The number of export credit policies issued by the Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India (ECGC) rose around five per cent, even as the country's exports declined considerably amidst the global financial market meltdown.
''We have recorded 13,081 policies as of 28 February 2009, this fiscal as against 12,533 policies in the last fiscal across the country. This shows exporters' growing trust on us. It is significant for us as this rise is against an acute dip in exports,'' PDM Rao, ECGC Jaipur branch manager, said.
There has also been a sharp rise in the payment of claims by the corporation, he added.
''So far this fiscal, we have cleared claims worth Rs202 crore in 578 cases, which is 80 per cent more than the Rs112.1 crore paid in 649 cases in the last fiscal,'' he said.
Exports from the country declined over the past few months since October last year. Exports declined 16 per cent in January, the biggest so far, forcing the government to revise its $200 billion target. Shipments during the April-January period stood at $144.26 billion.
Export credit policies cover exporters' risks arising from political and commercial environment in the importing country and safeguard their payments against default by buyers.
ECGC has witnessed a general rise in the number of insurance claims by exporters as defaults rise in the US.
ECGC is estimated to have cleared claims totalling Rs180 crore between April 2008 and 12 March 2009, under the export credit policy as against Rs119 crore in 2007-08.
During the financial year up to 12 March, claims related to export shipments to the US were estimated to have gone up nearly three times to Rs101 crore compared with Rs35 crore in the corresponding period last year.
Among the sectors, textile was the worst hit, with the agency settling nearly half the claims related to this segment.