Exim Bank of India hosted the 11th Annual meeting of Asian Exim Banks Forum in Goa on October 6-7, 2005. The theme for the meeting was 'Promoting Regional Cooperation Through Trade Financing'. The meeting was attended by the nine member institutions at the highest level viz. India, Japan, China, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Australia with Asian Development Bank, Manila, the multilateral financing institution as a permanent invitee. Mr. T. C. Venkat Subramanian, Chairman & Managing Director, Exim Bank of India, in his welcome remarks highlighted that the Asian Exim Banks Forum was initiated by Exim India in 1996 in order to enhance cooperation and forge a stronger link among its member institutions. Stating that this year's meeting marked the completion of a decade of successful cooperation among Asian Exim Banks, Mr. Subramanian added that the forum seeks to provide a mechanism for participating countries to enter into a process of dialogue while providing an opportunity for cooperation in areas that transcend trade and investment, such as social sectors capacity building and governance. Mr. Subramanian also welcomed observers from KfW (Germany), BNDES (Brazil), OECD (Paris), UNCTAD (Geneva) and Sri Lanka.
In his address at the Inaugural Session, Mr. Su Zhong, Vice President China Eximbank, who were the previous year's host, underscored the growing importance of the Asian region in international trade and added that Asian Exim Banks have played a unique and important role in both enhancing economic cooperation among different countries and invigorating regional economy. Mr. Koji Tanami, Deputy Governor & Managing Director, JBIC, underlined the role of Asian Exim Banks in contributing to the stability and economic development of individual countries, of the region and eventually of the whole world by making the best use of financial tools and their status as governmental agencies. Mr. Tanami informed that JBIC had already started preparations as hosts for the 12th Annual Forum and asserted that they would establish a common theme that would prove the excellent capacity of Asian Exim Banks to cope with rapidly evolving international environments.
At the Technical Sessions, topics covered included outcome of Training Committee meeting hosted by Exim Malaysia, Role of Asian Exim Banks in SME Development led by Exim India, Regional Export Financing Initiatives led by ADB, Perspective on Export Credit led by OECD, World FDI Trends and Korea Eximbank's Experience in FDI Financing and Role of Asian Exim Banks in Tsunami Reconstruction led by JBIC.
The speech on Training Committee focused on the outcome of the 1st Training Committee meeting including the terms of reference, various aspects of training and models and characteristics of training programmes. The presentation on SMEs brought out the importance of SMEs as engine of growth, status of SMEs in India, issues on SME development, Exim India's experience in SME financing and the role of Exim Banks in SME development. The presentation on Regional Export Financing Initiatives dwelt upon the need for a new collaboration strategy between ADB and Regional Exim Banks and outlined a broad structure for such a strategy. The talk on by OECD on Export Credit provided an insight into the OECD arrangement as also export credit issues related to WTO. The presentation on Koreaexim focused on trends in global FDI, position of ECA in FDI financing, FDI trends in Korea, and experiences of Korea Exim Bank in financing overseas investment. The presentation by JBIC highlighted how Exim Banks can collaborate and contribute to recovery and reconstruction efforts after natural disasters, JBIC's efforts in this direction and some proposals on post-disaster recovery and reconstruction.
The Forum deliberated on the role of Asian Exim Banks in financing and developing SMEs who represent a dynamic segment through their contribution to national economic growth, employment generation, exports. The Forum also considered regional export financing mechanisms under the auspices of Asian Development Bank. The role that Asian Exim Banks can play in natural disaster management in the specific context of the recent Tsunami experience was also discussed. Considering the linkages between trade and investment, the Forum deliberated on role that Exim Banks can play in facilitating two way Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows.
On the occasion, Exim Bank of India and Exim Bank of Thailand signed a Bilateral Guarantee Facility Agreement for US$ 50 mn. Exim Bank of Thailand also signed a Bilateral L/C Confirmation Facility Agreement with Exim Bank of Malaysia.
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