EDC and National Bank of Canada partner to enhance credit for Canadian companies

Montreal, 5 May 2009 - 

Export Development Canada (EDC) and National Bank Financial Group today announced that National Bank of Canada has become the first major Canadian financial institution to adopt EDC’s enhanced Export Guarantee Program, enabling it to advance more loans to Canadian small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

“In this tight credit environment, we recognize that any additional risk mitigation can go a long way for our banking partners to lend more,” said Eric Siegel, President and CEO of EDC. “We are pleased that the National Bank is committed to using our new Export Guarantee Program when it can help their SME clients expand exports and investments abroad.”
 
“We are proud to join forces with EDC to offer our SME clients additional credit facilities that will help them increase their exports and thereby grow their business,” said Pierre Dubreuil, Senior Vice-President – International and Commercial Products at National Bank Financial Group.
EDC’s improved guarantee program provides greater coverage to Canadian financial institutions on qualified loans to their exporting clients, guaranteeing up to 90 per cent of the loan value and up to 100 per cent on Canadian direct investment abroad. By having their risk reduced, Canada’s financial institutions can take on more transactions for their customers.

For loans up to and including $500,000, EDC has increased the coverage to banks to a maximum of 90 per cent, from 75 per cent. For loans between $500,000 and $10 million inclusive, EDC now covers up to 75 per cent, compared to 50 per cent previously.

With the growing importance of direct investment abroad towards increasing a company’s trade capacity, EDC can also provide up to 100 per cent coverage for qualified financing related to such investments when part of a larger package of bank credit. 

In 2008, 314 SMEs benefited from EDC’s export guarantee products, up from 172 in 2007. The overall guarantee coverage, used by 22 Canadian financial institutions, was valued at more than $323 million, an increase from $220 million in 2007.

About National Bank of Canada
National Bank of Canada, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2009, is an integrated group that provides comprehensive financial services to consumers, small and medium-sized enterprises and large corporations in its core market, while offering specialized services to its clients elsewhere in the world. The National Bank offers a full array of banking services, including retail, corporate and investment banking. It is an active player on international capital markets and, through its subsidiaries, is involved in securities brokerage, insurance and wealth management as well as mutual fund and retirement plan management. National Bank has close to $137 billion in assets and, together with its subsidiaries, employs 17,199 people. The Bank’s securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (NA:TSX). For more information, visit the Bank’s website at www.nbc.ca.

About EDC
EDC is Canada’s export credit agency, offering innovative commercial solutions to help Canadian exporters and investors expand their international business. EDC’s knowledge and partnerships are used by more than 8,300 Canadian companies and their global customers in up to 200 markets worldwide each year. EDC is financially self-sustaining, a recognized leader in financial reporting and economic analysis, and has been named one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers for eight consecutive years.

Information (The telephone number provided below is for the exclusive use of journalists and other media representatives.):

Denis Dubé
Senior Manager, Public Relations
National Bank Financial Group
Tel.: 514-394-8644

Phil Taylor         
Export Development Canada
Tel: (613) 598-2904  
Blackberry: ptaylor@edc.ca