Polestar Performance, a Swedish electric car maker, has closed a €350mn uncommitted green trade finance facility with a syndicate of banks, to support the import of electric vehicles (EVs) into Europe and North America.

Standard Chartered acted as structuring bank, as well as coming in as mandated lead arranger together with Nordea. ING and Citi also joined as lenders.

Polestar’s strategic focus is to develop technologies to mitigate its environmental impact, from vehicle concept through to materials and production techniques. It is focused on the goal of producing a truly carbon neutral car by 2030, including the development of new interior materials and structural components. The financing – which Standard Chartered calls a “market first syndicated green invoice finance facility” – covers imports for Polestar by funding supplier invoices. It supports Polestar’s working capital needs as well as upholding the broader United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to move towards sustainable development, net-zero emissions, and a green economy by providing financing to this segment.

Basing its logic on an estimation by the European Environment Agency that an average car in Europe emits 107.8 grams of CO2 per kilometre, Standard Chartered says this facility could support the switch to EVs, potentially resulting in an estimated annual saving of 1,700 kilograms of CO2 per kilometre.

Trade in EVs is on the rise, thanks to increased demand for greener mobility options worldwide. In a recent financial statement, Volkswagen said it doubled deliveries of all-electric vehicles in 2021. Meanwhile, Sweden’s Volvo – which was the joint owner of Polestar along with its Chinese parent company prior to the company’s decision to go public, has said it plans to sell only EVs by 2030.

In a bid to boost their EV manufacturing and export sectors, numerous export credit agencies are extending facilities to the industry. Last month, the UK’s export credit agency provided a £500mn loan guarantee to automotive manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover, while Export Finance Australia approved loans to two companies developing graphite processing projects for the supply chains of EV batteries.