UK Export Finance (UKEF), the UK government’s export credit agency, has increased its international business development network in key emerging markets by hiring senior trade representatives in China, Colombia, Kenya and South Africa.

Jiang Wu joins UKEF as Country Head for China, Camilo Neira as Country Head for Colombia, Isaac Kahara as County Head for Kenya and Dirk Van den Berg as Country Head for South Africa.

Working alongside HM Trade Commissioners and British Ambassadors overseas, UKEF’s Country Heads work with overseas governments and multinational companies looking to buy from the UK to create trading opportunities for British businesses.

The global economic impact of the pandemic means UKEF are currently identifying overseas projects with robust fundamentals and long-term growth potential that could benefit from UK expertise.

This includes helping to put UK companies at the heart of the green recovery from coronavirus, following the £2 billion allocated to UKEF’s direct lending facility to finance green projects in the latest budget.

UK Export Finance now has 12 Country Heads operating across 11 countries and will increase this to 20 in strategic trading markets from Asia to North America in the coming months.

UK Minister for Exports, Graham Stuart, said:

We are determined to build the UK into an exporting superpower. Having overtaken France last year to become the world’s fifth largest exporter we are conducting the most ambitious trade policy programme ever pursued by a major economy. We are negotiating free trade agreements and providing improved access to markets around the world, and will ensure that British businesses have access to finance and advice to take advantage of the opportunities created.

That’s why I am delighted that we are adding to the overseas roster of our award-winning export credit agency, UK Export Finance. UKEF’s new experts will work with DIT and FCDO staff to help UK businesses – with a particular focus on green industries and sustainable projects.

Richard Simon-Lewis, Director & Head of Business Development, Marketing & Communications at UKEF, said:

The global financial disruption caused by COVID-19 is likely to be felt for some time. We are building a robust business development pipeline that has sector and regional breadth – with an increasing focus on clean growth – so that UK exporters and suppliers remain in a strong position to trade internationally.

About UK Export Finance:

UK Export Finance is the UK’s export credit agency. It exists to ensure that no viable UK export lacks for finance or insurance from the private market, providing finance and insurance to help exporters win, fulfil and get paid for export contracts.

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