Ex-Im Bank Approves €11M for AMAT Exports

The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) has approved an €11 million [US $14.4 million] loan guarantee that will support the financing of $14 million in exports of solar-cell manufacturing tools and equipment from Applied Materials Inc. to Signet Solar LLC in Germany.

Ex-Im Bank is providing a five-year facility guaranteeing a limited-recourse loan denominated in euros to Signet Solar LLC from the Bank of America. Ex-Im Bank’s five-year loan guarantee is also supporting $5.2 million in local costs for installation and construction that were financed under the loan.

The Applied Materials exports were used to design and construct the Signet Solar Project, a manufacturing facility in Dresden using an Applied Materials SunFab line, that was completed in late 2008 and produces amorphous thin-film silicon photovoltaic (PV) modules. The PV modules are used in end applications by Signet Solar’s customers in Germany, Italy and Spain.

“Ex-Im Bank is pleased to assist in financing these exports by Applied Materials Inc. to Germany, one of the world’s largest markets for solar-energy products. We want to help U.S. exporters in the solar industry take advantage of the opportunities in this market to sustain high-quality jobs in California and other states that are home to these innovative companies,” said Ex-Im Bank Vice Chair Linda Conlin, the chief advocate of Ex-Im Bank’s Environmental Exports Program on the Bank’s board of directors.

Limited-recourse project finance is an arrangement in which Ex-Im Bank assists in lending to newly created project companies and looks to the project’s future cash flows as the source of repayment instead of relying directly on foreign governments, financial institutions or established corporations.

RenewableEnergyWorld.com’s Stephen Lacey talked with Dr. Keshav Prasad, vice president of business development for Signet Solar about the SunFab line and the company’s growth plans at Solar Power International in October. To see this interview, play the video below.

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