§ Mr. Wareing
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what is the nature of export credits guarantee cover currently available for Russia; how much of that cover has been taken up by British companies; what the criteria for cover are; what sort of commercial ventures this cover is intended to stimulate; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Needham
ECGD has made US$800 million of medium to long-term export credit and investment insurance cover available for United Kingdom business in the Russian Federation. Approximately US$180 million of this ECGD cover has been utilised and two further projects, currently in negotiation, are expected to use up about another US$420 million. It has been agreed with the Russian authorities that the ECGD cover should be used to support projects which will earn hard currency earning or save foreign exchange, by means of import substitution or are in certain priority sectors: energy, minerals, food processing or distribution, health care or medical equipment. It is intended that the cover should be used primarily to support self-financing projects which, after completion, should earn much-needed foreign exchange revenues for Russia.