FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 25, 2010
Marianna Ohe (202-565-3206)
STRONG>WASHINGTON, D.C. -- In its first long-term financing of U.S. exports to Slovakia, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) has approved a $20 million loan guarantee to back the sale of GE Energy's LM6000 Aeroderivative gas turbine generator set for a power plant in Povazska Bystrica, Slovakia.
The buyer of the generator, Istroenergo Group, A.S., a Slovakian engineering and construction firm, will transfer the equipment to end-user Teplaren A.S., a subsidiary of Grafobal Group Energy (GGE). It is Ex-Im Bank's first transaction with the Grafobal Group, a holding company involved in the energy, media, printing and packaging businesses.
Teplaren will use the equipment to modernize its existing central heating system to a combined heat and power station able to supply up to 60 megawatts of electricity, and heat approximately 8,000 households in the town of Povazska Bystrica.
This transaction can lead to more opportunities for U.S. capital-equipment and energy companies to successfully compete in Slovakia and other growing Central and Eastern European markets, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg. It will sustain U.S. jobs and can help Slovakia meet power needs.
Ex-Im Bank will guarantee 83 percent of the total financing requested. The Hungary Export-Import Bank (HEXIM), as co-financer, will guarantee the remainder of the loan. The guaranteed lender is the Private Export Funding Corp. (PEFCO), with GE Capital Markets Services as the arranger/advisor.
Ex-Im Bank is the official export-credit agency of the United States. The independent, self-sustaining federal agency has for over 76 years helped create and maintain U.S. jobs by financing the sales of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets throughout the world, by providing loan guarantees, export-credit insurance and direct loans. In fiscal 2009, overall Ex-Im Bank financings came to $21 billion, while authorizations for small business exporters totaled $4.36 billion, both historic highs. In the first four months of fiscal 2010, the Bank authorized a record $10.9 billion in loans, guarantees, and insurance - more than three times the amount authorized in the same period of fiscal 2009.