FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 10, 2007
Marianna Ohe (202) 565-3200
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) has renewed, and expanded from $300 million to $405 million, a Nigerian Bank Facility that allows for expedited processing of short- and medium-term insurance and guarantee transactions in support of U.S. exports to Nigeria.
Ex-Im Bank's credit facility was initially approved in June 2006. With the addition of three new banks to the program -- United Bank for Africa, Fidelity Bank and Wema Bank -- the facility now has a total of 17 banks, which have been allocated credit lines that will expire on June 12, 2008.
The remaining 14 banks, which were original members of the facility, are: Access Bank, Afribank, Diamond Bank, Ecobank, First Bank, Guarantee Trust Bank, Intercontinental, IBTC, Nigerian International Bank, Oceanic Bank, Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria, Stanbic Bank Nigeria, Union Bank, and Zenith Bank. Banks utilizing the facility provide a payment guarantee for their customers, who are the buyers of U.S. goods.
To work with Ex-Im Bank however, Nigerian banks need not be a member of the facility. Ex-Im Bank welcomes the opportunity to consider transactions with all of Nigeria's banks, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President James H. Lambright.
Reaching out to Nigerian banks is a key part of Ex-Im Bank's strategy to expand support for U.S. exports to this important market, said Lambright. The participating banks have undergone major growth over the past year, and we hope to see increased use of the facility, which will support U.S. jobs and Nigerian economic development.
Lambright said additional Nigerian banks have shown interest in participating in the Ex-Im Bank program.
Ex-Im Bank, an independent federal government agency, this year marks its 72nd year of helping finance the sale of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets throughout the world. The Bank last year authorized over $12.1 billion in export financing, including more than $532 million in support of U.S. exports to sub-Saharan Africa. Ex-Im Bank works with commercial lenders to help U.S. companies increase export sales and American jobs and minimize risk by accessing the Bank's financing and export credit insurance.