EBRD extends trade finance facility to Cairo Amman Bank

By Nibal Zgheib

The EBRD is partnering with Cairo Amman Bank to help Jordanian companies engage more widely in international trade so that they can grow further and contribute to the country’s economic development.

The EBRD has signed two agreements with Cairo Amman Bank establishing a US$ 35 million trade finance facility to support international and intra-regional trade transactions with tenors of up to three years for guarantees and 12 months for cash advances.

The project is the EBRD’s second engagement in the Jordanian banking sector and its second TFP deal in the country. It is an extension of the Bank’s Trade Facilitation Programme (TFP) and will support Cairo Amman Bank’s clients’ export and import activities by facilitating the distribution of imported goods and contribute to the overall growth of corporates as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Under these two agreements, the EBRD will issue guarantees and provide cash advances for international trade transactions made by Cairo Amman Bank. The Jordanian bank will benefit from TFP’s extensive trade finance network and technical skills transfer.

It will also allow the bank to extend the maturities of its own trade finance products. Participating in the TFP will open up new opportunities to develop trade finance links with the EBRD’s countries of operations.

After signing the agreements, EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti said: “The Trade Facilitation Programme is at the forefront of the EBRD’s project work in the SEMED region. Out of three projects in Jordan so far, two of them have involved a trade finance facility. The Programme’s goal of making it easier for companies to import and export goods and services is key to the economic development of these countries and will promote greater integration within the region, which is currently marked by low levels of intra-regional trade.”

“I would like to add that we have been highly impressed at the EBRD by the high degree of professionalism displayed by the Cairo Amman Bank team working on this deal,” the President added.

Kamal Gharib Al-Bakri, General Manager of Cairo Amman Bank, said: “The signature of this US$ 35 million trade finance facility between Cairo Amman Bank and the EBRD will serve Cairo Amman Bank’s goals to foster the growth of Jordan’s economy especially by targeting corporates and local SMEs as well as expanding foreign trade activities, it will also strengthen Cairo Amman Bank’s position as a leading institution in the Jordanian banking sector”.

Launched in 1999, the Trade Facilitation Programme aims to promote foreign trade to, from and among the EBRD’s countries of operations. Through the programme, the EBRD provides guarantees to international confirming banks and short-term loans to selected banks and factoring companies for on-lending to local exporters, importers and distributors.

The TFP currently includes over 100 participating banks in 20 countries of operations with limits exceeding €2 billion in total as well as more than 800 confirming banks worldwide.

Cairo Amman Bank was established in 1960 and has since grown into the 6th largest commercial bank in Jordan in terms of assets. While primarily a retail bank, Cairo Amman Bank also offers a full range of products and services to SME and corporate clients, including a full range of trade finance facilities such as documentary credits and guarantees. For more information please visit http://www.cab.jo/