“EKN plays an essential role in supporting major export deals and in the export initiatives of small and medium-sized enterprises,” explains Anna-Karin Jatko, Director General of EKN.
The guarantee volume increased SEK 22.5 billion during the period, mainly due to guarantees for two telecom transactions in the USA. These are the largest guarantees ever issued by EKN for private buyers. Accordingly, guarantees issued during the period were dominated by the USA. Small and medium-sized enterprises are increasingly making use of EKN’s guarantees. The guarantees issued to this target group totalled SEK 1.3 billion, compared with SEK 1.1 billion in the year-earlier period.
“We recently launched two new financing solutions, one in partnership with Almi and one together with the European Investment Fund. We see results when we develop tailored solutions to meet companies’ needs in cooperation with other organisations that also promote growth for smaller companies,” says Anna-Karin Jatko. The number of guaranteed transactions was slightly down on last year. This was attributable to the decline in Swedish exports to Iran, due to the difficulties arising from the trade sanctions imposed by the USA. The number of letter of credit guarantees issued by EKN for transactions in Iran has declined considerably.
One of the countries where EKN has a substantial exposure is Turkey. For many years, EKN has guaranteed exports to the country at an average volume of SEK 2 billion per year. During the period, EKN downgraded Turkey to country risk category 5 and increased provisions to cover the risk exposure on Turkey.
“We normally note higher demand for EKN’s guarantees when risks increase in a country of importance for Swedish exports,” says Anna-Karin Jatko.
Operating profit for the period was SEK 931 million.
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