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Factsheet for measure GR-2020-12/2538 Updated – measures in Greece

Short-term Export Credit Insurance Scheme

Προγράμματα του Οργανισμού Ασφάλισης Εξαγωγικών Πιστώσεων (ΟΑΕΠ)

Country Greece , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 19 March 2020
Context COVID-19, Restructuring Support Instruments
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Measures related to foreign trade
Author Elena Kousta (INE GSEE) and Eurofound
Measure added 23 June 2022 (updated 01 April 2023)

Background information

The Export Credit Insurance Organisation (ECIO - ΟΑΕΠ) insures, against commercial and political risks of non-payment, the export credits granted by Greek exporters to foreign buyers who buy Greek products, services, or even projects. ECIO also insures, against political risks, the investments undertaken abroad by Greek entrepreneurs. During the COVID-19 pandemic the greek government announced that Greek exporters can secure the coverage of their invoices at 100% of their value to all customers from the Member States of the EU, and also those from the UK, USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway, and Iceland through ECIO.

Content of measure

The Export Credit Insurance Organisation (ECIO) established by L.1796/1988, is an autonomous legal entity in private law, a non-profit organisation, supervised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, while its state guarantee capital amounts to  €1.47 billion as of June 2020.

The ECIO implements the following range of five insurance programmes:

  1. Short-term export credit insurance schemes: under these schemes, short-term export credits (up to two years) can be insured against both commercial and political risks.
  2. Medium-to-long-term export credit insurance schemes: medium-term (two to five years) or long-term export credits (more than five years) can be insured against commercial and political risks.
  3. Construction works insurance schemes: construction works by Greek companies abroad are covered in the case of non-payment by public- and private-sector debtors in foreign countries.
  4. Buyer’s credit insurance schemes: in contrast with the other schemes,ECIO insures credits provided by banks (whether Greek or foreign, with branches in Greece) to foreign importers so that they can purchase Greek products.
  5. Foreign investment insurance schemes: foreign investment insurance schemes cover non-commercial political risks associated with force majeure (e.g. war), political decisions and measures by the host country of the investment (e.g. nationalisations, expropriations), with bans on the transfer of foreign exchange, and with major changes to the legal status of protection of foreign investments, so that the investment is no longer viable.

During the COVID-19 pandemic the Greek government announced that Greek exporters can secure the coverage of their invoices at 100% of their value to all customers from the Member States of the EU, and also those from the UK, USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway, and Iceland through ECIO. This, approved by the Commission, as part of state aid to affected businesses, includes public short-term export credit insurance for all countries, without each Member State having to prove that the respective country is temporarily 'non-marketable'. Countries in a state of bankruptcy, at war, or affected by force majeure are classified as countries with 'non-marketable risks'. Therefore, any export to the above countries can have a public guarantee, as long as the exporter submits a relevant request to the 'state insurer' (in the case of Greece, the ECIO) to be included in the short-term insurance schemes. It is noted that ECIO already has a short-term insurance scheme. Private insurance companies can also provide short-term insurance of export credits guaranteed by the government if decisions are taken to provide state guarantees to private institutions. Under the interim framework, the measure will be in effect until 31 December 2020; however, the European Commission will assess whether to extend the temporary exemption three months before the end of 2020.


The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

31 March 2022

Under new Law 4918/OGJ 68/A/31.03.2022 the Export Credit Insurance Organization (O.A.E.P.) converts into a Limited Company with the title 'Hellenic Export Credit Company S.A.' The new expanded portfolio will offer insurance and financing solutions, regardless of the size of the company, which is often an exclusion factor from the corresponding services. As such, the company takes an active role in the field of credit insurance for very small and small-medium size export companies that do not have access to coverage from the insurance market.

Use of measure

As of 2020, ECIO's value amounts to €1.47 billion; this includes its state guarantee capital.

According to ECIO's management, the programmes are not only an excellent combination of insurance and financing ensuring export credits, but also a solution to the vast problem of liquidity faced by Greek enterprises. On the opposite, according to ECIO's management, the programmes while in operation for several years have not reached the public, resulting in limited disclosure of the organisation's role and work. Additionally, there is still need for attracting new exporters.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers SMEs
Larger corporations
Importing/Exporting companies
Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
European Funds
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown



Views and reactions



  • 31 March 2022: Law 4918/2022: Conversion of the Export Credit Insurance Organization into a Limited Company, ratification of its Statute and other provisions (
  • 31 March 2022: Μετατροπή του Οργανισµού Ασφάλισης Εξαγωγικών Πιστώσεων (Ο.Α.Ε.Π.) σε Ανώνυµη Εταιρεία (


Eurofound (2022), Short-term Export Credit Insurance Scheme, measure GR-2020-12/2538 (measures in Greece), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.