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Osborne vows exporters loans boost

Billions of pounds of extra lending will be made available to exporters and costs cut under plans announced by George Osborne to boost Britain's trade with emerging markets.

At the start of a three day trade trip to Brazil, the Chancellor said banks will now have access to a Bank of England facility that will make it less risky for them to give loans to exporters.

Around £4 million of funding will also be used by UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) to support 3,000 companies to increase exports and £2 million will go on expanding the organisation's operations in Latin America and helping to secure contracts in £1.5 billion worth of infrastructure projects around Brazil.

In a speech to business leaders in Rio de Janeiro, Mr Osborne said he was part of the "most pro-Brazil British government for over 70 years".

" We both flourish, we both succeed, we both grow, both create jobs when we do business and work together," he said.

"We have woken up and understood that."

He added: " For decades we have not been exporting enough - not just to Brazil, but to all the fastest growing markets in the world.

"So I am confronting that historic weakness head-on. In my Budget last month I fundamentally reformed our export regime.

"I cut the tax on flights to emerging markets, including Brazil, so that you don't pay more to fly to Rio or São Paulo, or indeed Beijing, than Washington or New York.

"And I massively extended the financial support we give to our exporters.

" I am doubling the amount of government lending for exports and cutting the interest rates on that lending, by a third.

"I am clear: Britain will no longer have some of the least competitive export finance in Europe. We are going to have the most competitive export finance in Europe.

"But the job is never done and so today I can announce further reforms.

"Where Budget boosted government lending - today we will boost private lending too.

"Banks will now have access to a special Bank of England facility that will make it much less risky for them to extend loans to our exporters.

"That should mean billions of extra lending will be made available to our exporters. And it will mean cheaper lending - saving potentially millions of pounds for large projects.

"That's how we make British exporters competitive."

Mr Osborne said he had "discovered one of the toughest jobs in the world" during his trip - refereeing a Brazilian football match.

The Chancellor was at the famed Maracana stadium - which will host the World Cup final in July - to watch Vasco da Gama draw 1-1 with Flamengo in the first leg of the state championship decider.

"Great game and discovered one of toughest jobs in world - ref in Brazilian match," he posted on Twitter.

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