Switzerland’s export credit agency (ECA), Serv, has insured a €152.6mn financing package to build nine vocational training centres in Ghana.

The facility is being extended to Ghana’s finance ministry by ING and BNP Paribas, in alignment with the loan market associations’ social loan principles, and has a tenor of 13 years.

ING is acting as the facility agent, with Serv as agent and co-ordinator. The insurance deal was signed in late February.

The project involves the construction and outfitting of the vocational training centres, as well as designing 33 curricula.

“The hope is that this education initiative will contribute to improving young people’s vocational knowledge and their level of qualification,” says a statement issued by Serv. “This project reiterates the government of Ghana’s commitment to upgrade the education infrastructure and improve employability.”

The UAE-based contractor developing the project, Planet One Group, has engaged some 20 sub-contractors in Switzerland and founded a subsidiary in the country.

“We are thankful to Serv for their quick turnaround and also to hand-hold us through the entire process. We also look forward to carrying out other transactions with Serv’s support,” says Deepak Balaji, Planet One Group’s director, in a statement provided by the ECA.

“We’re very proud to be supporting this project, which will have a positive and wide social impact,” says Ron Hansen, ING’s managing director of structured export finance. “Its long-lasting positive effect on Ghana’s economy is motivating us to seek further transactions of this kind.”

Ghana has attracted an influx of ECA-backed export finance deals in recent years, including projects in the transport, healthcare and retail sectors.