Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) has named Eli Hassine, deputy general manager and group head, export and agency finance for the bank’s Americas division as global head of export and agency finance.

Hassine has been charged with strengthening SMBC’s agency platform in the Americas and Europe, and sharpening the bank’s focus on cross-border buyer’s credit and untied programmes.

Masakazu Hasegawa, general manager for SMBC’s specialised finance department in New York comments that ”in spite of difficult global market conditions, this is an important strategic initiative and the export and agency finance business will be the focus business for SMBC in 2009“.

Before joining SMBC, Hassine was the global head of export and agency finance for Citi in New York. He joined SMBC together with Mini Roy, his deputy head, in April of last year.

Both Hassine and Roy have spent the past year expanding SMBC’s presence and product suite globally.