UKEF to forge closer trade ties with Central America

(Export Institute, Peterborough, 12 August 2021) UK Export Finance has signed a partnership with CABEI, Central America’s leading development bank, to encourage joint financing of major clean energy, infrastructure and construction projects. Trade between the UK and Central America was worth over £1.7 billion in 2020. At least £2.5bn is now available for new business in each of Guatemala, Honduras and Panama and £1.5bn for Costa Rica, El Salvador and Nicaragua. Countries that can benefit from the joint financing agreement include the Dominican Republic, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. The UK signed a continuity trade deal with Mexico in December and started talks on a £5bn trade deal in March that promised an ‘Aztec-Brexit bounce’. However, as reported in IOE&IT Daily Update, the deal was rendered obsolete after the EU signed a more generous and comprehensive deal between its 27 members states and Mexico. According to a report from the House of Lords’ International Agreements Committee, the UK could now have to wait another three years to catch-up with the EU in trade with Mexico.