Businesses to access millions in government export support through high street banks partnership

Economy & Politics | Latest News | National
Liam Fox

Secretary of State for the Department for International Trade, Liam Fox, has today announced that UKEF will partner with five of the UK’s biggest banks to deliver government-backed financial support to exporters more quickly and efficiently.

Partnering with Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, RBS/NatWest and Santander, UKEF will also be able to extend its support to supply chain companies of UK exporters, significantly increasing the number of businesses able to access UKEF-backed trade finance.

As a result, smaller companies that support big UK exporters will be able to secure government-backed financing to deliver products and services and benefit from their clients’ international business.

Secretary of State for International Trade, Liam Fox, said: “As an international economic department, this new partnership shows the Department for International Trade’s commitment to help small businesses seize the global demand for British exports.

“Providing easily accessible finance, backed by UKEF’s guarantee, will lift a common barrier to exporting. Providing that finance to suppliers as well as exporters means spreading the benefits of global trade, supporting more jobs and growth for companies large and small.”

Through this new model, banks will be able to provide export-related trade finance, for example working capital loans and bonds required by overseas buyers, to support their SME customers directly, and with UKEF’s guarantee in place should it be needed.

At the same time, UKEF will make trade finance support directly available to direct suppliers supporting UK exporters, in a major enhancement to its existing offer. This will allow thousands of companies in manufacturers’ and service providers’ supply chains to access contract bonds and working capital loans with the government’s guarantee.

All of this is being delivered to banks through a new and secure digital platform to help ensure the quickest response times and most efficient customer experience.

Since UKEF’s trade finance products were launched in 2011, nearly 300 companies have benefited from nearly £500 million in support for several billion pounds worth of overseas contracts. This development follows a partnership agreement between the Department for International Trade and the five banks signed in July 2016.

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