Former chief risk officer of UK Export Finance (UKEF), Samir Parkash, has been appointed interim chief executive of the export credit agency.

Parkash takes over from Louis Taylor, who served as chief executive from 2015-2022, before leaving at the start of this month to head up the British Business Bank.

“I’m honoured and delighted to take on the role as interim CEO and lead a department that grows the economy, supports jobs, and strengthens international trade,” says Parkash.

Parkash has over 30 years of banking and financial services experience, including nine years at Royal Bank of Scotland, most recently as global sector lead of large corporates, and 18 years at Bank of America.

He joined UKEF as chief risk officer in 2018.

UKEF says its £7.4bn-worth of support to exports last year helped grow the UK economy by £4.3bn and supported approximately 72,000 jobs in Britain.

Under Taylor, UKEF released new products, including its general export facility programme, which allows the agency to support exporters’ overall working capital requirements, as well as its green transition export development guarantee.

But UKEF also faced concerns over its financial support being too concentrated, with 92% going to just 10 countries in 2020/21, according to a government inquiry last year.

Commenting on Parkash’s move, James Bowler, permanent secretary at the Department for International Trade says: “Samir will provide both incredible expertise and continuity in this interim period.”

A UKEF spokesperson tells GTR that the recruitment process, chaired by a civil service commissioner, is underway.

“Once we have concluded the full process, a formal announcement will be made on UKEF’s website,” they say.