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Export Development Canada (EDC) and Russian diamond producer Alrosa Company Ltd have signed a US$15mn line of credit to finance purchases of Canadian capital goods and services.

“We expect the line of credit to strengthen commercial ties between the Canadian mining industry and Alrosa by increasing the procurement of capital equipment and technical services,” says EDC executive vice-president, Eric Siegel.

Alrosa is the largest diamond company in Russia engaged in the exploration, mining, manufacturing and sale of diamonds, and it is the second largest rough diamond producer in the world, accounting for almost all of the rough diamonds produced in Russia and for about 20% of the rough diamond output in the world.

“Alrosa is one of the foremost diamond producers in the world and we are excited by the potential of this relationship,” adds Robert Forbes, EDC vice-president, energy, infrastructure and services. “We wanted Canadian exporters to be well positioned to take advantage of the opportunities a company like Alrosa can offer.”

This financing arrangement builds on EDC’s recent efforts to help boost Canadian commercial activity in key sectors in Russia such as oil and gas, mining, advanced technologies, telecommunications and forestry. The line of credit has a five-year repayment term, and financing was extended to Alrosa under terms prevailing in the Russian market.