Export Finance and Insurance Corporation (EFIC) , Australia’s export credit agency, and its Thai counterpart, the Export-Import Bank of Thailand (EXIM Thailand) has signed an agreement to help promote information exchange, capacity building and trade and investment deals involving Australian and Thai companies.
The Memorandum of Cooperation between EFIC and EXIM Thailand creates a broad framework for collaboration between the two agencies. It is part of the coordinated response to the global financial crisis to ensure businesses in the Asia-Pacific region continue to have access to finance to continue to trade and expand.
The agreement also supports the G20 commitment in April to make available trade finance facilities to help sustain trade and investment flows.
Under the agreement, EFIC and EXIM Thailand will strive to identify and develop eligible projects involving trade and investment relationships of Australian and Thai companies where participation by both agencies might be bilaterally beneficial.
‘The agreement will formalise working procedures intended to promote and facilitate overseas investments of our respective national companies, trade finance, credit insurance and/or financing of projects within the scope of our respective mandates,’ said Chang Foo, Head of Product Management and Risk Transfer at EFIC.
The agreement reflects the growing trade relationship between Australia and Thailand, underpinned by the Thailand–Australia Free Trade Agreement. Thailand is Australia’s tenth largest export market and ninth largest two-way trading partner.
EFIC and EXIM Thailand are also forging stronger regional links through their memberships of the Asian Exim Banks Forum (comprising the financing arms of respective agencies) and the Berne Union Regional Cooperation Group (comprising the credit and overseas investment insurance arms), which aim to enhance cooperation between the export credit agencies in the Asia-Pacific region. Membership agencies are from Australia, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, South Korea, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
Australia hosted the Asian Exim Bank forum’s annual Heads of Delegation meeting in Sydney in October 2008, and Thailand hosted this year’s Regional Cooperation Group Heads of Asian export credit agencies annual meeting which concluded on 7 August in Bangkok.