Belfast Telegraph

Northern Bank backs initiative to assist firms eyeing export market

By Clare weir

Northern Bank has become the first 'native' bank to back a new government initiative which could extend opportunities available to aspiring exporters here.

UK Export Finance, the UK's official export credit agency, has launched the Bond Support Scheme.

By partnering with UK Export Finance to offer this Bond Support Scheme, Northern Bank says that credit risk is effectively shared between the bank and UK Export Finance, meaning it can offer greater levels of export support to both new and existing customers.

Northern Bank's head of trade and export finance, Ruth Graham, said that the bank is increasingly seeing customers seeking out new export markets in efforts to maintain and grow their business amid ongoing challenging economic times.

"With this comes increasing customer demand for trade finance-related bond and guarantee products to support their export activity, often required by buyers in foreign jurisdictions before signing a contract," she said

Niall Harkin, Northern Bank's senior corporate banking manager, added: "Similar schemes have already been actively embraced by our sister banks in the Danske Group and have proven to be hugely successful.

"Export has been identified as one of the essential components of sustainable economic recovery and long-term growth in the draft Northern Ireland Economic Strategy and, as a leading local bank, Northern Bank is strongly committed to supporting this strategy by making it more straightforward for aspiring and experienced exporters to achieve their full potential."