OREANDA-NEWS  On 21 October was announced, that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) increased its direct loan facility extended to Kazakhstan-based BTA Bank JSC to USD 120 million from USD 55 million.

The borrowed funds will be directed to finance supplies of U.S. agricultural products to Kazakhstan within GSM-102 program.

BTA Bank has been vigorously applying these funds for its clients who import U.S. goods specified in the program, while issuing 3-year loans to importers. These guarantees allow for a considerable cut in loan costs due to beneficial refinancing of BTA Bank’s liabilities by U.S. banks.

This borrowing is a vital injection at this time when the cost of financing has risen not only for Kazakhstan’s banks but also for Western financial institutions. The involvement in this program conforms fully to BTA strategy, where support to SMEs is a notable line of activities.

This more than a 2-fold increase of BTA credit facility amid the global financial turmoil evidences a sound image of the Bank as a borrower both among investors and Western state-owned institutions.

GSM-102 is the Export Credit Guarantee Program of USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation designed to bolster food and agricultural exports to Kazakhstan and other Eurasian countries. GSM-102 underwrites credit extended by the private banking sector in the United States to approved foreign banks.
JSC BTA Bank is a major banking institution in the CIS and the region’s expansion leader.

BTA’s consolidated assets grew in H1 2008 to a total of 3,356 billion tenge (USD 27.8 billion); capital to a total of 474 billion tenge (USD 3.9 billion). As of July 1, 2008 BTA’s consolidated net profit amounted to 27,830 million tenge (USD 231 million).

The network of BTA’s strategic partner banks extends to four regions of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Turkey. BTA’s representative offices operate in Russia, Ukraine, China and UAE.

The Bank has an extensive regional chain throughout Kazakhstan (22 branches and 277 service outlets), largest network of ATMs (778) and self-service terminals (160). It has more than 1.3 million retail and 100,000 corporate customers.

This year The Banker magazine placed BTA among TOP 200 banks, where it scored number 173 vs. 295 in 2007. In 2006 and 2007, BTA was named the "Bank of the Year in the CIS", based on a poll of the Commonwealth’s leading financial experts by the influential Itogi magazine, and "Best Bank in Central Asia" according to the Euromoney. Oxford-based European Business Assembly (EBA) awarded to BTA its 2007 "Best Enterprise of Europe" in the banking sector of Eurasia.