Eximbank, Australia agree to help out SMEs

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Eximbank, Australia agree to help out SMEs

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Export-Import Bank of Korea Chairman and President Lee Duk-hoon, left, and Andrew Hunter, managing director and CEO of the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation of Australia, shake hands. Provided by Korea Eximbank

The Export-Import Bank of Korea (Korea Eximbank) said on Wednesday it signed an agreement to partner with Australia’s Export Finance and Insurance Corporation (EFIC) to help small and medium-sized exporters in both countries make inroads into overseas markets with stronger support from the institutions.

According to the memorandum of cooperation (MOC) signed by the heads of the two institutions, Korea Eximbank and Australia’s EFIC will exchange information on small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) in the two countries to help them enter the two markets as well as third-party countries. With the shared information, the two state-run financial institutions will help discover new markets for SMEs.

They also agreed to share financial products developed for SMEs and to increase financial support for them. Korean businesses with unique technology will be given greater support from Korea Eximbank and EFIC.

Since the Korea-Australia FTA took effect Friday, investments between the two countries are expected to climb, the institutions said.

“The latest MOC has established a foundation for the two institutions to exchange successful cases of financial support for SMEs and to increase workforce exchanges, leading to greater mutual collaboration,” said Lee Duk-hoon, chairman and president of Korea Eximbank.

Lee is scheduled to meet with Gina Rinehart, chairman of Hancock Prospecting, the largest shareholder of the Roy Hill mining project, on Thursday to discuss plans for Korean businesses’ participation in Australian resource development projects.

BY SONG SU-HYUN [ssh@joongang.co.kr]

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