The Export-Import Bank of India (India Exim) has boosted its post-tax profit by almost two thirds, in a bumper year of business driven in part by growth in the clean energy, automotive and engineering sectors.

The state-owned lender’s operating profit grew by 4.2% to ₹37.5bn (US$451.8mn), but its after-tax profit jumped by 61.83% compared to the previous year, according to a summary of its results for the 2023-24 financial year, released on May 14.

India Exim lends directly to Indian exporters and importers and offers lines of credit to fund development projects in third countries on behalf of the Indian government.

It also provides additional services such as guarantees to commercial lenders extending credit to overseas banks, dedicated support for startups and a factoring product launched in 2023.

The bank issued just over ₹1tn (US$12.8bn) of new loans during the financial year, which ended on March 31, a 17% jump on the previous period.

A swelling net loan book has been fuelled by “strong growth” in clean and renewable energy, automotives, engineering goods, pharmaceuticals and telecommunications, the lender says. Net interest income over the period was ₹35.4bn (US$426.5mn).

As of March 31, India Exim had a portfolio of 324 government-backed lines of credit to fund overseas development projects involving Indian exporters, worth US$31bn in total. The bank says the credit lines have supported 952 export contracts valued at almost US$16bn.

The biggest beneficiaries of those credit lines are India’s neighbours, including Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

India Exim also reported an acceleration of its trade assistance programme (TAP), under which it guarantees lines of credit that Indian lenders provide to banks in new or challenging markets. The overseas banks use the funds to offer trade finance to companies conducting trade with India.

Launched in 2022, India Exim says the TAP has already supported 506 transactions in 33 countries as of March 31, backing more than US$1.1bn of incremental exports.

At the same time last year, the TAP had supported just US$305mn-worth of exports to 17 countries, the bank told GTR at the time.

Many of the overseas lenders in the programme are in Africa, a region in which India Exim is becoming increasingly active as it attempts to double bilateral trade with the continent by 2030.

In the current financial year, India Exim plans to raise around US$7.2bn to help fund its lending activity, the institution’s managing director Harsha Bangari said at a press conference on May 13.

According to Indian business newspaper Mint, Bangari said the fresh funds will be borrowed in the domestic and overseas markets, with foreign currency borrowings in the region of US$3-3.5bn.

In the previous financial year, the bank raised around US$9bn in local and foreign currency.

The outlook for India’s export performance is strong. The country exported goods and services worth US$776.68bn in the 2023-24 financial year, according to preliminary government data published in April.

India Exim expects merchandise exports to grow by 10.7% year-on-year in the April-June quarter, citing “India’s strong GDP growth fundamentals and outlook, sustained momentum in manufacturing and services sector” and an “expected global easing of monetary tightening, spurring global demand”.

But government data released this week shows that goods exports only rose by 1% in April, compared to the same month last year.