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Digital Trade Chain: An incomplete solution to SME funding puzzle
Digital Trade Chain: An incomplete solution to SME funding puzzle
Lucy Palfreeman
3 July 2017

Digital Trade Chain - a consortium of Europe’s seven largest banks - has chosen IBM to design a platform to simplify trade finance processes for SMEs. But will it be able to tackle the pre-trade financing contracting issues affecting SMEs?

Commodity trade tech: The new key to making the margins
Commodity trade tech: The new key to making the margins
Callum Burroughs
16 June 2017

The changes that technology will bring to the commodities space are manifold. What can commodity trade finance expect from new technology and, more importantly, is it ready for it?

Networking the networks
Networking the networks
Helen Castell
8 June 2017

The first open-source blockchain-powered platform for trade finance – TradeIX’s founders claim it is a unique network-of-networks solution

Unveiling the companies represented at TXF Venice 2017
Unveiling the companies represented at TXF Venice 2017
Hesham Zakai
23 May 2017

Hundreds of market leading organisations have confirmed their attendance at the most spectacular event of the year for project, infrastructure, export and agency finance.

TXF Webinar: Can partnerships power supply chain finance?
TXF Webinar: Can partnerships power supply chain finance?
Hesham Zakai
22 May 2017

A new partnership between global electronic invoice financier Tungsten Network Finance and supply chain finance (SCF) expert Orbian promises to benefit clients on both sides of the equation. In this webinar, TXF aims to find out more about the partnership.

The state of the industry
The state of the industry
Vinco David
9 May 2017

Vinco David, Berne Union secretary general, discusses the risks involved in export credit and the investment insurance industry, despite it's healthy state.

EXIM Hungary: Supporting small and large
EXIM Hungary: Supporting small and large
Zoltán Urbán
9 May 2017

Smaller ECAs like Hungary EXIM have a key role to play in both supporting SMEs and partnering with other ECAs on large scale project financings. By Zoltan Urban, CEO EXIM Hungary.

The global opportunities for insurers prepared to embrace change
The global opportunities for insurers prepared to embrace change
Jérôme Pezé
9 May 2017

The credit insurance industry needs to break into new geographic markets and adopt new technology to keep pace with changing regulation and stay cost competitive. By Jérôme Pezé, CEO and founder, Tinubu Square.

Time to stand up and be counted
Time to stand up and be counted
Peter Sprent
9 May 2017

The volume of private insurance market credit risk mitigation is growing – but does the industry do enough to voice its activities and concerns to regulators? By Peter Sprent, Head of Global Financial Risk at Liberty Specialty Markets and Audrey Zuck, Director, A2Z Risk Services Ltd.

 Uruguyan wind: Small market - big impact
Uruguyan wind: Small market - big impact
Oliver Gordon
18 April 2017

Uruguay is the MacGyver of clean energy development. Equipped with just some pocket change from the UN’s climate fund, the country has become a global standard-bearer for wind power in just a decade. But is the market nearing saturation in terms of project borrowing?

Shop talk: ANZ turns up the Asian pipeline
Shop talk: ANZ turns up the Asian pipeline
Max Thompson
6 April 2017

Despite a sluggish 2016 in which Asian transaction activity was down on 2015, Paul Richards, global head of export finance at ANZ, is optimistic. The bank has already closed some important financings this year and has both deals, and structuring and liquidity initiatives, in the pipeline.

TXF data update: Structured commodity finance makes a comeback
TXF data update: Structured commodity finance makes a comeback
Callum Burroughs
31 March 2017

Commodity finance markets in 2016 were a myriad of regional shifts, structuring changes, and price fluctuations. Russia and North America demonstrated a resurgence while commodity price drops led to greater structured financing needs out of the Middle East.

Opinion: An evolving Trade Register is essential to trade finance
Opinion: An evolving Trade Register is essential to trade finance
Olivier Paul
31 March 2017

Olivier Paul - Head of Policy, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Banking Commission - outlines the continuing value of ICC’s Trade Register project, its successes to date, and its challenges and future evolution given current market conditions.

New OECD ECA regulation: Rising premium alarm
New OECD ECA regulation: Rising premium alarm
Max Thompson
28 March 2017

Under recent amendments to the OECD Arrangement on Export Credits, Minimum Premium Rates for cover on transactions involving high income countries were redefined. The changes up the cost of ECA cover for borrowers in Category 0 countries, while also giving non-Category 0 borrowers a significant premium advantage.

Positive impact movement: Towards an impact-based economy
Positive impact movement: Towards an impact-based economy
Denis Childs
28 March 2017

An assessment of what is required to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goals and what is needed to be part of the new industrial revolution.

A good fit: Building stronger Mexico-Turkey trade links
A good fit: Building stronger Mexico-Turkey trade links
Margaret Guevara
24 March 2017

Turkey and Mexico have each seen their share of world trade soar in the past two decades. The challenge now is to continue that dynamic growth in the years ahead - growth that banks can help facilitate.

EHDA sets up shop in London
1 March 2017

South-South: A growing trade direction
South-South: A growing trade direction
Helen Castell
28 February 2017

In a slowing global trade finance market, Michael Vrontamitis, global head of trade products, Transaction Banking at Standard Chartered, sees a potential upside to protectionism.

Fit for purpose
Fit for purpose
Sean Keating
22 February 2017

As Basel IV looms, the trade finance industry persists with claims about low default risk, market shrinkage and cuts in availability. But the data is simply not there to make a definitive case.

Funding tap: GCC margins dip
Funding tap: GCC margins dip
Max Thompson
22 February 2017

Two years of tight regional bank liquidity and even tighter government budgets forced many Middle East state-owned borrowers into the ECA-backed and pre-export loan markets at a time when margins jumped significantly. This year, and for the first time since the 2014 oil price slump, margins have begun to tighten again – albeit slightly.

Akbank refi out to market - but where will it price?
Akbank refi out to market - but where will it price?
Sean Keating
26 January 2017

Akbank is out to market with the first Turkish bank refinancing of 2017. Where the deal prices will not only be a gauge of international bank appetite for Turkey, but the cost of Turkish trade finance borrowing for the coming year.

The age of uncertainty: Trade wars and laws in 2017
The age of uncertainty: Trade wars and laws in 2017
Lucy Palfreeman
23 December 2016

Forecasts for trade since the financial crisis have been steady. Now, political anxiety and regulatory tightening casts a huge shadow of ambiguity over the trade outlook for 2017. Trump, Brexit and China have all rocked the trade plateau, making the trade finance arena next year ever more uncertain, and open for increasing speculation.

Catching up with the US’ new Trade Finance Advisory Council
Catching up with the US’ new Trade Finance Advisory Council
Max Thompson
22 December 2016

The recently-elected members of the US’ Trade Finance Advisory Council (TFAC) attended their inaugural meeting last month. The 20 private-sector leaders represent banks, asset managers, peer-to-peer lenders, exporters, and research institutions. TXF's Max Thompson caught up with Ericka Ukrow, executive secretariat of the TFAC at the US Department of Commerce, to find out how the Council plans to increase access to finance for US exporters.

ICC Trade Register 2016 promotes low risk of trade finance, but investors should still take care
ICC Trade Register 2016 promotes low risk of trade finance, but investors should still take care
Lucy Palfreeman
21 December 2016

The ICC Trade Register for 2016 finds that trade finance continues to have a favourable risk profile. However, some within the trade finance community question whether the report tells the whole story.

Reliance begins India’s digital age with first electronic export transaction
Reliance begins India’s digital age with first electronic export transaction
Lucy Palfreeman
24 November 2016

HSBC and Reliance Industries’ electronic export transaction marks a step forward for both India and emerging markets as a whole, as they progress towards digital trade adoption.

Will commodity traders embrace trade financing’s digital future?
Will commodity traders embrace trade financing’s digital future?
Callum Burroughs
11 November 2016

As the dazzling array of online trade tools and products continues to evolve, the diverse world of trade and commodity finance has begun to seek out digital solutions to help tackle efficiency and some complex problems. Commodity traders have operated with traditional methods for decades but research suggests they too will have to adopt digital opportunities to stay competitive in the future.

The era of regulation – part two
The era of regulation – part two
Ralph Lerch
10 November 2016

There is little doubt about the stabilising function of Export Credit Agency-backed export finance for exports during crisis times as the post-2008 renaissance illustrates. Since then we have been living in uncertain times with political instability and volatility in currency exchange rates, interest rates and raw material prices.

Demand for export credit and political risk insurance
Demand for export credit and political risk insurance
Prof. Dr. Andreas Klasen
4 November 2016

Doing business with and in other countries is vital for the growth of companies of all sizes and sectors. But in addition to business opportunities for internationally active companies through trade and foreign direct investment, exporters and investors operate in an environment characterised by heterogeneous political systems, economic conditions and cultural behaviour.

The oil price hardly matters for Russian country risk
The oil price hardly matters for Russian country risk
John Lorié
1 November 2016

The Russian economy is in a recession. Russia’s GDP contracted by 3.7% in 2015 and is forecast to contract again this year. With oil and gas accounting for 70% of Russian exports, the recent oil price decline is one reason behind the economic turmoil

European ECAs propel the future of wind farm projects
European ECAs propel the future of wind farm projects
Max Thompson
14 October 2016

In recent years, European ECAs and development institutions have been playing an increasing role in financing wind farm projects around the world. Their involvement is now key to maintaining commercial lenders attraction to the sector, says a renewable energy lawyer.

The challenge of the trade finance funding gap
The challenge of the trade finance funding gap
Marc Auboin
1 October 2016

The availability of trade finance is essential for a healthy and well-functioning trading system. Up to 80% of global trade is supported by some sort of financing or credit insurance.

2016: a leap-year, year of change and year of growth for the Berne Union
2016: a leap-year, year of change and year of growth for the Berne Union
Topi Vesteri
1 October 2016

Topi Vesteri, Berne Union president, and deputy CEO, and group chief credit officer of Finnvera, reveals how the Berne Union continues to support a growing amount of global trade, and reports on the importance of the formal merger with the Prague Club.

Walking a tight rope
Walking a tight rope
Geetha Muralidhar
1 October 2016

Export credit agencies offering only ‘pure covers’ i.e. only credit insurance, have been instrumental in promoting international trade since the dawn of the century.

State of the industry: Committee chairs and vice-chairs offer their insights
State of the industry: Committee chairs and vice-chairs offer their insights
Laszlo Varnai
1 October 2016

Volumes of export credit and investment insurance reported for 2015 by Members of the Berne Union decreased by 7% to reach a total amount of $1.865 trillion. But Berne Union members still supported about 11% of international trade in 2015.

The economist’s view: A world caught in tradelock
The economist’s view: A world caught in tradelock
Mahamoud Islam
1 October 2016

Global trade was high on the agenda of the G20 meeting in Hangzhou, China – and for a good reason, too.

The Berne Union: Who’s Who 2016
The Berne Union: Who’s Who 2016
Jonathan Bell
1 October 2016

The Berne Union: Who’s Who 2016

The ICC & export finance: An update on key developments
The ICC & export finance: An update on key developments
Eric De Jonge
1 October 2016

A year after the first meeting of the ICC Export Finance Committee in Barcelona it is a good time to look back at what we had in mind starting this initiative and where we stand now.

ITFA panel emphasises role of distribution for trade growth
ITFA panel emphasises role of distribution for trade growth
Jonathan Bell
22 September 2016

One of the key themes to come out of the recent ITFA conference held in Warsaw was the increasing importance of the role of distribution and syndication within trade to help achieve success in the changing and challenging market environment.

Unmet demand for trade finance hit $1.6trn in 2015
Unmet demand for trade finance hit $1.6trn in 2015
Callum Burroughs
20 September 2016

The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) annual Trade Finance Gaps report highlights specific difficulties in developing markets in Asia and Africa amongst a general gap of $1.6 trillion. Particular to the report is the plight of emerging market SMEs, which are most likely to be rejected for funding.

Global trade financing down 9% after impact of Asia slump
Global trade financing down 9% after impact of Asia slump
Callum Burroughs
6 September 2016

Coalition’s H1 2016 report on corporate and investment banks shows a continued decrease in trade finance volumes globally with Asia-Pacific bearing the brunt of the slump. De-risking, commodity pricing volatility and political exposure are among the key indicators amid a difficult time for exporters, traders and related financing.

The world is primed for the expansion of British business
The world is primed for the expansion of British business
Neil Ross
5 September 2016

As the dust settles following the European referendum, a shocked British industry seems to be gradually regaining some of its brio. Many businesses we speak to are seizing this upcoming change in the political landscape, taking the chance to re-evaluate their strategy and explore the potential of engaging

The global push to finance renewable energy sources
The global push to finance renewable energy sources
Georges Romano
30 August 2016

Export credit agencies, development banks, and multilaterals are becoming crucial sources of financing behind the growth of renewable energy projects in both developed and emerging countries. Georges Ramano, Latin America regional head of export and agency finance, treasury and trade solutions at Citi, tells TXF why these financial institutions are becoming highly attractive in bringing these projects to fruition and fuelling a sustainable green future.

TXF Data Update: Commodity financing down 30% as banks tighten lending procedures
TXF Data Update: Commodity financing down 30% as banks tighten lending procedures
Callum Burroughs
26 August 2016

TXF’s commodity finance report for H1 shows that overall commodity financing is down 30% on the same period last year while structured commodity financing has increased in 2016. Regulation, commodity prices and banking requirements have led to a difficult market on both sides of the financing world.

Rethinking trade finance regulation
Rethinking trade finance regulation
Alexander R Malaket
18 August 2016

Financial sector and trade finance regulation needs advocacy, engagement and dialogue from all parties to ensure the sector moves forward in a workable and profitable direction.

TXF Data Update: Middle East tops export finance market in H1
TXF Data Update: Middle East tops export finance market in H1
Max Thompson
12 August 2016

The Middle East is the largest export finance borrower market in the first half of the year, with a 35.3% share of the global market; the export finance community cites power, oil and gas, and real estate as the driving factors behind the growth.

TXF Data Update: Export finance market plunges 22.5% in H1
TXF Data Update: Export finance market plunges 22.5% in H1
Max Thompson
11 August 2016

The total volume of ECA deals taking place in the first half of 2016 dropped by 22.5% compared to same period last year, while SMBC topped the lenders table with $2.19 billion in financing.

Strength in numbers: collaborating for success in the increasingly digital world of trade
Strength in numbers: collaborating for success in the increasingly digital world of trade
Hesham Zakai
10 August 2016

In the heart of London – a city at the forefront of global fintech innovation – TXF’s Hesham Zakai sat down with a group of experts at a BNY Mellon-hosted roundtable to discuss how the landscape is unfolding, the impact of fintech on the more “traditionally renowned” trade sector, and how banks are responding to the surge of new technology meisters entering the finance space.

The long and winding road to digital trade finance documents
The long and winding road to digital trade finance documents
Helen Reid
8 August 2016

Awareness about digitisation of trade finance documents still has a way to go in order for mass adoption to be achieved, as the paperless trade technologies battle against legacy systems. TXF discusses with essDocs the obstacles and ambitions of the growing digital trade finance documentation sector, and how SWIFT’s Bank Payment Obligation might be regaining credence.

Is Blockchain the new space race?
Is Blockchain the new space race?
Helen Reid
26 July 2016

The creation of Chinese and Russian blockchain consortiums to match the New York-based R3CEV consortium evokes a Cold War space race in the financial technology sector. The new consortiums are a healthy sign of worldwide interest in distributed ledger technology, but also potentially indicate a fragmentation of the blockchain verification systems.

'Faster horses': Blockchain to combat trade fraud
'Faster horses': Blockchain to combat trade fraud
Helen Reid
20 July 2016

Speakers at a blockchain conference at Barclays’ fintech innovation hub, Rise, in East London, emphasised the technology’s potential for replacing paper documents and preventing fraud in international trade.