The UK’s export credit agency ECGD has taken the plunge and resumed cover for British exports to Libya.
The agency has made US$250mn-worth of cover immediately available, according to ECGD chief executive officer Patrick Crawford.
Cover was ceased following NATO airstrikes against the former Gaddafi regime.
The ECGD claims to be the first major ECA that had previously stopped cover to resume offering trade credits to transactions with the country since the interim National Transition Council took governmental control of Libya.
“I very much hope that ECGD’s lead in resuming cover will have the added benefit of signalling to international private investors and banks that creditworthiness has been restored,” adds ECGD’s Crawford.
“I hope this signal of the UK’s confidence will encourage banks and other lenders to support the new regime.”
The ECGD isn’t the only ECA to offer Libyan cover, however, as Germany’s Euler Hermes tells GTR that “Hermes cover for Libyan transactions is in principle possible. Applications for cover are decided case by case.”
Unlike a number of ECAs, including the EGCD, Euler Hermes and France’s Coface were not ever off cover for the Libyan market.
Other ECAs which have gone off cover are still tentatively watching the situation in Libya, including in Italy after the country’s banks had significant investment from Libya’s sovereign wealth fund during the Gaddafi regime.
A spokesperson for Italy’s Sace tells GTR: “We are not covering any credits in Libya at the moment. However, we are of course carefully monitoring the situation and the institutional transition in place in the country.”