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2014 – A year of divergent events

Information on Finnvera’s operations in 2014

The year 2014 started on a more positive note than the past years, but political crises blurred the outlook again. The cautious and anticipatory atmosphere caused by the general economic situation was reflected in the operations of companies and, through client enterprises, in Finnvera’s operations. Fortunately, the prospects reported by many client enterprises at the turn of the year seemed to have improved again slightly.

The Finnish financial markets operated better than some individual opinions would suggest but were still unusually polarised in 2014. In particular, smaller companies reported financing difficulties in cases where the company’s balance sheet structure had weakened. Demand for export financing remained at a high level. Finnvera’s opportunities to provide financing for enterprises were increased through both legal amendments and Government decisions, especially during the latter half of 2014.

“Finland needs new businesses and new growth enterprises, and we facilitate the creation of these success stories by using our improved financing opportunities,” says CEO Pauli Heikkilä.

Working capital needed

In 2014, Finnvera’s financing for SMEs totalled EUR 1.0 billion, which was about one fifth more than in 2013. Some of this increase was due to the rescheduling of financing granted previously. The bulk of the financing granted, or 49 per cent, was used to finance working capital. Less financing than the year before was needed for company reorganisations and investments. The sectors that received the most financing were industry, services to business, and trade and consumer services.

At the end of 2014, outstanding commitments for SME financing totalled EUR 2.8 billion.

The volume of offers for export credit guarantees increased

The volume of guarantee offers given increased by about half on the previous year, to EUR 5.0 billion. The growth was partly explained by the fact that some agreement negotiations associated with exports, which had still been in progress the year before, were brought to a conclusion in 2014.

In total, 88 per cent of the guarantees offered concerned the traditional sectors of Finnish capital goods exports, such as shipbuilding, telecommunications and the forest industry. Seen against the previous year, the most rapid growth was recorded in offers given for exports to industrialised countries and Latin American countries. Their combined share was 86 per cent. The largest volumes of guarantees were offered for the United States, Finland and Germany.

At the end of 2014, outstanding commitments for export financing totalled EUR 12.2 billion.

Additional information:
Pauli Heikkilä, Chief Executive Officer, tel. +358 29 460 2400

Finnvera publishes the financial statements for the period 1 January to 31 December 2014 on 27 February 2015 and the Annual Report during week 11.