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EX-IM BANK SUPPORTS AEROSPACE EXPORTS TO ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES, SIGNER OF CAPETOWN TREATY [Español]

Airline Benefits from Ex-Im Bank Financing Offer Related to Cape Town Treaty

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 15, 2003

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Linda Formella (202) 565-3200

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WASHINGTON, D.C.- The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) is providing long-term financing to support the sale of four Boeing large commercial aircraft, two Pratt & Whitney spare engines and one CFM engine to Ethiopian Airlines. The guaranteed lender is Barclays Capital Corporation. Ethiopian Airlines benefited from a special Ex-Im Bank financing offer because the government of Ethiopia has signed and ratified the Cape Town Convention, an international treaty to facilitate cross-border, asset-based financing of large commercial aircraft and related equipment.

Ethiopian Airlines received a reduced exposure fee on the aircraft financing and a reduced exposure fee and longer repayment terms on the financing of the spare engines. Ex-Im Bank is offering the reduced exposure fee to any airline in a country that has signed and ratified the Cape Town Convention, and passed implementing legislation.

This transaction represents a great achievement and an example for other countries and their airlines. I would like to commend the government of Ethiopia for its leadership on the Cape Town Convention and Ethiopian Airlines for recognizing and taking advantage of the benefits of Ex-Im Bank's special offer, said Ex-Im Bank Board Member April Foley.

Ethiopia is only the second country in the world (after Panama) to ratify the Cape Town Convention, which will establish a common international legal framework to protect security interests in aircraft, aircraft engines, and helicopters. To date, 26 countries have signed the treaty, and two countries have ratified it. The United States has signed the treaty, and President Bush has forwarded it to the U.S. Senate for advice and consent to ratification.

The transaction is the first phase of a major expansion project of Ethiopian Airlines, which operates a jet fleet comprised entirely of U.S. manufactured aircraft. Ethiopian Airlines is one of five African airlines authorized to operate flights to the United States. The airline provides extensive service to and within Africa, and it is a recognized leader in providing training and expertise to other African airlines.

Ex-Im Bank is the official U.S. export credit agency and helps to create and sustain 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 2003, Ex-Im Bank authorized financing to support more than $14 billion of U.S. exports worldwide. For more information on Ex-Im Bank, visit www.exim.gov.