ECA benchmark analysis: SERV among the top performers in an international comparison

Together with the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), SERV commissioned an external consulting firm to conduct a benchmark analysis of public export credit agencies (ECAs) in summer 2020. By systematically learning from other ECAs, SERV is able to develop new strategies and operate even more efficiently on the basis of an established benchmarking model for export credit agencies.

Barbara Hayoz, Chair of the Board at SERV, said: ‘SERV has continuously improved its performance in recent years.’ In an international comparison with other ECAs, SERV achieved very good to excellent efficiency ratings in numerous categories of the results. To maintain its leading position, however, it is essential that SERV keeps on developing. If Switzerland wants to continue actively supporting its exporters in the future, it will find itself increasingly faced with a conflict of objectives. On the one hand, the principle of subsidiarity, which is firmly established in Switzerland, must be upheld. On the other hand, there is a danger that Swiss exporters will suffer a systematic disadvantage compared to their foreign competitors due to the greater support provided in some other countries.

Peter Gisler, CEO at SERV: ‘SERV will have to evolve from an insurer of last resort into a trade facilitator and will thereby help Swiss exporters remain competitive in the future.’ The first step towards this has already been taken with the ECA Pathfinding Project launched by SERV two years ago to give SMEs better access to foreign infrastructure projects. However, further measures for promoting and supporting the Swiss export industry in the long term are also being assessed. These include developing the range of products, such as by adapting working capital insurance or by reactivating and redesigning investment guarantees.

The results of the study are published here.