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The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is signing a US$500,000 trade finance agreement with Armenia’s Anelik Bank under the EBRD’s Trade Finance Programme to guarantee letters of credit and other trade finance instruments issued by Anelik Bank.

George Krivicky, EBRD director for the Caucasus countries, says that promotion of international trade transactions is a priority for Armenia’s economic development and underlined that the agreement with Anelik Bank will promote the use of modern trade finance instruments to the benefit of entrepreneurs and enterprises in Armenia.

Samvel Chzmachian, chairman of Anelik Bank, adds that the programme will help develop professional trade finance services at Anelik Bank and underlines his bank’s strategic commitment to support its clients” needs in international trade transactions.

Anelik Bank, established in 1990, is a dynamically growing universal bank, specialising in SME lending and money transfer operations. It has successfully utilised a US$1mn SME credit line provided by the EBRD in December 2002. Anelik has also benefited from technical assistance provided by EBRD to improve credit operations.

Established in 1999, the Trade Facilitation Programme supports trade to, from and within the EBRD’s 27 countries of operations. Under the TFP, the bank guarantees payment obligations of local issuing banks to their western confirming counterparts in respect of trade-finance instruments. In addition to providing trade finance guarantees, under this programme the EBRD also extends short-term loans to selected banks in its countries of operations to fund trade-related advances to local companies. Over 70 issuing banks in the bank’s region of operations participate in the programme together with about 440 confirming banks throughout the world.