DUBAI – Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI) and African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) signed a reciprocal reinsurance agreement to strengthen trade ties and boost exports between the two markets by providing trade credit insurance and trade finance solutions to businesses.
The deal follows the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) each entity signed in March last year to enhance the global competitiveness of exporters by improving their awareness of export credit and trade finance solutions and encouraging them to use risk mitigating tools against commercial and political risks.
Under the agreement, signed by Massimo Falcioni, CEO of Etihad Credit Insurance, and Manuel Moses, CEO of ATI, both organisations aim to support joint Emirati and African ventures in their own countries as well as their collaborative initiatives in other countries by sharing risks enabling these companies to grow trade globally.
Emphasising the significance of this strategic alliance, Falcioni said, "The UAE and Africa continent enjoy illustrious historic bilateral trade relations, and we at ECI are proud to reinforce that tradition with the support of ATI. This collaboration will provide UAE exporters real confidence to access the African region's diverse markets and resources with state-backed guarantees and safeguards against commercial and political uncertainties.”
Moses said, "This deal with ECI is a major step to strengthen our commitment to providing risk solutions to businesses, investors and commercial lenders interested in doing business in the UAE and Africa. Deepening our ongoing partnership, this reinsurance agreement will pave the way to unparalleled trading opportunities for businesses to improve their regional and global competitiveness."
Trade between the UAE and Africa has registered steady growth in recent years, with the Emirates becoming the fourth-biggest investor in Africa last year by investing in 71 different projects worth US$5.64 billion, according to research consultancy Knight Frank.
The UAE particularly seeks to capitalise on many high-growth sectors in African countries, including tourism, infrastructure, energy, transport, logistics, and IT.
Recently, ECI partnered with Israel Export Insurance (ASHRA) to provide buyer’s credit guarantees supporting a healthcare project in Ghana’s AED540 million, which involves the construction of four hospitals and a central medical storage facility in the country. The project aims to enhance the healthcare facilities of Ghana and is expected to benefit more than 3 million Ghanaian citizens.
ECI, in association with its British counterpart UK Export Finance (UKEF), has also supported a major initiative in the Republic of Senegal to bolster its national emergency response capabilities sector. The AED540 million (EUR140 million)-worth project, named Redco Project Senegal, is funded by Standard Chartered Bank along with partial direct lending by UKEF and is backed by ECI under a reinsurance agreement with UKEF worth AED348 million (EUR90 million).