Bechtel obtains loan guaranteed by UK export finance for highway project in Serbia
Financing of 430 million euros as part of a first export credit agreement
LONDON, October 18, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Bechtel has reached its first export deal with UK Export Finance to secure a secured loan of 430 million euros for the construction of a 5G-compatible highway in Serbia. UKEF-backed purchase credit facility will help Bechtel in its joint venture with ENKA create € 150 million in value for the UK economy, boosting investment in local communities and supporting jobs . It is also the first export credit agreement concluded by UKEF for the Serbian Ministry of Finance.
The Morava Corridor (Infrastructure Corridor E-761) will be the second major transport artery in Serbia, connecting communities and businesses from Pojate in the east to Preljina in the west, and connecting the north-south highway of the country between the country’s borders with Hungary and North Macedonia.
The announcement was made at this week’s UK Government’s World Investment Summit, hosted by the Prime Minister Boris Johnson in London.
“This welcome support from UK Export Finance will enable Bechtel, together with our partner ENKA, to deliver this transformational infrastructure project using goods and services exported from the UK,” said Brendan Bechtel, Chairman and CEO of Bechtel. “In a time of post-COVID-19 recovery, this investment in the supply chain will benefit both the British and Serbian economies, and also allow Bechtel to continue to develop its partnerships in the two countries. “
“This partnership between Bechtel and UKEF will boost UK exports, boost investment, support jobs and strengthen local economies, helping us to rebuild better after the pandemic,” said Anne-Marie Trevelyan, British Secretary for International Trade. “This week’s Global Investment Summit draws the world’s top investors to the UK, showing why the UK is the best destination for foreign investment. There is no better time to invest in the UK.”
Bechtel Enterprises, the project development and finance arm of Bechtel, supported the Republic of Serbia throughout the financing process with JP Morgan Chase Bank as the lead principal arranger of the facility. Global law firm Ashurst advised JP Morgan and UK Export Finance on the financing.
“This transaction is exemplary of the creative results that can be achieved for our clients when export credit agencies, development finance institutions, international banks and the supply chain work together,” said Keith hennessey, President, Bechtel companies. “We are proud to partner with the Government of Serbia and UKEF in this transformational project and look forward to bringing energy and creativity to deliver this world-class highway to this strategically important part of Europe. We thank the government of Serbia for its active engagement throughout the funding process. “
An important flood defense system is included in the design of the highway to protect surrounding areas from flooding, erosion and the resulting water pollution. It is the first flood mitigation system of this magnitude to be built along a highway in the Balkans, reflecting the Serbian government’s commitment to building the resilience of the national infrastructure in the face of extreme weather conditions.
Bechtel is a trusted engineering, construction and project management partner for industry and government. Differentiated by the quality of our employees and our relentless drive to achieve the best results, we align our capabilities with our clients’ goals to create lasting positive impact. Since 1898, we’ve helped clients complete more than 25,000 projects in 160 countries across seven continents that have created jobs, developed economies, improved the resilience of global infrastructure, increased access to energy, resources and vital services, and make the world a safer and cleaner place.
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