Japan’s Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) has agreed to make several long-term loans, adding up to US$600mn, to Russia’s Sberbank.

Sberbank intends to use the loans to finance the exports of equipment, machinery and services from Japan.

Herman Gref, Sberbank’s CEO, highlights that the import of Japanese equipment will help growth in the Russian manufacturing sector.

JBIC has also been busy elsewhere, securing two tie-ups with governmental regional developers.

The first was with the Alaskan Department of Natural Resources to encourage natural resource projects in Alaska.

The US state has reserves which include oil, natural gas, coal, copper, gold, silver, zinc and rare earths – the key mobile phone ingredient in which Japan has shown so much interest of late.

This aim of the agreement is to help the diversification of Japan’s sources of natural resources, JBIC outlined.

The Japanese ECA has also been looking closer to home, settling a memorandum of cooperation with the Far East and Baikal Region Development fund (FEDF), which is a subsidiary of the Russian state-owned Vnesheconombank.

JBIC and the FEDF intend to work together to assess the feasibility of infrastructure projects and to assist their development.

Private Japanese companies, in particular, are looking to be involved in Russia’s far eastern infrastructure projects and JBIC plans to encourage this, it outlined.