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Export credit agencies: Briefing note

Export Credit Agencies and Climate Change: a briefing for Cancun

After the collapse of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) talks in Copenhagen in December 2009, the future financial architecture for funding climate change mitigation and adaptation continues to be fiercely debated. At the 2010 climate summit in Cancun, Mexico, the issue will again be on the table for negotiation.

In Cancun, the role of public and private finance will be considered, and thus the role of export credit agencies (ECAs).  ECAs sit at the nexus of public and private finance, and may become increasingly important. Many ECAs support billions of dollars worth of exports to fossil-fuel projects which emit greenhouse gases. ECA financing for fossil fuels eclipses ECA financing for climate-friendly technologies.

This briefing outlines the negative impact of ECA fossil fuel financing. The paper also raises the question of whether ECAs have a role to play in contributing to “climate finance.”

Avoiding solutions: How Export Credit Agencies help companies that continue to evade tax

This briefing note shows the folly of G-20 plans to increase ECAs’ capacity without ensuring they bring in regulations aimed at halting their support for companies that take advantage of tax avoidance loopholes such as offshore financial centres. It ends with a series of recommendations for ensuring ECAs are held to government policies.

PDF iconAvoiding solutions.pdf756.15 KB

From Rome to Lisbon: a guide to the EU and its role in developing trade and investment agreements

Liberalising investments with the aim of opening markets appears to be incompatible with sustainable development of resource-based activities. FERN has therefore published a briefing note, “From Rome to Lisbon,” a guide to the EU’s investment strategy. The guide explores the EU’s controversial role in developing investment provisions in the free trade agreements it concludes with third countries.

PDF iconfrom rome to lisbon.pdf941.36 KB

Export Credit Debt. How ECA support to corporations indebts the world's poor

This briefing note by Both ENDS and FERN highlights the fairly hidden role of Export Credit Agencies (ECAs) in the debt problems of many developing countries. It explains how export credit debt comes about, and clarifies how the cancellation of export credit debt is written off with Official Development Assistance (ODA) money.  It concludes with suggestions about how ECAs should change, in order to become coherent with international efforts to reduce poverty through sustainable development.

PDF iconOPEN451.62 KB

Bankrolling Climate Change: Why it is time to end Hermes flights of fancy

While the threat of climate change and the urgent need for action become ever clearer, air transport and other polluting industries are expanding on a massive scale. Supposed green pioneers such as Germany are supporting the trade with public money it hands out through its export credit agency Hermes AG. This joint briefing note by urgewald and FERN focuses on these contradictions and looks for a way out of a system that speaks of concern about climate change whilst funding some of its biggest causes.
PDF iconOPEN658.34 KB

The Ilisu Dam Project: Europe's money would move Turkey away from the acquis communautaire

At the beginning of October 2006, three European export credit agencies are expected to decide whether or not to finance one of the world's most controversial infrastructure projects. Going ahead with the project would mean displacing tens of thousands of people, destroying a significant cultural heritage, and increasing the potential for seroius conflict over water resources in the Middle East. The project also utterly fails to meet EU social and environmental standards - thereby moving accession candidate Turkey away from the EU acquis.
PDF iconOPEN1.18 MB

ECAs and the Licence to Finance: Consultation, Participation and the OECD's Recommendation on Common Approaches

This paper by Nick Hildyard of the Corner House gives recommendations on how to address deficiencies in current ECA policy with regard to consultation and participation and argues that affected communities and indigenous peoples must be recognized as rights holders in the decsion-making process.
PDF iconOPEN925.37 KB


Most recent publications

Still exporting destruction: A civil society assessment of Export Credit Agencies’ compliance with EU Regulation (PE-CONS 46/11)

ECA Watch has prepared this ‘shadow report’ — with the support of other civil society groups — in order to assess current ECA practice in relation to issues such as transparency, public accountability and more generally, their compliance with the EU’s ob
PDF iconshadow report.pdf667.96 KB

Member State compliance with Article 21 of the Lisbon Treaty

On 6 August 2012, ECA Watch and the European Coalition for Corporate Justice sent a letter to the President of the Commission Jose Manuel Barroso requesting a meeting to discuss how the Commission intends to monitor Member State compliance with Article 21 of the Lisbon Treaty and how NGOs can be involved in the elaboration of an appropriate compliance framework

Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) default on its obligations to Export Credit Agencies

Press release launched on the day that more than 30 European non governmental organisations (NGOs)  delivered a letter calling on governments not to fund a new pulp mill proposed by Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), one of the world's most controversial pulp and paper companies. The plant is planned to be build in Sumatra, Indonesia where APP is estimated to have already pulped more than two million hectares of natural rainforests.

Giving human rights credit: EU countries agree to toughen export loan scrutiny

A press release from ECA-Wach, Amnesty International and Eurodad. It welcomes EU permanent representatives' endorsement of the European Parliament’s proposal to make national export credit agencies (ECAs) more accountable for the support they give companies doing business around the world. The three organisations believe this move will increase transparency and human rights compliance and  hope that this will trigger more ambitious reforms in EU capitals, leading to a general reform in global ECA standards.

PDF iconECAs Press Release 290611-1.pdf23.09 KB

Financing nuclear times

This newspaper style publication is available in hard copy from It outlines the history of Export Credit Agencies' support for the nuclear industry and concludes by detailing the destructive projects still in the pipeline.

Export Credit Agencies’ funding of disastrous nuclear projects put in the spotlight at G20 meeting

A press release launched on  the opening day of a meeting of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) Nuclear Energy Agency. It explains how Export Credit Agency (ECA) support for the nuclear industry has increased the burden on indebted nations, fuelled the India, Pakistan arms race and continues to prop up a non financially viable industry. 

PDF iconfunding nuclear times.pdf162.51 KB