Etihad Credit Insurance, the UAE's export credit agency, issued 7,936 revolving credit guarantees worth Dh16.6 billion ($4.5bn) in the first nine months of the year to help boost the country’s non-oil foreign trade.
ECI-issued credit guarantees from January until September helped facilitate non-oil trade for businesses located in the UAE that have exported to 111 countries, ECI said in a statement on Monday.
These state-backed guarantees helped to preserve and create 50,000 jobs by supporting companies, 72 per cent of which were small and medium enterprises, ECI said.
"We continue our efforts to expand and diversify our economy by improving the competitiveness of the business environment with a special focus on emerging industries and SMEs and enabling them to launch from the UAE and prepare them to expand and compete in the global markets," said Abdulla bin Touq, Minister of Economy and chairman of the board of directors of ECI.
ECI, which launched operations in 2018, is responsible for supporting the export and re-export of UAE goods and services and foreign investments of local businesses.
The agency is among the central planks of the UAE’s economic diversification agenda and supports exporters through a range of credit, financing and investment insurance products. Since 2020, it has also started providing credit insurance support to domestic non-oil trade and project financing guarantees to businesses.
ECI has partnerships with local and international banks that offer loans to UAE companies to fund exports to overseas buyers, with the agency providing insurance.
ECI is "is pivotal in our trade expansion strategy by supporting the growth of local businesses, as a great stimulus in job creation and contributing to the doubling of the country’s economy by 2030", said Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade and deputy chairman of ECI board of directors.
The UAE signed Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement deals with India, Israel and Indonesia, and negotiations are under way for a similar pact with Turkey, Georgia and Cambodia, as the country looks to double the size of its national economy and push gross domestic product beyond Dh3 trillion by 2030.
"By facilitating local businesses easy access to an innovative range of export insurance and financing solutions, ECI helps businesses of any size and scale to grow overseas. This would immensely help in enhancing the value and demand for Made in UAE products in the global markets," Omar Al Suwaidi, undersecretary of the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology, said.