Credendo – Export Credit Agency

About Credendo – Export Credit Agency

Credendo  Export Credit Agency was established in 1939 as ONDD. It is the official Belgian export credit agency.

Backed by the state, its mission is to promote international trade relations, providing medium-term and long-term trade credit insurance cover.

In recent years, Credendo  Export Credit Agency has undergone significant changes, evolving from a traditional export credit insurance agency into an international player that today heads Credendo Group. Its solidity is underlined by its AA rating from Standard & Poor’s and cover capacity of EUR 30 billion.

In addition to traditional export credit insurance, Credendo  Export Credit Agency’s offer includes financial guarantees and direct financing. Its activities mainly focus on non-OECD countries as these markets involve the larger part of clients’ risks.

History

1921 The Ministry of Economic Affairs sets up the Delcredere Commission to guarantee Belgian export transactions.
1935 The Delcredere Commission is separated from the Ministry and becomes the Belgian Export Credit Agency Office national du ducroire | Nationale Delcrederedienst (ONDD, known today as Credendo  Export Credit Agency) (by Royal Decree of 10 January 1935).
1939

Complete reorganisation of Credendo  Export Credit Agency as an autonomous public financial institution with legal personality and guaranteed by the Belgian State (by Law of 31 August 1939).

Cover of political risks.

1949 Cover of import transactions (by Law of 21 April 1949).
1956 Cover is extended to commercial risk.
1958 Credendo  Export Credit Agency mission extended to include the promotion of foreign trade in general (by Law of 31 December 1958).
1962 Credendo  Export Credit Agency obtains the permission to contribute to the funding of the transactions it insures (by Law of 27 July 1962).
1964 Credendo  Export Credit Agency is authorised to insure certain transactions directly on behalf of the State (by Law of 3 June 1964).
1970 Credendo  Export Credit Agency starts to insure Belgian foreign direct investments (by Law of 30 December 1970).
1972 Exchange rate risks relating to export transactions can be insured by Credendo  Export Credit Agency (by Royal Decree of 9 May 1972).
1991 Credendo Export Credit Agency mission extended to include the promotion of international economic relations in the broadest sense (by Law of 17 June 1991).
1996 Creation of an insurance market window: activity without direct Belgian interest, but at market conditions (BoD decision of 15 July 1996).
2004

Creation of private company Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks (formerly known as Credimundi), offering short-term whole turnover cover:

  • 100% shareholding
  • coverage includes domestic transactions (BoD decision of 23 September 2004).

Creation of Credendo  Excess & Surety (formerly known as Trade Credit) offering excess of loss cover:

  • 25% shareholding: extension of product range (excess of loss policies) (BoD decision of 23 November 2004).
2005 Forfaiting product is launched. Credendo Export Credit Agency buys exporters’ accounts receivable due by their foreign buyers, thus providing funding.
2006

Financial guarantee products for bank loans are launched.

50% shareholding in the single risk credit and political risk insurer Credendo Single Risk (formerly known as Garant), Vienna.
Remaining 50% with Ingosstrakh, Moscow (BoD decision of 13 September 2005).

Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks opens a branch in London (UK).

2007

Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks acquires a stake of 33% in Komerčni ύvěrová pojišt'ovna EGAP (Credendo  Short-Term EU Risks, formerly known as KUPEG), subsidiary of EGAP.

2008 Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks opens a branch in Paris (France).
2009

Creation of Credendo  Ingosstrakh Credit Insurance (formerly known as INGO-ONDD), a joint venture with Ingosstrakh, Moscow.

Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks increases shareholding in Credendo Short-Term EU Risks to 66.66%.

Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks opens a branch in Wiesbaden (Germany).

2010

Increase shareholding in Credendo  Ingosstrakh Credit Insurance to 66.67%.

Increase shareholding in Credendo  Single Risk to 83%.

2011 Credendo  Single Risk obtains its first-ever rating from A.M. Best (A-).
2012

Increase shareholding in Credendo Excess & Surety to 55.1%

Credendo  Single Risk obtains its first-ever rating from Fitch (A-).

Credendo  Short-Term EU Risks opens a branch in Bratislava (Slovakia).

2013

Credendo  Export Credit Agency launches a new product: Export Funding Guarantee.

Increase shareholding in Credendo  Single Risk to 96%.

Credendo  Short-Term Non-EU Risks opens a branch in Milan (Italy)

Consolidation as Credendo Group, more powerfully articulating the shared values, approach and strength of its companies.

2014

The Board of Directors of Credendo  Export Credit Agency is reduced from 20 to 12 members.

Increase shareholding in Credendo  Excess & Surety to 100%.

Credendo  Export Credit Agency extends its Export Funding Guarantee for use in ‘covered bonds’ financing programmes.

2015 Credendo  Short-Term EU Risks opens a branch in Warsaw (Poland).
2016

Credendo Group adopts ‘Get ready’ strategic plan 2016-2018.

Credendo  Export Credit Agency sets-up a dedicated SME’s desk.

Credendo  Export Credit Agency launches a new product: the buyer Credit.

Credendo – Export Credit Agency becomes sole shareholder in Credendo – Short-Term EU Risks.

Governance

Board of Directors

Vincent REUTER

Chairman

Michel DELBAERE

Vice-Chairman

Ludivine HALBRECQ

Member, representative of the Minister of Finance

Pieter-Jan VAN STEENKISTE

Substitute member

Thierry DENUIT

Member, representative of the Minister for Foreign Affairs

Xavier DE CUYPER

Substitute member

Henk MAHIEU

Member, representative of the Minister for Economy

Ivan VAN den BERGH

Substitute member

Els HAELTERMAN

Member, representative of the Minister for Development Cooperation

Yves DRICOT

Substitute member

Claire TILLEKAERTS

Member, representative of the Flemish regional government

Thomas FIERS

Substitute member

Georges STIENLET

Member, representative of the Flemish regional government

Annemarie VAN de WALLE

Substitute member

Jean-Jacques WESTHOF

Member, representative of the Walloon regional government

Jean-Jacques GABRIEL

Substitute member

Pascale DELCOMMINETTE

Member, representative of the Walloon regional government

Francis MULLERS

Substitute member

Katrien VAN KRIEKINGE

Member, representative of the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region

Frederic CONVENT

Substitute member

Frédéric LONCOUR

Member, representative of the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region

Christopher KASHALE ILUNGA

Substitute member

Management

Dirk Terweduwe, Chief Executive Officer, in charge of:

  • Compliance
  • Finance
  • Human Resources
  • Internal Audit
  • Reinsurance
  • Risk Management
  • Office of Strategy Management

Frank Vanwingh, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, in charge of:

  • Information Technologies
  • Legal and Claims
  • Products
  • Underwriting & Account Management

Nabil Jijakli, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, in charge of:

  • Business Development
  • Communication, CSR
  • Facility Management
  • Sales
  • Procurement

 

Rating

In a report published on 09 July 2018 Standard & Poor’s affirmed its ‘AA’ long-term issuer credit rating and the ‘A-1+’ short-term issuer credit rating on Credendo  Export Credit Agency. The outlook is stable.

The ratings mirror those Standard & Poor’s gave the Kingdom of Belgium.

In December 2007, Credendo  Export Credit Agency was assigned its first-ever rating by credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s. Credendo  Export Credit Agency was given the second-best long-term rating: AA+, and the best short-term rating: A-1+.

 

Agreements

Credendo  Export Credit Agency can establish any relationship with foreign partners or international institutions to help attain its purpose. Given the increasing internationalisation of business, Credendo  Export Credit Agency, along with a string of foreign counterparts, has introduced mechanisms to facilitate partnerships between Belgian and foreign firms for transactions on third markets. These are essentially foreign incorporation, joint insurance, reinsurance, parallel insurance and general co-operation framework agreements.

If, in other words, parties or even subcontractors from several different countries are involved in a project, Credendo  Export Credit Agency can work in conjunction with other credit insurers, institutions or banks at home or abroad to be able to offer a solution.

Internationally, Credendo  Export Credit Agency is active in several credit insurance working groups:

  • within the European Union;
  • within the OECD. The mission of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is to promote policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world. OECD countries have an agreement regarding the use of officially supported export credits with a repayment term of over two years. The framework prevents unfair competition based on financial terms of export credits;
  • within the Berne Union (International Union of Credit and Investment Insurers), of which Credendo  Export Credit Agency is a member. The mission of the Berne Union is to actively facilitate cross-border trade by supporting international acceptance of sound principles in export credits and foreign investments and by providing a forum for professional exchanges among its members.

In addition, Credendo Export Credit Agency takes part in the Paris Club talks on debt rescheduling. The Paris Club is an informal group of official creditors whose role is to find coordinated and sustainable solutions to the payment difficulties experienced by debtor countries.

Corporate social responsability

Policies

Credendo – Export Credit Agency has adopted the Group Integrity Policy containing the core ethical principles and a uniform set of rules which anyone working for Credendo should adhere to, both internally and towards any other person who has a relationship with any of the Credendo entities.

The primary objective of this Integrity Policy is to define and promote the statutory and regulatory requirements as well as the internal standards and values laid down by Credendo in order to guarantee the integrity of the Company, its subsidiaries and branches, and all the persons working within the Company.

These integrity principles are further elaborated in a Code of Conduct and in other specific policies and procedures containing practical guidelines regarding the concrete application of these principles in the day-to-day activities of each Credendo entity.

The integrity principles relate to subjects such as preserving the clients’ interests in a loyal, fair and professional way, the rules for the correct handling of gifts or invitations, fair competition, the protection of personal data, acting against discrimination, the application of sound procurement principles, combatting against corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing and other sorts of unethical or illegal behaviour.

The Compliance Officer is responsible for acting proactively in these integrity domains and for monitoring and improving adherence to these principles within Credendo – Export Credit Agency.

Ethics

Corporate Social Responsibility

Apart from striving for economic and social gains (prosperity), Credendo  Export Credit Agency also considers the effects business are having on the environment (planet) and urges companies to have consideration for any local populations (people).

That is why Credendo  Export Credit Agency assesses the environmental and social impacts of all transactions for which applications of cover are received. It also verifies whether no human rights violations are implied. Credendo  Export Credit Agency takes into account the interests of both the civil society and the export community, with commercial confidentiality, quick decisions and a level playing field for competitors being prime concerns.

Context

OECD

The basis of the impact analysis is inspired by the OECD ‘Recommendation of the council on common approaches for officially supported exports credits and environmental and social due diligence (The “common approaches”)’ . This Recommendation calls for environment-related requirements for export deals to qualify for export credit support from the OECD governments’ Export Credit Agencies (ECAs). It requires these agencies to review projects for their potential environmental impact and to benchmark them against international standards, such as those of the World Bank Group.

Credendo  Export Credit Agency has taken an active role in negotiations on the OECD Common Approaches. Based on the first text, which was approved in 2000, we drew up an environmental policy that came into effect on 1 January 2002. The text was revised in 2003 and 2007, and the internal procedure was adapted accordingly.

Credendo Export Credit Agency regularly exchanges information with other OECD Members to promote a global level playing field for officially supported export credits.

Environmental impacts are the project-related impacts on the environment as a result of the construction and operation of the project. Social impacts are the project-related impacts on the local communities directly affected by the project and on the people involved in the construction and operation of the project. These social impacts encompass relevant adverse project-related human rights impacts.

According to the OECD Common Approaches, only projects, goods and services that are directly linked to export projects of which the credit period is 2 years or more are governed by these environmental rules. Credendo  Export Credit Agency has decided to extend the area of application for these rules and applies them, albeit in a slightly modified way, to special cash transactions and investments as well.

Exporters are encouraged to abide by the social standards mentioned in the OECD’s ‘Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises’, which is mainly about equal treatment, human rights and child labour.

The Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises contain a chapter on employment that encourages multinational enterprises to refrain from child labour and to avoid discrimination of all types.

Moreover, foreign contracts and projects help to foster the development of the host countries while strengthening our own economy.

Norms and standards

Credendo Export Credit Agency makes an environmental and social assessment of projects in accordance with different international standards like the Performance Standards of the International Financial Corporation (IFC):

  • Assessment and Management of Environmental and Social Risks and Impacts (PS1)
  • Labour and Working Conditions (PS2)
  • Resource Efficiency and Pollution Prevention (PS3)
  • Community Health, Safety, and Security (PS4)
  • Land Acquisition and Involuntary Resettlement (PS5)
  • Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Management of Living Natural Resources (PS6)
  • Indigenous Peoples (PS7)
  • Cultural Heritage (PS8).

Environmental and social procedures

All applications submitted to Credendo  Export Credit Agency that are located in a sensitive area and are classified :

  • Category A : a project is classified as category A if it has the potential to have significant adverse environmental impacts. Category A, in principle, includes projects in sensitive sectors or located in or near sensitive areas;
  • Category B : a project is classified as category B if its potential environmental impacts are less adverse than those of category A projects. Typically, these impacts are site-specific, few if any of them are irreversible;
  • Category C : a project is classified as category C if it is likely to have minimal or no adverse environmental impacts;
  • Category E : a transaction is classified as category E if it relates to existing installations that are undergoing no material changes in output or function. (An existing installation that is undergoing material changes is classified as A, B or C, depending on the environmental impact).

Credendo  Export Credit Agency reviews not only the potential impacts of the projects but also the measures that can be taken to prevent, minimise, mitigate or remedy adverse impacts and/or to improve environmental and social performance of the projects.

Click here to learn more about  Credendo Export Credit Agency’s environmental and social policy.

Assessed transactions

If a transaction is placed under category A, the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and project details will be made available to the general public at least 30 days prior to the day the offer of cover or the insurance policy is issued. Credendo  Export Credit Agency requires the person or entity responsible for the EIA to publish it. As Credendo  Export Credit Agency does not perform these assessments itself, it is unable to provide insight itself.

Exceptions can be made if the EIA contains confidential information.

Click here to consult the history of transactions assessed
Click here to consult the history of transactions assessed during the current year

Issued policies

This section contains transactions in categories A and B where a policy has been issued.

Click here to consult the history of issued policies
Click here to consult the list of issued policies

Corruption

In their battle against corruption, the OECD member states agreed to a new recommendation in 2006. An action statement already applied to official export credit insurers, resulting from the OECD anti-corruption convention signed on 17 December 1997. The recommendation is a revised and strengthened version of that action statement.

The General Terms of Credendo Export Credit Agency were adapted in accordance with the new OECD recommendation. They provide for several measures in case an insurance client is prosecuted or found guilty of corruption.

The insurance application form was complemented and the due diligence process was converted into a formal procedure.

The insurance application form now includes information on the current legislation. The insurance client must agree to comply with these regulations by submitting a declaration as part of the insurance application procedure.

The client must also state that its name does not appear on the debarment lists of certain international financial institutions and that nor it nor persons acting for its account have been prosecuted or convicted for acts of corruption.

In accordance with the due diligence procedure, the underwriter has the duty to probe insurance applications involving insured parties that have been debarred by an international financial institution for acts of corruption, that have been prosecuted or that have been convicted of corruption in the past.

In cases where an insured party has been found guilty of corruption in the last five years prior to the application, the underwriter has to check whether internal remedies and preventive measures have been taken before support can again be granted for an export credit.

The underwriter also has to check whether the exporter/applicant’s name is on the World Bank’s debarment list regarding corruption.

Finally, the underwriter has to examine all dossiers with equal prudence, including dossiers for any other insurer.

Credendo  Export Credit Agency is not allowed to grant support for a transaction if there is credible evidence for acts of corruption in awarding the export contract.

The Executive Committee and the Board of Directors have to report the information that has prompted a dossier to be rejected because of credible evidence for acts of corruption to the judicial authorities.

Indebtedness

Credendo  Export Credit Agency makes sure the indebtedness of poor under the HIPC initiative (Highly Indebted Poor Countries) does not increase by only accepting projects for such countries if they constitute a priority for their economic development.

The decision not only results from a specific commitment but also from an initiative of the credit insurers within the OECD concerning unproductive expenditure. You can find information on this initiative on the OECD’s website.

Complaints handling and Whistle-blowing

Although Credendo – Export Credit Agency aims to provide a service with all required diligence and professionalism, with respect for honesty and business ethics, compliance with any laws, rules, regulations and the best practices of our sector, there may be circumstances where you believe our behaviour was inappropriate or where you are not satisfied with our service.

In such case, you can address your remark or complaint to your usual contact person to let us know that you have noticed an issue or are not satisfied.
If you feel that action is required on a higher level or that the issue is too sensitive to resolve with your normal contact person, you can directly contact our Compliance department.

Credendo – Export Credit Agency
attn: Compliance Officer
rue Montoyerstraat 3
BE-1000 Brussels

  • by phone: 02/788.88.00 – ask to speak to the Compliance Officer

We will always seek to examine every complaint within a maximum period of 14 days. If this turns out to be impossible, we will notify you in time. In this case, we will inform you about the reason for this delay and the period within which the handling of your file is likely to be completed.

We value your opinion, which will help us to improve our service and to resolve any issues that may exist.

Credendo also has an internal whistle-blowing procedure in place, which allows staff to report in strictest confidence or even anonymously in good faith to the Compliance Officer any gross malpractice or instruction which seems to be in breach of the integrity principles, without fear of reprisal or any other negative consequences as a result of their disclosures.

CIRR

The commercial interest reference rates (CIRR) are the minimum interest rates for officially supported export credits under the OECD Arrangement.

These rates are based on the market rates and are updated on the 15th of each month. They are used by Finexpo for interest stabilisation. The interest stabilisation aims at guaranteeing a fixed interest (the CIRR) to a bank extending a loan to an overseas buyer to finance the export of Belgian capital goods and related services.

The Arrangement is a Gentlemen’s Agreement among the majority of the representatives of the OECD countries. It sets forth the most favourable export credit terms and conditions supported by these countries.

Click here to be informed of the updated CIRRs

Documentation

REPORT ON CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY 2015-2017
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Annual report, 2012
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Annual report, 2011
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Annual report, 2010
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Annual report, 2009
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Annual report, 2008
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Report on corporate social responsibility, 2014
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Report on corporate social responsibility, 2012
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Premium calculation tool
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Route Finder
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Office location

Credendo – Export Credit Agency

Credendo  Export Credit Agency is an autonomous public body with legal personality according to the provisions of the law of 31 August 1939

VAT BE 0203 286 759 RPR | RPM Brussels – IBAN BE40 0010 8026 6263 – BIC GEBABEBB

Address

rue Montoyerstraat 3, 1000 Brussels, Belgium

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