Objective 5.6 - Take biodiversity concerns into account in national export credit policy.
Export Credit Agencies provide financial support (loans, guarantees, insurance) for projects in southern and eastern Europe. They aim to help national industries abroad. Export credit policies may have very significant impacts on environment and biodiversity in particular (for example by supporting construction projects of dams, pipelines, etc.).
The impact on biodiversity needs to be fully incorporated in the procedures for evaluation of projects applying for support by export credit agencies. It is important to examine the environmental criteria used to assess investments by Export Credit Agencies and other publicly funded financial institutions and to ensure that these criteria take biodiversity into consideration. Project screening procedures must ensure that activities that lead to irreversible damage to biodiversity are not promoted.
Export Credit Agencies need to be more transparent in the eligibility criteria used and indicate which international obligation and engagements subscribed by Belgium they take into account. The following actions could also help credit export agencies to take biodiversity concern into account in national export credit policy:
- Implement a harmonised procedure to check whether a project respond to the international biodiversity related obligations and engagements subscribed by Belgium.
- Organise training for credit export agencies staff Belgium’s international obligations and engagements related to biodiversity. Another measure to promote integration of biodiversity in credit export policies is to ask companies to sign a declaration of intent setting out the commitments of the companies to meet the objectives of the national biodiversity strategy.