Khalifa Fund, ECI partner to boost export capabilities of SMEs

Khalifa Fund, ECI partner to boost export capabilities of SMEs

DUBAI, 30th March, 2021 (WAM) -- Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development and the Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI), the UAE federal export credit company have partnered to shore up the export capabilities of the country’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Mouza Obaid Al Nasri, Acting CEO of Khalifa Fund and Massimo Falcioni, CEO of the ECI.

The MoU aims to bolster SMEs and local enterprises registered under Khalifa Fund as part of their support for the UAE’s national diversification programme. Businesses and exporters under Khalifa Fund stand to gain from this partnership as the ECI guarantees to provide them access to a range of export credit, financing and investment insurance products.

Underscoring the importance of this sector, the Federal government aims to increase the contribution of the SME sector to the national economy to around 60 percent by 2021, a reason the ECI offers "SME Protect", a trade credit solution designed to support the growth plans of SMEs globally and assist them while entering high-growth markets. The launch of this product makes the ECI the first government export credit company in the Middle East and Africa to offer UAE SMEs an online trade credit solution to secure trade and export to more than 50 countries.

Under the agreement, the two entities will establish a committee that will implement initiatives in a bid to bolster the country’s exports. The number of members, the structure of the committee and the means of financing, as well as the schedule of meetings, the working mechanism and the decision-making process will be finalised by the ECI and Khalifa Fund.

As part of the agreement, the ECI will support businesses under Khalifa Fund through organising workshops regarding the benefits of trade protection solutions, as well as offering bespoke trade credit services that can significantly help cement their presence in the global arena.

The federal export credit company will also provide market intelligence and country risk report to highlight the commercial and political risks associated with international trade activities.

Khalifa Fund will promote the said relevant workshops and events to respective members, as well as facilitate referrals to the ECI for enquiries involving trade credit, trade finance, and surety bonds solutions. The Fund will also uphold the ECI’s services and products through its newsletter, website, magazine, direct mailing, and events.

Mouza Al Nasri, Acting CEO of Khalifa Fund, stated, "The partnership with the ECI is an embodiment of Khalifa Fund’s unswerving commitment towards further enhancing the export operations of SMEs in the UAE. Khalifa Fund and the ECI share the same vision and have both always been vital to the growth of the UAE’s non-oil economy."

Highlighting the importance of this strategic agreement, Falcioni said, "Our institutions share a common mandate to support small businesses and help them prosperously expand, and this alliance will allow us to facilitate new development of products that will help us achieve our aggressive goals of positioning the UAE as the global hub for trade and business."