UAE and Africa to boost trade ties through export credit alliance - GulfToday

UAE and Africa to boost trade ties through export credit alliance


Officials after signing the Memorandum of Understanding, meant to boost the global competitiveness of exporters.

Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI) and African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) have agreed to strengthen the trade relations between the UAE and Africa by providing trade finance solutions to businesses and exporters in both areas.

To that end, both sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding to boost the global competitiveness of exporters by increasing their awareness on trade solutions and mitigating tools against commercial and political risks.

The MoU was signed by Massimo Falcioni, CEO of ECI and Manuel Moses, CEO of ATI. The MoU will allow the two institutions to collaborate on increasing their respective insurance and financing capacities.

Exporters in various sectors including metals, vehicle, steel and aluminium, agriculture, transport, renewable energy, mechanical, chemicals and waste management industries also stand to benefit from this partnership through workshops, forums, B2B meetings and events that ECI and ATI will jointly organise.

Underscoring the importance of the strategic alliance, Falcioni said, “As we celebrate the rich and illustrious trade relations of the UAE and the African region over the years, we at ECI are pleased to take this partnership further with ATI. This collaboration will give our exporters the confidence to access the African region’s diverse markets and resources with state-backed assurances and safeguards against commercial and political uncertainties.”

Moses commented, “We welcome this opportunity to strengthen our commitment with ECI in exploring mutual opportunities for insurance, reinsurance, co-insurance and skill development and to assist and support insureds from ATI and ECI. The conclusion of this agreement also comes at an opportune moment as ATI has an excellent mandate that supports trade and private sector growth in the region, particularly in the wake of the coronavirus that has affected global economies.”

Falcioni said that Africa presents various trade opportunities for UAE businesses. The value of non-oil trade between the UAE and Africa reached $40.7 billion in the first nine months of 2020, compared to $36.9 billion in the same period of 2019, while the value of non-oil trade between the two amounted to $50 billion in 2019, compared to $33 billion in 2015, according to recent data published by the Emirates News Agency.

ECI supports UAE businesses through trade risk mitigation tools that eliminate the uncertainty in a market that mostly demands for an open credit account transaction, which is a risky payment option. In the unfortunate occurrence of a non-payment - whether the customer is unwilling or unable to pay - insurance will take care of the loss and the company is ensured to receive the payment.

Established in 2001 as a result of the initiative between African States under the Agreement Establishing the African Trade Insurance Agency (the “ATI Treaty”), ATI facilitates private-sector-led trade flows, investment and productive activities through the provision of political risk and credit risk insurance, coinsurance and reinsurance, financial instruments and related services in order to encourage and facilitate trade and investment in the African region.

Etihad Credit Insurance (PJSC) was established by UAE Federal Government and its founders, the governments of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and Ajman. The company started its operations in February 2018. ECI plays a catalyst role in supporting the UAE’s non-oil exports, trade, investments and strategic sectors development, in line with UAE Vision 2021 agenda.

It is tasked to accelerate and sustain national economic diversification as well as support the export and re-export of UAE goods, works, services, and the foreign investments of the UAE businesses as well as support the exporters in the domestic trade through a range of export credit, financing and investment insurance products.

To provide UAE businesses with solutions that meet their growth objectives locally and internationally, ECI builds a comprehensive platform of strategic partnerships across government, insurers, re-insurers, brokers, banks and lenders, regional and international Export Credit Agencies, governments and trade promotion agencies in addition to world organisations for economic development.

ECI has also been assigned Insurance Financial Strength (IFS) Rating and an Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of AA- (Very Strong) with Stable Outlook from Fitch Ratings.

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