Export Credits and the Environment: Work - Plan


The Work-Plan was agreed by the Members of the OECD Working Party on Export Credits and Credit Guarantees (ECG) in April 2000 to facilitate the fulfilment of their mandate from OECD Ministers to strengthen common approaches on the environment and export credits. The Work-Plan is referred to in point 5 of the Action Statement released by the ECG in February 2000.


Against the background of the Action Statement agreed by the Members of the OECD Working Party on Export Credits and Credit Guarantees at their 82nd Meeting in February 2000, the Members are committed to pursuing the following Work-Plan on the issue of export credits and the environment, without prejudice as to outcomes. The Work Plan comprises a list of topics (which is not exhaustive) to be addressed in the further discussions of the Working Group in accordance with the commitments in the Action Statement and to facilitate the fulfilment of the OECD Ministerial Mandate.

(1) "[Members agree to] continue to develop, within their national systems of official export credit support, procedures and methodologies for identifying and assessing the environmental impact of projects."


Aim for completion by November 2000


  • Scope of considerations (e.g. environmental, developmental and social impact of projects)

  • Thresholds

  • Sector considerations

  • Site/location of projects

  • Modifications to existing projects/ "add-on" projects

  • Exemptions from Coverage

Procedures and Practices

  • Elements for screening/quantitative and qualitative factors

  • Extent of screening (e.g. varying according to sector/size of project)

  • Leverage of ECAs (e.g. treatment of sub-contracts)

  • Benchmarking (e.g. IFI guidelines, host country standards)

  • Timing of introduction of procedures and methodologies within national systems

  • Cost/benefit analyses

Environmental Review Practices

  • Environmental guidelines and criteria (e.g. quantitative and qualitative limits and criteria)

Information Gathering on Individual Projects

  • Scope and depth of information (e.g. requirement for an Environmental Impact Assessment)

  • Sources (e.g. NGOs, ECAs, project sponsors, affected parties, recipient governments)

  • Exchange of views on consultations at the national level

Resource Implications for ECAs

  • Costs involved

  • "In-house" expertise; involvement of other Ministries (e.g. Environment); need for external consultants

  • Allocation/responsibility for costs (e.g. on ECA, project sponsor etc.)

(2) "[Members agree to] continue to monitor and evaluate, over time, their own experiences with these procedures and methodologies, as well as their own experiences related to mitigating the environmental impact of individual projects, and share these experiences with the other Members."


Aim for completion by November 2000


  • Elements for monitoring

  • Methodology for monitoring

  • Sharing of information

Evaluation of Information

  • Appropriate elements for inclusion in evaluation of environmental effects

  • Methodology for evaluation

Mitigation Measures

  • Methodology for measuring mitigation

  • Consideration of influence of ECA (e.g. if only supporting small sub-contract)

  • "Conditionality" or otherwise of proposed measures (e.g. will official support be dependent on the mitigating steps being followed); Covenants

  • Environmental management systems

Information Exchange

  • Methodology for sharing of evaluations

  • Appropriate recipients of information

  • Enhancing the Environmental Information Exchange for Larger Projects

  • Constraints (e.g. confidentiality concerns)

(3) "[Members agree] based on ECAs' experiences (e.g. with Environmental Information Exchanges), [to] explore ways to synthesise common elements and best practices related to environmental review and impact assessment in order to strengthen a framework of common approaches amongst export credit agencies."


Aim for completion by November 2001, but allowing for progress report to OECD Ministers in second quarter 2001)

Common Elements and Best Practices

  • Collecting and mapping of information relating to i) and ii) above (e.g. on new and established environmental screening systems)

  • Synthesis of information on common elements and best practices

Framework of Common Approaches

  • Methodology for developing a framework

  • Factors for consideration (e.g. mitigation of environmental risk; avoidance of distortions of competition etc.)

  • Modalities of disseminating the Framework

(4) "[Members agree to] exchange views on an informal basis with appropriate stakeholders."



Consultations (e.g. with NGOs, recipient countries, BIAC, TUAC etc.)

  • Appropriate third parties

  • Sovereign rights of recipient governments

  • Public dissemination issues


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