UK Export Finance has recorded a “record” year thanks to the success of the General Export Facility (GEF), it has been revealed.
The figures, published by the Government’s export credit agency, also show that more than 100,000 jobs were supported throughout the coronavirus pandemic through export finance.
According to the report, UKEF provided some £12.3 billion in support for UK exporters in the 2020/21 financial year – representing a “record” year and nearly three times the amount provided in the previous 12 months.
The study also reveals that UKEF more than doubled the number of UK businesses it assisted over the last two years, in addition to supporting 107,000 jobs by keeping businesses trading throughout the pandemic. Almost eight in 10 (79 per cent) of these companies were classified as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Commenting on the figures, Marcus Dolman, Co-Chairman of the British Exporters’ Association (BExA), said the new GEF scheme, alongside the Export Development Guarantee (EDG) for larger businesses, has supported the nation.
“UKEF has stepped up and provided much needed support to sustain exporters through the pandemic. The new EDG and GEF products are already proving their value to UK exporters and to supporting UK jobs. It is also heartening to see increases in UKEF’s traditional support. The rise in the number of exporters supported is positive,” he said.
What is the GEF?
The General Export Facility provides partial guarantees of up to 80 per cent to banks to incentivise lending to UK exporters who are unable to access finance.
The GEF supports cash facilities, such as trade loans, and contingent obligation facilities, such as bonding and letter of credit lines, valued up to £25 million with maximum repayment terms of up to five years.
You can learn more about the GEF here.
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