VTB, SMBC and Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) have entered into a US$175mn credit agreement for the financing of the construction of the Sheremetyevo-3 air terminal.

SMBC arranged the loan for the Russian bank VTB, and is backed by a JBIC guarantee, and it carries a tenor of 12 years.

Earlier this year, JBIC and SMBC signed a similar loan package with Vnesheconombank, the other Russian bank supporting the Sheremetyevo-3 project.  That transaction featured a US$228mn loan agreement, featuring JBIC guarantees and insurance cover from Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (Nexi), was signed in February.

It was the first credit to have been extended to a Russian bank under the JBIC/Nexi untied programme.

In December 2005, Vneshtorgbank, Vneshconombank, Aeroflot and the Sheremetyevo International Airport and Terminal company signed a memorandum of understanding to work jointly on the construction of the air terminal. The terminal company was set up in 2003 as a fully-owned Aeroflot subsidiary.

The following year, the two Russian banks bought shares from Aeroflot, with VTB taking a 25% stake plus one share, and VEB taking a 20% stake less two shares stake in the project company.

Under a loan agreement signed in June 2006, VTB agreed to extend a 13-year credit line of US$264mn to the terminal company, and VEB agreed to provide US$211mn. Both credit lines carry a 13-year tenor.

Construction of the terminal began in July 2005, and it is expected to be operational by the end of the year.