FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE January 27, 2010
Phil Cogan (202-565-3200)
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and the National Aviation Company of India Ltd. (NACIL, also known as Air India) today held a signing ceremony to celebrate the $1.1 billion Ex-Im Bank-supported financing of U.S.- manufactured aircraft sold by The Boeing Co. to NACIL.
At a ceremony held at Ex-Im Bank headquarters, the financing documents were signed by Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg, NACIL Chairman and Managing Director Arvind Jadhav, and JPMorgan Chase & Co (New York) head of Global Structured Trade Finance, Astar Saleh. Also at the ceremony and representing the Government of India was Joint Secretary and Financial Advisor to the Ministry of Civil Aviation of India, Bharat Bhushan.
The Indian government has provided Ex-Im Bank with a payment guarantee of Air India's obligations under the financing backed by the full faith and credit of the Republic of India.
The fast-growing Indian market continues to offer enormous opportunities for U.S. exporters in many sectors, including transportation, said Chairman Hochberg at the ceremony. Air India, as one of Ex-Im Bank's largest customers, plays a major role in this very important trade relationship.
Air India acknowledges Ex-Im Bank's continuing support for the acquisition plan that Air India has undertaken to rejuvenate its fleet. This support has enabled Air India to raise finances for acquiring these latest state-of-the-art technology aircraft at competitive rates of interest as compared to commercial financing. We look forward to a continued relationship with Ex-Im Bank on future Boeing aircraft financings, said NACIL Chairman and Managing Director Arvind Jadhav.
Today's transactions represent the second partial conversions of two Ex-Im Bank preliminary commitments to final commitments. The final commitments were approved by Ex-Im Bank's board of directors in June 2009. Ex-Im Bank is guaranteeing loans extended by JP Morgan Chase & Co.
Although the financing is structured as a combined sovereign-guaranteed and aircraft-secured financing, Ex-Im Bank's decision to support the financing for NACIL is based principally upon the full faith and credit obligation of the Republic of India under the sovereign guarantee.
The financing will support the sale of Boeing B777-200LRs and B777-300ERs to be operated by Air India and B737-800s to be operated by Air India Charters Ltd. These purchases represent the third phase of Air India's 68-aircraft fleet renewal plan. Ex-Im Bank previously approved a $1.2 billion financing in 2007 and a $548.8 million financing in 2008 to support the financing of NACIL's purchases of Boeing aircraft.
Ex-Im Bank is the official export-credit agency of the United States. The independent, self-sustaining federal agency has for over 75 years helped to 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 year 2009, Ex-Im Bank set a record, authorizing more than $21 billion in support of U.S. exports to help ease tightened liquidity during the economic crisis. More information is available on the Bank's web site at www.exim.gov.