HSBC to fund $24 million to Asiacell in Iraq

Banking major HSBC has signed a $24 million medium term facility to

finance telecommunications equipment and systems supplied by Nokia Siemens
Networks to Asiacell, a mobile operator in Iraq.

The equipment and services supported by this financing will allow
Asiacell to continue to upgrade the quality of services it provides to
customers across Iraq as well as to accommodate ongoing growth in subscriber
numbers to the Asiacell network, according to
media reports.

Nokia Siemens Networks entered into a contract with Asiacell in 2008 and has since been one of the
leading suppliers of telecom equipment and systems to Asiacell.

Nokia Siemens Networks solutions, financed through the credit facility, will be
used to expand and upgrade Asiacell’s network in several different areas of

“Once more, we have been able to support the growth of our customer in
advancing our common goal of providing best-in-class services to the people in
Iraq, both through the provision of our technology and facilitating a financial
solution,” said Christian Boczek, country director of Nokia Siemens
Networks in Iraq.

This medium term financing is insured by the German Government’s Export Credit
Agency (ECA) Euler Hermes Kreditversicherungs AG. Euler Hermes ‘ primary role
is to enhance German companies’ competitiveness abroad.

“Achieving financial close on this ECA facility is another significant
milestone in Asiacell’s history. The support we have obtained here from Euler
Hermes Kreditversicherungs AG, Nokia Siemens Networks and HSBC is important to
Asiacell as an established market leading operator with a strong track record
and an ambitious growth strategy,” said Faruk Mustafa Rasool, chairman of

“The ECA supported financing demonstrates our ability to provide
innovative financing solutions to our customers throughout the region. This ECA
backed facility is the first of its kind in Iraq in many years now. We are
pleased to have worked with Asiacell and HSBC in implementing this financing
and also grateful for the support provided by Euler Hermes Kreditversicherungs
,” said Christiane Schloderer, Structured Finance of Nokia Siemens
Networks Middle East.

Iraq has a substantial infrastructure development requirement and ECA financing
will be a very important part of the associated financing needs. This Euler
Hermes -supported financing emphasises yet again the continued importance and
attraction of medium and long term ECA supported finance to Middle Eastern
borrowers for the financing of capital expenditure.


“It is also a further demonstration of HSBC’s
market leading position in the business, having arranged more ECA backed loans
than any bank in the Middle East in 2010 and in the first half of 2011,
according to data provider Dealogic,” said Simon Lee, Director in HSBC’s
project and export finance team.


By Team
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