UK Export Finance doubles aid for overseas sustainable energy projects


Compared to 2019, UK Export Finance (UKEF) has issued up to £2.4 billion ($3.3 billion) to fund the implementation of overseas sustainable projects. This is double the aid UKEF issued for such projects in 2019.

The projects were aimed at improving services in the health, transport and energy sectors. As a result, the UK provided the second most export credit support for sustainable projects in 2020, according to the UK Trade & Export Finance Limited.

In the energy sector alone, UKEF issued over £120 million ($166.8 million) for transformation projects.

The energy projects supported by UKEF include a 376MW offshore wind project being developed by Macquarie Green Investment Group and Swancor Renewable Energy as part of efforts to help ensure energy security in Taiwan.

The project, UKEF’s first project in overseas offshore wind, is expected to help Taiwan generate 20% of its power from renewable sources by 2025.

In total, UKEF will be providing £230 million ($319.9 million) for the Taiwanese project.

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Louis Taylor, the CEO of UKEF, said: The UK is a world leader in the generation of offshore wind energy, and UK Export Finance is committed to maximising opportunities for our world-class companies in this sector. By supporting this project, UKEF is making these opportunities a reality in new markets while helping Taiwan reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.”

UKEF also supported UK company Solarcentury to develop two solar energy projects in Spain with a total capacity of 500MWp. Once complete, the two projects will produce enough clean electricity to power quarter of a million homes each year.

Commenting on the £47.6 million ($66.2 million) in funding issued to Solarcentury, Liz Truss, the Secretary of International Trade, said: “British companies are taking the lead in developing solutions that tackle climate change and provide clean energy to thousands.”

Up to £27 million ($37.5 million) issued to the government of Ghana by UKEF will enable UK firm Aqua Africa to implement a solar-power water sterilisation project and provide safe water to some 225,000 people at an affordable price.

Graham Stuart, the UK minister for exports, said: “This major financing of critical work helps to bring prosperity to millions of people around the world. We increased UKEF’s capacity to support overseas projects in over 100 markets last year, and its financing has placed UK businesses at the heart of many important global projects as a result.”

“Free and open trade, backed by global rules, offers the lowest income countries a better deal. As we build back better from the pandemic, we are determined to help developing countries benefit from UK capability and will use our export credit agency, UKEF, to ensure no viable export fails for lack of finance.”