UK Export Finance (UKEF) signed a historic partnership with the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI), yesterday (12 August 2021). CABEI is Central America’s leading development bank and the highest-rated borrower in Latin America.
Central America is home to some of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Trade between the UK and Central America was worth over £1.7 billion in 2020. The partnership will boost trade links and build on the UK-Central America trade association agreement which was signed in August 2019.
The agreement will encourage joint financing of major clean energy, infrastructure and construction projects in Central America, that will benefit from UK expertise. This cooperation agreement will also help finance major projects in Central America that involve UK exports. While also supporting businesses and jobs in the UK: a condition of UKEF’s involvement overseas, along with encouraging a closer relationship between the region and the UK.
Governments and businesses in Central America looking to raise funds to develop larger projects can benefit from working with CABEI while also accessing UKEF’s support, which aims to reduce the cost of financing for buyers of UK exports.
Last year, several countries in Central America benefitted from significant increases to UKEF’s country limits. This means that at least £2.5 billion is available for new business in each of Guatemala, Honduras and Panama and £1.5 billion for Costa Rica, El Salvador and Nicaragua.
UK Export Finance is the UK’s export credit agency which ensures that no viable UK export lacks finance or insurance from the private market, providing finance and insurance to help exporters win, fulfil and get paid for export contracts.
UKEF has a global network of 15 “International Export Finance Executives” (IEFEs) based in strategic trading markets across Latin America, South Asia, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Africa.
The IEFE network is a key driver of business development activity and local UKEF representatives in the region are Diego Folino based in Mexico City and Camilo Neira in Bogota.
CABEI was created in 1960 as the region’s financial arm for integration and development.
Its resources are often invested in projects with an impact on development to reduce poverty and inequalities, strengthen regional integration and the competitive insertion of its partners in the world economy, paying special attention to environmental sustainability. CABEI is based in Tegucigalpa with offices throughout Central America.
CABEI’s financial strength as the best credit in Latin America is supported by its high credit rating granted by the different international agencies: Standard & Poor’s with a rating of AA, Moody’s with a rating of Aa3, and Japan Credit Rating with AA.