprises that might otherwise face challenges securing the necessary capital. [Support for privately owned automobile services is environmentally conscious?]


UAE pledges $4.5bn for Africa clean energy projects

(Argus Media, Nairobi, 5 September 2023) The UAE will provide $4.5bn in finance to accelerate the development of clean energy projects in Africa, UN climate summit Cop 28 president-designate Sultan al-Jaber said today at the Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi. Abu Dhabi's state-owned renewables firm Masdar, Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, Etihad Credit Insurance, the country's export credit agency and Amea Power — a Dubai-based renewable-energy company — will provide the funds, al-Jaber said. Africa development bank's Africa50 investment platform will act as a strategic partner to help identify initial projects. The pledge aims to "catalyse at least an additional $12.5bn from multilateral, public and private sources," al-Jaber said. "This initiative will target countries with clear transition plans, robust regulatory frameworks and a real commitment to putting the necessary grid infrastructure in place," he added. Africa's annual climate finance needs amount to $250bn, according to the African Development Bank, but the continent only receives 12pc of the total, and less than 2pc is going to adaptation, according to al-Jaber.


USEXIM to Invest $5 Billion in Space Industry

(CNBC, Paris, 11 September 2023) The U.S. export credit agency is working through a $5 billion pipeline of applications related to the space industry, as companies look to fund projects in orbit in a tighter capital market. The Export-Import Bank of the United States, or EXIM, is no stranger to financing space projects such as satellite and rocket products. EXIM generally sees more applications during tougher economic times, as the previous bulk of its financing for the space sector came between 2010 and 2015. “In our pipeline related to this industry, about $1.3 billion are likely to come to fruition within a year and another $4 billion that we’re looking at are a little less further along,” Judith Pryor, EXIM’s first vice president and vice chair of the board of directors, said on Monday at the 2023 World Satellite Business Week conference.


Ukraine’s ECA-backed exports hit record high

(Global Trade Review, London, 30 August 2023) The export credit agency (ECA) of Ukraine insured loans for exports worth more than Hrn1bn (US$27.1mn) for the first time last month, as the agency continues to increase the scale of its support for trade from the war-torn country. The Ukrainian ECA was founded in 2018, began operations in 2022 and in 2021 covered Hrn12.5mn in financing for exporters. A total of 10 exporters were supported across the country. The largest individual loan, for Hrn20mn, was issued in Kyiv. The three banks that have provided the most in loans in 2022/23 are two major Ukrainian banks, Oschadbank and Ukrgasbank, and Vienna-headquartered Raiffeisen Bank. They issued loans of Hrn256.3mn, Hrn229mn and Hrn210mn, respectively, financing exports worth a total of Hrn5.33bn. In July, Russia withdrew from the Black Sea Grain Initiative, an agreement that saw the safe shipment of grain from Ukraine, and so far no new deal has been successfully negotiated. The news also comes weeks after the Ukrainian central bank said it was removing a ban on ECA-backed loan repayments, put in place amid Russia’s invasion of the country. The National Bank of Ukraine had barred the repayment of principal and interest on loans from foreign lenders. Following the invasion, several ECAs suspended coverage for Ukrainian trade, and some claimed the ban on overseas payments was the reason. While several countries, including Canada, the UK and the US, kept their coverage and credit limits for exports to Ukraine, in September 2022 the agency asked ECAs to restore their pre-war coverage limits.


US Exim approves first domestic manufacturing deal

(Global Trade Review, London, 5 September 2023) The Export-Import Bank of the United States (US Exim) has approved the first transaction under its domestic manufacturing programme, a direct loan of US$4.7mn to a Pennsylvania-based technology firm. The transaction comes more than a year after US Exim formally launched its Make More in America Initiative (MMIA), which in the time since has made available the agency’s range of medium and long-term loans for the establishment or expansion of US-based manufacturing facilities with an “export nexus”. US Exim had been recommended to explore the possibility of creating such a product a year earlier, following a 100-day White House review of supply chains for critical products, such as minerals and semiconductors.


Could ECAs finance cleaner steel & industrial hubs?

(Clean Technica, Bradenton FL, 15 August 2023) The climate finance community should be watching Sweden. Swedish steelmaker H2 Green Steel (H2GS), founded in 2020 to produce (using renewable hydrogen), is completing a landmark €5 billion+ fundraise for its first plant in Boden, near the Arctic Circle in northern Sweden, an industrial project finance template is taking shape and it’s important: heavy industry produces 30% of global carbon emissions and steelmaking is 7% alone. Export credit agencies may be less nimble than private lenders, due to the government oversight and political constraints they must operate within. But for these first-of-a-kind deals, they are proving to be powerful allies, both as debt guarantors and direct lenders. In the H2GS deal, Swedish ECA Svensk Exportkredit participated in the €3.3 billion senior debt tranche alongside commercial banks. Meanwhile, the core ECA, Allianz-owned Euler Hermes, committed to guaranteeing €1.5 billion of the senior debt.


Hungary Exim wins World Bank support for ING loan

(Global Trade Review, London, 13 September 2023) The Hungarian Export-Import Bank (Hungary Exim) will boost sustainable lending after securing a €300mn loan extended by investment bank ING and covered by the investment insurance arm of the World Bank. The World Bank’s Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (Miga) issued €386mn in guarantees to ING, covering the Dutch lender’s principal, interest and other financing costs on the debt. Hungary Exim says it will use the credit line to launch new green financing products and primarily to support SMEs, although some “larger” sustainable projects may also benefit.


Canada restricts subsidies, but delays plan to end billions more in ECA fossil fuel finance

(Above Ground, Ottawa, 4 August 2023) Ottawa has taken a major step forward towards ending another significant component of its fossil fuel support. It announced last week a policy that makes Canada the first G20 country to publish a plan for delivering on the group’s 2009 commitment to phase out so-called “inefficient” subsidies to the fossil fuel sector. Under the new policy, federal support identified as a fossil fuel subsidy can no longer be provided unless it fulfills one of six criteria. Unfortunately, these criteria provide for significant exemptions that may allow fossil fuel companies peddling false climate solutions to benefit from billions of dollars a year in tax breaks and public spending. For example, Ottawa will still provide subsidies that facilitate “abated production processes” – language often used by oil companies to describe their use of carbon capture technology to reduce emissions from their own operations. This ignores the much larger quantity released when the fuels they produce are burned. Perhaps most significantly, the new policy leaves intact public financing from Export Development Canada (EDC), which Ottawa – contentiously – doesn’t consider a subsidy. Last year alone, EDC provided roughly $20 billion in financing to oil and gas companies, mostly in the form of loans, guarantees and insurance. This represents the overwhelming bulk of Canada’s financial support for the sector. Ottawa has pledged to “develop a plan” to phase out this financing as well. As of January the government has, under its Glasgow policy, barred EDC from providing new, direct financing for most oil and gas activities abroad. Yet this doesn’t touch the majority of EDC’s fossil fuel finance, which supports the industry’s operations in Canada.


What's New for August 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.

  • OECD Modernisation of the Arrangement on Export Credits
  • Australian Government sued for failing to report the climate and biodiversity impacts of subsidising fossil fuel projects
  • Green Groups Call on EXIM to Reject PNG LNG Project
  • US fossil fuel hypocrisy is betraying the planet
  • The BRICS come of age [But what role for ECAs?]
  • EU’s €45bn plan to tackle Latam productivity woes
  • Feet to the Fire: Big Oil and the Climate Crisis
  • India's Reliance Jio ties up $2.2 bn funding from Sweden's EKN for 5G equipment
  • New Chinese growth drivers sought to boost exports amid weak global demand
  • Sinosure’s Country Blacklist?
  • Russian ECA plans special loans for African companies
  • Four Emirati women lead UAE’s powerful financial institutions
  • UKEF to provide £192m loan guarantee to boost Ukraine nuclear capabilities
  • Arafura Rare Earths offered EDC and Euler Hermes support
  • Euler Hermes to back €1.29bn financing for Angolan solar infrastructure development
  • EDC trying to reclaim $347 million insurance payout to Suncor linked to Libya unrest

OECD Modernisation of the Arrangement on Export Credits

(Sullivan&Cromwell LLP, New York, 10 August 2023) On July 14, the OECD published the revised text of the Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits (the “Arrangement”). This forms part of the landmark modernisation of the Arrangement, as previewed in March of this year. The revised text of the Arrangement is intended to allow export credit agencies from participating countries to support a wider range of climate-friendly and sustainable projects on more flexible terms. The main changes are focused on (1) expanding the scope of “green projects” that benefit from more favourable terms; (2) extending repayment terms and introducing greater repayment flexibility; (3) simplifying the Arrangement; and (4) introducing a more robust transparency regime. [As noted in our June 2023 What's New, the agreement does nothing to restrict oil and gas financing. OECD ECAs supported fossil fuel exports by an average of $41 billion from 2018 to 2020, almost five times more than their clean energy support ($8.5 billion) over the same period. It remains to be seen if allowing for more climate friendly and sustainable finance actually makes it happen.]


Australian Government sued for failing to report the climate and biodiversity impacts of subsidising fossil fuel projects

(Jubilee Australia, NSW, 18 July 2023) Jubilee Australia, a human rights and environmental organisation, has filed legal proceedings this morning (18th July) in the Federal Court of Australia against federal government agencies that subsidise new fossil fuel projects but don’t disclose the full environmental impacts of those activities. The claim is against Export Finance Australia (EFA) which is Australia’s export credit agency, and the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), a $7bn fund for infrastructure in northern Australia. Both provide taxpayer-subsidised finance for risky new fossil fuel and related projects that would otherwise not go ahead. “There are very real fears that without clearer climate commitments, EFA and NAIF could fund infrastructure in Darwin designed to support a massive expansion of fossil gas – such as Middle Arm, or to subsidise some of the world’s largest fossil fuel companies such as TotalEnergies and ExxonMobil’s Papua LNG project in Papua New Guinea, similar to what EFA has previously done,” Luke Fletcher Director of Jubilee Australia said.


Green Groups Call on EXIM to Reject PNG LNG Project

(Common Dreams, Portland, 29 August 2023) More than two dozen advocacy groups from Papua New Guinea, the Asia Pacific region, and the United States on Tuesday urged the U.S. export credit agency to reject a liquefied natural gas project that they warned “presents significant financial risks and opportunity costs, as well as harmful climate impacts.” The groups — including the Center for Environmental Law and Community Rights Inc. (CELCOR), Food & Water Watch, Friends of the Earth (FOE) United States, Global Witness, Oil Change International (OCI), and Sierra Club — wrote to U.S. Export-Import Bank (EXIM) Chair Reta Jo Lewis about the Papua LNG project led by TotalEnergies. The coalition argued that approving Papua LNG not only would contradict the Biden administration’s 2021 pledge to end new public support for fossil fuel energy projects abroad and “further position the United States as an international laggard on climate, but would further jeopardize international climate goals, risk $13 billion USD in stranded assets, and put Pacific frontline communities at further environmental, social, and economic risk.”


US fossil fuel hypocrisy is betraying the planet

(Al Jazeera, Washington, 30 July 2023) While the president's rhetoric aligns with global climate promises, his administration has approved massive fossil fuel projects. Ahead of its Climate Ambition Summit in September, the United Nations is calling on global leaders to phase out fossil fuels. US President Joe Biden is painfully falling behind on this agenda and must urgently get back on track to maintain any credibility in these climate discussions. As we suffer through extreme heat in the US and across the globe, President Biden has been protecting fossil fuel profits instead of people.  From the Willow Project in Alaska to Gulf LNG exports, Biden props up dangerous oil and gas projects and the corporations that value their bottom line over our future... skipping important permitting processes meant to protect people and the environment, The latest reports from the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) show that maintaining a 50 percent chance of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (34.7 degrees Fahrenheit) requires an immediate end to investments in new coal, oil and gas production and hazardous liquified fossil gas (LNG) infrastructure. While Canada, the United Kingdom, and France have published policies keeping their promises to stop international funding for fossil fuels, the United States has refused to publish a policy.


The BRICS come of age [But what role for ECAs?]

(Project Syndicate, Cairo, 18 August 2023) by Hippolyte Fofack, Chief Economist and Director of Research at the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank). Given the BRICS’ economic success, more than 40 countries have shown an interest in joining the group and 22 have formally applied for membership. Expansion, trade and investment facilitation will be high on the agenda of the group's summit scheduled for August 22-24 in Johannesburg. They include many issues on which the bloc’s views diverge from those of the G7, such as sustainable development, global governance reform (especially reform of the IMF), and de-dollarization. An enlarged grouping could deepen trade and settlement in local currencies, accelerate de-dollarization, and lead the transition to a more multipolar world. The economic potential of Brazil, Russia, India, and China, the group – called the BRICS since the addition of South Africa – contributes more to global GDP (in purchasing-power-parity terms) than the G7. Since 2014, Russia’s trade with G7 countries has fallen by more than 36%, owing to unprecedented Western sanctions, while its trade with the other BRICS has increased by more than 121%. The International Monetary Fund forecasts that China and India alone will generate about half of global growth this year.  With geopolitical tensions running high, and the weaponization of the dollar for national-security purposes continuing to escalate, the BRICS have taken on new significance, offering trade diversion and other relief to weaken the effectiveness of sanctions and fast-tracking the transition to a multipolar world. Read the Summit Declaration here.


EU’s €45bn plan to tackle Latam productivity woes

(Financial Times, London, 31 July 2023) The European Commission’s recently released EU–LAC Global Gateway Investment Agenda identifies 130 types of projects scattered across the region in which it plans to inject €45bn by 2027. The roadmap targets the green transition, digitalisation, education and health, with projects in Chile, Colombia and Panama. “This is an enormous opportunity for Latin America to increase [European] partnerships, and receive not just investment but also technology transfer and finance to transform these areas,” says José Manuel Salazar-Xirinachs, executive secretary of the UN’s Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). The €45bn programme consists of funds and guarantees provided by the EU, its member states, development finance institutions and export credit agencies.


Feet to the Fire: Big Oil and the Climate Crisis

(Energy Portal EU, London, 12 August 2023) The transition to clean energy is sparking intense debates as the climate crisis worsens. While cities, universities, and pension funds across the U.S. have divested from fossil fuels, the divestment movement has faced obstacles. In California, a bill that would have required public pension funds to stop investing in the largest oil, gas, and coal companies was killed for the second consecutive year. The bill’s rejection was due to concerns over its impact on workers’ retirement funds. Banks also play a significant role in the climate crisis by financing governments in dealing with its effects and lending to fossil fuel companies. The frequency and intensity of climate-induced emergencies have overwhelmed scientists and journalists, calling for a new approach to disaster reporting. Instead of treating each disaster as unrelated, climate change should be recognized as the connecting factor among them. Germany recently released a draft policy for the provision of guarantees in the energy sector, contradicting its pledge to end international financing for coal, oil, and gas projects made at COP26. Germany’s export credit agency’s policy raises questions about its commitment to ending fossil fuel funding.


India's Reliance Jio ties up $2.2 bn funding from Sweden's EKN for 5G equipment

(Business India Today, Noida, 6 August 2023) "Reliance and its subsidiary Jio Infocomm JIL tied up its first ever Swedish Export Credit Agency (EKN) supported facilities of $2.2 billion equivalent making it the largest cover ever provided by EKN for a deal to a private corporate globally," Reliance Industries said, adding that the proceeds of the facilities shall be utilised to finance the equipment and services in relation to JIL's pan-India 5G roll out. Jio has committed to an investment of Rs 2 lakh crore to fulfill its ambitious pan-India 5G rollout plan, the company said. Jio started 5G network rollouts in October 2022. "Jio has launched its True 5G services across 2,300-plus cities/towns as of March 2023 and targets to achieve pan-India coverage by December 2023," the annual report said.


New Chinese growth drivers sought to boost exports amid weak global demand

(China Daily, Beijing, 9 August 2023) China's foreign trade grew steadily in the first seven months of the year but exports in July declined at a steeper-than-expected pace amid subdued global consumer demand, which highlights the need to roll out stronger policy steps to further boost the country's foreign trade, experts said on Tuesday. Li Dawei, researcher at the Chinese Academy of Macroeconomic Research's Institute for International Economy, said the authorities should offer services such as exchange rate hedging, process export tax rebates faster, expand the scale of export credit insurance services and enhance customs clearance to foster new drivers of export growth amid falling global demand for the country's traditional export products such as electronic items, clothing and footwear.


Sinosure’s Country Blacklist?

(Lexology, London, 22 August 2023) China’s Sinosure, a major (virtually the only) provider of export credit insurance to China’s factories, plays an instrumental role in facilitating trade between Chinese suppliers and international buyers. However, there’s an under-discussed aspect of their operations that is detrimental for certain countries: the so-called “country blacklist”. Sinosure has a well-documented history of denying (via its infamous blacklist) export credit insurance to companies with outstanding payments to Chinese suppliers. One list outrightly refuses insurance for buyers hailing from certain countries. Though it’s tricky to pinpoint the exact countries on this list, via discussions with industry stakeholders, past Sinosure employees, and clients I have compiled the below list of probable countries allegedly sidelined by Sinosure. The accuracy of this list is dubious. It is not based on any official Sinosure documentation or communications. However, the persistent rumors surrounding this list should not be ignored.


Russian ECA plans special loans for African companies

(Punch Nigeria, Lagos, 29 July 2023) President Vladimir Putin of Russia says his country will offer preferential loans to enable African companies to buy industrial goods from the European country and enjoy after-sales services. He said his government was devising a leasing mechanism tailored for Africa, and that the Russian Agency for Export Credit and Investment Insurance would provide insurance for the planned preferential loans. The Russian leader made the disclosure during the ongoing Russia-Africa Summit and Russia-Africa Economic and Humanitarian Forum holding in St. Petersburg, Russia. According to him, the Russia government is also about to establish a dedicated investment fund for co-financing infrastructure projects in the African continent.


Four Emirati women lead UAE’s powerful financial institutions

(Gulf Business, Dubai, 28 August 2023) With a career spanning nearly two decades, Raja Al Mazrouei joined Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI) as a board member in January 2022 and became the export credit agency’s managing director and CEO in November 2022 and January 2023, respectively. Other women recognized on Emirati Women’s Day include: Hana Al Rostamani, Group CEO, First Abu Dhabi Bank; Rola Abu Manneh, CEO, Standard Chartered UAE and Maryam Buti Al Suwaidi, CEO, Securities and Commodities Authority


UKEF to provide £192m loan guarantee to boost Ukraine nuclear capabilities

(Sky News, London, 23 Augut 2023) Energy secretary Grant Shapps has visited Ukraine to announce fresh financial support for its nuclear fuel supply in a bid to end its reliance on Russia. The UK will provide a £192m loan guarantee to Ukraine's national nuclear company, Energoatom via the UK's export credit agency, UK Export Finance. Through the deal, UK-headquartered Urenco will supply Energoatom with uranium enrichment services that are vital for nuclear fuel, with nuclear power generating over half of the country's electricity. The government hopes this will strengthen Ukraine's energy security and help end the country's dependence on nuclear services and nuclear fuel from Russia, as well as further isolate Vladmir Putin.


Arafura Rare Earths offered EDC and Euler Hermes support

(AUManufacturing, No Address Provided, 31 July 2023) Arafura Rare Earths pushed ahead with engineering work and construction of its giant Nolans rare earths project in the Northern Territory in the latest quarter despite a softening market for the critical metals. Arafura has received a letter of interest from Canadian export agency Export Development Canada for the provision of up to US$300 million in debt financing. Nolans has support from the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility of $150 million and in principle support for a loan guarantee of up to US$600 million from German export credit agency Euler Hermes.


Euler Hermes to back €1.29bn financing for Angolan solar infrastructure development

(Bizcommunity, Cape Town, 31 July 2023) Standard Chartered plans to provide the Angolan Ministry of Finance €1.29bn in financing to construct solar photovoltaic electricity distribution infrastructure. The financing is backed by German export credit agency Euler Hermes. Of the €1.29bn total, €1.2bn is supported through Euler Hermes and the remaining €0.09bn is a commercial loan. The loan will fund 48 hybrid photovoltaic generation systems with energy storage that act as ‘mini grids’ and operate autonomously and aim to provide access to 100% renewable electricity for communities not connected to the national electricity grid.


EDC trying to reclaim $347 million insurance payout to Suncor linked to Libya unrest

(Bowen Island Undercurrent, BC, 2 August 2023) The federal government is trying to reclaim nearly $350 million in insurance paid to Suncor Energy Inc. by Export Development Canada in the wake of political unrest in Libya. The oil giant claimed $300 million in risk mitigation payments for losses linked to Libyan energy assets after fighting between rival political factions spread to the country's oil crescent region in 2015, a Federal Court judge said in a ruling this week. The total — $347 million with interest — was determined by an arbitrator in 2019. But Export Development Canada, which insures against losses caused by political violence, argues that Suncor's oil production facilities still deliver returns for the Calgary-based company. The insurance claim was paid under a policy underwritten by Export Development Canada for Petro-Canada in 2006, which Suncor then came into following their merger in 2009.


What's New for July 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.

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Civil societies say Germany's plan for export credit guarantees violates climate commitments

(Reuters, Berlin, 25 July 2023) Environmental groups on Tuesday criticized Germany's draft policy on export credit guarantees as too vague and soft on financing for natural gas projects, as Berlin attempts a balancing act between climate protection and energy security. Germany supports exports by offering guarantees for non-payment caused by economic and political factors, helping companies to secure political backing for their projects and better financing terms. On Monday, the economy ministry published its first draft guidelines for such guarantees for the energy, transport and industry sectors, tying them to climate protection targets. The guidelines set three categories for future projects: a positive green for projects contributing to achieving climate targets that would be eligible for government support, a neutral white for projects that do not make a significant contribution to climate goals but would still receive support, and a climate-damaging red to be excluded from such guarantees. But the draft drew heavy criticism from environmental organizations, which argued that Germany was breaking its international commitment to ending public financing for fossil fuels by the end of 2022, by offering too many exemptions for natural gas projects. "These plans highlight the German governments' shameless disrespect of its international commitments and climate goals," Martin Kaiser, executive director of Greenpeace Germany, said. At the 2021 United Nations COP26 climate summit, 20 countries, including Germany, promised to stop public funding for overseas fossil fuel projects by the end of 2022. Environmental groups have raised concerns about Germany’s policy draft on export credit guarantees, stating that it is too vague and lenient regarding the financing of natural gas projects.


Biden breaks climate pledge again with new EXIM LNG approval

(Price of Oil, Washington, 18 July 2023) Last  Friday, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) — the official export credit agency of the U.S.— insured USD 400 million in revolving credit facilities for global commodities trader Trafigura. The newly approved transaction will allow Trafigura Pte. to purchase liquefied natural gas (LNG) from U.S. exporters to sell primarily to European buyers. “It is alarming that Biden continues to break climate commitments to end international public finance for fossil fuels. Instead, he uses public money to prop up the dirty industry that fuels climate disaster and harms communities, while we suffer record breaking extreme heat. “Other countries like Canada, the UK, and France have kept their promise to end international public finance for fossil fuels, and are already shifting billions of dollars towards clean energy. There needs to be accountability for signatories like the Biden administration for going back on their word.”


Italy’s SACE breaks climate promise with $500 million guarantee for Peru oil refinery

(Price of Oil, Washington, 11 July 2023) Italy’s export credit agency SACE has approved a $500 million guarantee in loans for the Talara oil refinery in Peru, once again breaking their commitment to end their international public finance for fossil fuels by the end of 2022. SACE is the biggest public financier of fossil fuels in Europe. Between 2016 and 2021, SACE supported EUR 13.7 billion in fossil fuels. A study by Oil Change International last year revealed that SACE is considering financing for international fossil fuel projects with emissions equivalent to more than 3 times Italy’s entire annual emissions. At the UN COP26 climate summit in 2021, 39 countries and financial institutions, including Italy, signed the Glasgow Statement, committing signatories to end their direct international public financing for fossil fuels by the end of 2022. Oil Change International’s Public Finance for Energy Database shows that G20 countries and the major multilateral development banks (MDBs) provided at least USD 63 billion per year in international public finance for oil, gas, and coal projects between 2018 and 2020. This is 2.5 more than their support for renewable energy.


Who are the major financiers of Brazilian FPSOs?

(BN Americas, Santiago, 7 July 2023) Although the energy transition and ESG issues are gaining traction, many banks and credit export entities keep financing oil and gas undertakings, such as floating production storage and offloading units (FPSOs) ordered by Brazil’s federal oil firm Petrobras. FPSOs are used for the production and processing of hydrocarbons, and for the storage of oil. This situation will not change much as demand for hydrocarbons will remain and a significant portion of oil companies’ decarbonization capital expenses comes from oil and gas revenues. Furthermore, the geopolitical context, with the war in Ukraine and gas supply in Europe, has reignited energy security concerns. Meanwhile, financial products like green and sustainability linked bonds, developed to support companies that do not operate in totally green areas, do not yield higher returns. According to Daniela Davila, a partner at Vieira Rezende law firm, new FPSOs are mainly financed by Asian financial institutions (banks and leasing houses) and export credit agencies from countries such as China, Japan, South Korea and Singapore, where shipyards that build the hulls/modules of the units are located. Some banks, such as BNP Paribas and HSBC, have announced their exit from this industry, while New York-based Nordea has shown less appetite for oil and gas. On the other hand, traditional offshore players like Norway’s DNB or Germany’s Deutsche Bank continue to support the sector. CNOOC and CNODC are also Petrobras’ partners in the Mero field, which will receive the Sepetiba unit this year and Alexandre de Gusmão in 2025. Banks from Japan, like Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Japan Bank for International Corporation, often work with Japan's Modec, which signed several charter contracts of FPSOs under construction with Petrobras and one for Equinor’s Bacalhau field. Among other financial institutions with tradition in FPSO financing are the UK’s Standard Chartered Bank; DBS Bank, United Overseas Bank, Clifford Capital and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation from Singapore; China Investment Corporation; Korea Development Bank (South Korea); Maybank and CIMB (Malaysia); Société Générale and Natixis (France); and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (Japan). Export credit agencies in the sector include China’s Sinosure, Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (Japan) and Sace (Italy).


Coal-project financing outside of China hits 12-year low

(Resiliance, US-UK-AU, 11 July 2023) The global energy crisis fueled by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine sparked widespread fears of a “return to coal” – yet, to date, there is scant evidence of this. Indeed, in the world of project financing, any supposed rebound has been illusory. The financing of coal power outside of China has now hit its lowest point since 2010, according to our latest figures in the Global Coal Project Finance Tracker (GCPFT). We found that for every $1 in coal project lending that reached financial close in 2022, another $14 earmarked for previously proposed projects was stopped. But, despite a myriad of economic, political and social headwinds that have slowed funding to the coal sector, project lending continues to display resilience, particularly in southeast Asia.



(Environment Governance Institue, Seeta Uganda, 18 June 2023) Thirty four African environmental and human rights civil society organisations and 13 international supporters wrote the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) in anticipation of the 30th Afreximbank Annual General Meeting (AGM) from 18th to 21st June 2023 to urge stronger environmental commitments and actions within the financial sector, noting that the impacts of climate change are increasingly evident across the continent, with vulnerable communities and ecosystems bearing the brunt of these effects, and yet financial institutions such as Afreximbank have continued to invest in the further expansion of fossil fuel projects, thus accelerating the climate emergency. Specifically, they note with great concern that across the region, Afreximbank has continued to support a list of finance fossil fuel projects, which contravenes Article 2.1(c) of the Paris agreement signed by all 54 African countries which calls on parties to make finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and climate-resilient developments.


Guarantees for 1st Batch of Korea’s Arms Exports to Poland limit 2nd batch due to 40% limit on equity capital

(Business Korea, Seoul, 4 July 2023) According to the Export-Import Bank of Korea’s loan and guarantee data by item and country on July 3, the state-run bank provided 488.2 billion won (US$375.7 million) in financial support in the form of loans and guarantees to the defense sector in the first five months of this year. The total amount of loans and guarantees provided by Korea Eximbank to all industries in the same period was 31.8 trillion won. Export finance for Korea’s defense exports accounted for 1.6 percent of the total export finance provided by Korea Eximbank this year. According to the Enforcement Decree of the Export-Import Bank of Korea Act, the state-run lender cannot provide credit to the same borrower for more than 40 percent of its equity capital. Korea Eximbank will thus be unable to afford to give additional loans and guarantees to Poland if it provides US$5 billion in support for the first batch. The amount of loans and guarantees provided by Korea Eximbank in connection with purchases of weapons signed from 2018 to 2021 ranged from 100 to 500 billion won per year. But the figure surged to the two trillion won range in 2022. Guarantees with Poland accounted for most of the financial support, in the US$2 trillion range. In addition to Poland, Korea Eximbank provided defense-related financial support to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt, and Indonesia in 2022.


OECD amends export credit agency arrangement to boost green trade

(Institue of Export & Int'l Trade, london, 20 July 2023) The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has modernised the terms of its Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits to allow export credit agencies (ECAs) covered by the arrangement, which includes UKEF in the UK, to extend more generous incentives for climate-friendly transactions. The OECD describes the Arrangement as a “gentlemen’s agreement” between participants, which include Australia, Canada, the EU, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey, the UK and the US. Under the new rules, UKEF will now be allowed to offer better or longer repayment terms and more flexible finance structures for more renewable and green transactions. The new OECD arrangement follows a proposal from EU countries to do more to encourage green trade and climate-friendly transactions. It includes an expansion of the scope of green or climate-friendly projects eligible for longer repayment terms (eligible under the “Climate Change Sector Understanding” or CCSU). These include projects related to environmentally sustainable energy production; CO2 capture, storage, and transportation; transmission, distribution and storage of energy; clean hydrogen and ammonia; low emissions manufacturing; zero and low-emission transport; and clean energy minerals and ores.


Korea Eximbank prepares ECA Version 2.0 to boost exports

(Pulse News, Soeul, 24 July 2023) The Export-Import Bank of Korea (Korea Eximbank) is gearing up to upgrade its traditional model of financial support for promoting exports of Korean companies to a new level with the introduction of Export Credit Agency (ECA) Version 2.0. The  management strategy, termed ‘Beyond Core,’ aims to move beyond the core responsibility of supporting export expansion and evolve the ECA to adapt to the changing landscape. As part of this strategy, Korea Eximbank is considering activating limited investment operations. Similar to Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and Export Development Canada (EDC), which have set up investment-specific subsidiaries for development finance in developing countries


Piyush Goyal meets bankers on export credit to MSME exporters aiming to achieve $1 trillion merchandise exports

(India Times, New Delhi, 30 June 2023) Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal on Wednesday urged Indian banks to provide MSMEs with improved and inexpensive loans in order to meet the aim of 1 trillion dollars in product exports. According to the official statement, the meeting was convened by the Department of Commerce in coordination with Export Credit Guarantee Corporation Limited, (ECGC) in New Delhi. The Commerce and Industry Minister also mentioned at the meeting that the ECGC might look into expanding the programme that was proposed for nine banks to all banks in order to improve the export credit offtake for MSME Exporters. The Commerce and Industry Minister further informed that in the next four months, all the ECGC services would be digitised so that physical interaction can be minimised, it added.


£3.5bn UKEF support given to UK manufacturing, £1.1bn to construction in 2022/23

(PES Media, Rochester, 5 July 2023) UK Export Finance (UKEF) has published its annual results for 2022-23, which show the government’s export credit agency provided £3.5bn in new, direct support for UK manufacturing exporters in the last 12 months. The financing has directly supported up to 34,000 jobs in the sector. Overall, UKEF provided £6.5bn in new direct support to UK exporters in 2022-23. The financing, provided through loans, guarantees and insurance policies. UKEF spent £1.1bn supposedly supporting the UK construction sector last year.


Cedar Rose reaffirms its longstanding partnership with Sinosure

(ZAWYA, Dubai, 11 July 2023) Cedar Rose, a Cyprus and Dubai based corporate data, credit, risk and compliance firm, has reaffirmed its longstanding partnership covering over 25 years of relationship with Sinosure, a prominent Chinese state-owned enterprise responsible for export credit insurance. Cedar Rose's services play a crucial role in enabling comprehensive risk assessments for Sinosure. By leveraging Cedar Rose's Company Credit Reports and analysis services, Sinosure gains access to a wealth of data, including company identification, structure, and financial information. These services are obtained through Cedar Rose's API, with a particular focus on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Antoun Massaad, Co-Founder and CEO of Cedar Rose stressed that “The partnership between Cedar Rose and Sinosure has proven valuable in de-risking trading activities, supporting Sinosure’s risk management practices”.


India's ECGC may permit Sri Lanka to repay debt over 12 years

(MINT, New Delhi, 6 July 2023) India plans to allow Sri Lanka up to 12 years to repay its debt to help ease the financial burden on the island-nation, India’s Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) Ltd’s chairman-cum-managing director M.Senthilnathan said. Sri Lanka, facing its worst economic and political crisis in over seven decades, owes $7.1 billion to bilateral creditors— $3 billion owed to China, $2.4 billion to the Paris Club and $1.6 billion to India. Senthilnathan added that the National Export Insurance Account, managed by the ECGC, has received close to ₹4,500 crore worth of claims from exporters facing default in countries such as Sri Lanka, Zambia, Suriname and Ghana which faced extreme economic hardships after covid-19 and the Ukraine war. China has so far not joined the common platform of negotiators on Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring, though it has joined as an observer. In response to Sri Lanka’s request for long-term relief from major creditors like India, Japan, and China, the Chinese Exim Bank has agreed to grant Sri Lanka a two-year moratorium. It said it would support the country’s efforts to secure a $2.9 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund according to a report by Reuters.


UKEF is not building a multimillion pound railway line in Turkey

(Full Fact, London, 26 July 2023) Earlier this week Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham tweeted a screenshot of a UK government press release with the headline “UK announces £680m for new high-speed electric railway in Turkey”. Alongside the screenshot, Mr Burnham tweeted “So we can’t afford to keep our own ticket offices open - but we can afford to build a new line in Turkey?” Mr Burnham’s suggestion that the UK is financing a new railway line in Turkey is misleading—the £680 million figure used in the government press release refers to a loan provided by three banks (J.P. Morgan, ING Bank and BNP Paribas) which has been underwritten by the UK government’s export credit agency. The Italian, Austrian and Swiss export credit agencies are also providing reinsurance.


‘Wolves’ Clever Opportunism: Securing £99m UKEF Loan’

(G3 Football, Hillside NJ, 14 July 2023) Wolverhampton Wanderers have recently made headlines for securing a £99 million loan from the UK government. While some may view this as a sign of financial trouble, experts argue that it is a shrewd move by the club. In this article, we will explore the details of the loan, why Wolves qualified for it, and its implications for the club. The loan was obtained by Wolves last year from the government agency UK Export Finance (UKEF). UKEF is the UK’s export credit agency and aims to ensure that no viable UK export fails due to lack of finance or insurance. Wolves qualified for the loan because they export a range of goods and services, including merchandise and football through the Premier League’s overseas broadcast rights.