External organization | subordinate agency | Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries
Export Finance Norway (Eksportfinansiering Norge (Eksfin)) promotes Norwegian exports mainly by offering financing to buyers of Norwegian exporter's goods and services. The purpose is for Norwegian exporters to get new contracts, which contribute to employment and growth in Norway.
- Export Finance Norway's purpose is to be an efficient manager of financing schemes for value-adding exports.
- Export Finance Norway is a result of the Norwegian government's merger of the Norwegian Export Credit Guarantee Agency (Garantiinstituttet for eksportkreditt (GIEK)) and Export Credit Norway.
- The schemes and offers of export credits which was managed by the two organizations was transferred to Export Finance Norway on July 1st 2021.
- Value-adding exports to the largest possible extent is the objective Export Finance Norway is looking to achieve for the society. The objective for Export Finance Norway's target group is competitive exporters.
- The main task of Export Finance Norway is to provide loans and guarantees to buyers of Norwegian goods and services. There are also certain products offered directly to Norwegian exporters.
- Export Finance Norway also manages certain other tasks for the Norwegian State such as the temporary offer of financing for the purchase of ships from Norwegian shipyards when the vessels are to be used in Norway, as well as guarantees for building loans for ships and long-term electricity contracts.
- Export Finance Norway performs thorough risk assessments in each individual guarantee application and is required to break even over time.
- Export Finance Norway's activities are regulated by international frameworks.
Officially supported export credits
Export Finance Norway provides loans and guarantees to buyers of exported goods and services from Norway. The purpose is to trigger new contracts for Norwegian exporters, which in turn contribute to employment and growth in Norway. The official export credit system is a supplement to commercial financing, and the new agency will continue to co-finance with others on its loans and/or guarantees. Any company, big or small, in any sector can apply for officially supported export credits.
Here is a brief explanation of how it works: Export Finance Norway offers a loan to a buyer of a Norwegian good or service. The risk that the borrower defaults must be covered by a guarantee. The guarantee can be covered by a commercial bank or financial institution with a sufficient credit rating. Usually Export Finance Norway shares the risk with commercial financial institutions. Export Finance Norway can also solely use private banks as guarantors or offer guarantees for loans solely provided by private banks.
The conditions to receive a loan and/or a guarantee, and the terms of the loan and guarantee itself, is regulated nationally and internationally.
Export Finance Norway provides fixed-rate loans (Commercial Interest Reference Rate – CIRR) or loans with floating rate market terms. All applications that fall within the specific frameworks will get an offer of a loan. The specific frameworks are Export Finance Norway's rules and regulations, Norwegian laws, the Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits, international laws, agreements and conventions that are relevant for each loan offer.
Offers to Norwegian exporters and other guarantee schemes
Export Finance Norway mainly offers long-term export loans and export guarantees to buyers of Norwegian exporter's capital goods and services. Export Finance Norway also have certain offers directly to Norwegian exporters, such as guarantees for loans to Norwegian companies making investments in Norway that are related to exports.
Export Finance Norway also manages certain other tasks for the Norwegian State such as the temporary offer of financing for the purchase of ships from Norwegian shipyards when the vessels are to be used in Norway, in addition to guarantees that contribute to Norwegian shipyards and offshore yards obtaining building loans, as well as guarantees to ensure that major energy consuming companies are able to enter long-term electricity contracts. Export Finance Norway also manages several temporary guarantee schemes that were established due to the pandemic.
Export Finance Norway's activities are regulated by international frameworks such as
- The WTO agreements, especially « the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures»
- The European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement's state aid rules
- The Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits with sector understandings and recommendations
The OECD-agreement "Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits" (Arrangement) regulates the terms and conditions for Export Finance Norway's export loans and guarantees. The purpose is a level playing field and to encourage competition among exporters based on the quality and price of the offered goods and services. The agreement has existed since 1978, with Norway being a Participant from the beginning. The Arrangement is a so-called Gentlemen's Agreement between Australia, Canada, the EU, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey, the UK and the United States.
The Arrangement regulates e.g. minimum interest rates, minimum premium and maximum repayment terms. There is one main framework, and six sector understandings that cover export credits in the area of i) ships, ii) nuclear power plants, iii) civil aircraft, iv) renewable energy, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and water projects, v) rail infrastructure and vi) coal-fired electricity generation projects. There are also recommendations on how to address environmental and social issues, avoid bribery and contribute to sustainable lending in international business transactions benefiting from official export credit support.
Re-organisation of the Norwegian system for officially supported export credits
As announced by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries on 2 September 2020, the Norwegian Government decided to re-organise its administration of the Norwegian export credit financing activities. The re-organisation entailed merging the activities of Export Credit Norway AS and the Norwegian Export Credit Guarantee Agency (Garantiinstituttet for eksportkreditt (GIEK)) into a new governmental entity, Export Finance Norway, on 1 July 2021. The merger will make it easier for the business community to understand and navigate in the official export credit system. The merger will also entail a more efficient export credit system.
Before Export Credit Norway was established in 2012, Eksportfinans ASA managed export loans on behalf of the Norwegian State. New loans are no longer issued by Eksportfinans, but the company continues to manage its existing portfolio of loans from the agreement with the Norwegian State.
Web page: https://www.eksfin.no/en