With COVID-19 impacting businesses worldwide, more New Zealand exporters are seeking trade credit insurance to manage non-payment risk from overseas buyers – but high demand means some may find it difficult to get the cover they need.
In partnership with four of the primary trade credit insurers operating in New Zealand, The Treasury's New Zealand Export Credit (NZEC) has streamlined its assessment processes for "top-up cover" coinsurance to help New Zealand exporters and their integral domestic suppliers trade with confidence.
Top-up cover provides an additional layer of trade credit insurance for a specific sale, offered directly by NZEC and backed by New Zealand's Treasury. It can replace primary cover that an insurer has partly withdrawn on a buyer, or provide extra cover where an insurer has not approved the full buyer limit requested.
As well as export sales to international buyers, businesses can also seek top-up cover for domestic sales that are an integral part of the export supply chain.
NZEC now offers streamlined assessment for top-up cover requests which match a business's primary insurer limit, and are up to a $1 million additional limit. Requests over $1 million will be subject to normal NZEC processes including requests for financial statements.
Businesses must have consent from their primary trade credit insurer before seeking top-up cover from NZEC.
Case study: maintaining secure sales through COVID-19
Mr Apple accounts for around 30 percent of New Zealand’s export apple industry, selling to 160 customers across 40 countries. When COVID-19 hit, Mr Apple was determined to keep selling to its international customers with the confidence of trade credit insurance.
Mr Apple utilised a risk-sharing arrangement between NZEC and its primary trade credit insurer, drawing upon NZEC top-up cover to have security of payment for its ongoing sales.