Q2 2018: application inflow boosted by new ship financing offer

Export Credit Norway recorded a further strong increase in applications received from both offshore and onshore industry players and SMBs in the second quarter of the year. The application figures confirm that the company’s new ship solution has been well-received by shipping companies and shipyards.

The positive trend in application numbers and volumes initially observed in Q1 2018 continued in Q2. Overall, Export Credit Norway received 75 loan applications (Q2 2017: 62) representing a total application volume of NOK 62.2 billion (Q2 2017: NOK 29.7 billion).

“The primary drivers of application volume are stable, high oil prices, the new ship financing solution and more systematic marketing. The significant number of applications from small and medium-sized businesses confirms the importance of the latter,” says Export Credit Norway CEO Otto Søberg.

Export Credit Norway signed new loan agreements valued at NOK 1.4 billion (Q2 2017: NOK 3.4 billion) and disbursed NOK 1.8 billion (Q2 2017: NOK 546 million) in new loans in the second quarter. The company’s lending balance rose to NOK 68.1 billion in Q2, up from NOK 65.9 billion at the end of Q1.

Otto Søberg

Otto Søberg hopes the new ship financing soulution will boost ship construction in Norway.

New ship financing solution

The company’s new ship financing solution, which provides Norwegian purchasers with financing for vessels constructed at shipyards in Norway and intended for use in Norwegian waters, was formally approved by the King in Council on Friday 22 June, and became operational on 1 July. By the end of June, Export Credit Norway had received 19 applications valued more than NOK 60 billion under the solution. The majority of these concern financing for wellboats and fishing vessels.

“These figures indicate that, as intended, the ship financing solution can increase the number of ships built in Norway rather than abroad. The inclusion of the offer among the instruments at our disposal will give a real boost to both the company and the maritime sector,” says Søberg.

Growth in the SMB, renewable energy and onshore industry segments

Forty per cent of applications received by Export Credit Norway in Q2 2018 came from small and medium-sized businesses in the maritime, renewable and onshore industry sectors. These SMB applications accounted for 6.1% of the total application volume for the quarter.

“The identification and realisation of new export businesses and industries starts in the SMB segment. The inflow of applications from both offshore and onshore companies confirms the success of our efforts to raise export financing awareness among SMBs in different sectors. This is an ongoing priority, and we will therefore maintain our targeted marketing measures going forward,” says Søberg.

In the second quarter, the number of export financing applications from industrial and renewable energy companies remained stable and high from a historical perspective. Moreover, applications are increasingly resulting in new contracts.

“Although the volumes involved remain relatively small, we have almost doubled our industry and renewable energy lending balance over the past year, from NOK 1.1 billion to NOK 2.1 billion. These sectors are among our top priorities,” says Søberg.

Quarterly report Q2 2018
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Published 24. Aug 2018