(Ecofin Agency) - The Tunisian commercial bank BIAT plans to issue guarantees in favor of cross-border correspondent banks, to support Tunisian operators.
Banque Internationale Arabe de Tunisie (BIAT) has signed a guarantee agreement for 156 million dinars ($50 million) with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). Sealed on October 25, the deal was disclosed by BIAT yesterday, October 30.
The guarantee agreement will help the BIAT better support its import-export business clients.
"This line will enable BIAT to issue guarantees in favor of its cross-border correspondent banks for the confirmation of transactions and also to support the volume of international trade by large Tunisian companies, SMEs, and very small businesses," explained the lender.
The deal will also help extend more commercial loans to Tunisian operators across various sectors.
Banque Internationale Arabe de Tunisie was Tunisia’s fifth-largest bank in terms of net income growth in the second half of 2023. The lender, which is listed on the Tunis Stock Exchange, is 99.44% owned by Tunisian individuals and companies.
EBRD, with which the BIAT sealed the deal, has been active in Tunisia for 11 years. Throughout this period, the European bank has invested nearly €1.9 billion in 63 projects in the country.