HSBC Canada is allocating an additional $1 billion in 2014 to finance small and medium-sized Canadian enterprises that are going after global markets.

The new funding stream comes on top of $1 billion committed last summer to export-related businesses.

The British-based bank says it believes exports will be a key driver in the Canadian economy in 2014 because Canada is poised to meet the growing demand for commodities from emerging markets, especially petro products, industrial and transportation equipment.

HSBC Canada senior vice-president Nigel Davis  said the bank is looking for SMEs with turnover ranging from $3 million turnover to $250 million annually that are trading or interested in trading internationally.

There has been a good response to news of the first $1 billion in funding for exporting SMEs, he said in an interview with CBC’s The Lang & O’Leary Exchange.

“It enables us to demonstrate our expertise in the marketplace and that HSBC can trade internationally, help businesses trade internationally, because we’ve got experts in 60 per cent of countries around the world, which covers 90 per cent of the trade flow around the world,” he said.

“We’ve probably got somebody on the other end of the transaction that can help our clients or prospective clients on the spot.”

Davis said HSBC focuses on opening doors in emerging market because of the huge potential in these countries over the next 25 years.

“HSBC did a study that looked at the world in 2050 and the top 30 trading economies in the year 2050 – of those top 30, 19 of them are what we know as emerging markets. HSBC believes in investing and supporting people into emerging markets,” he said.

Canada is among the world’s top exporting nations, but it will take a deliberate focus on exports for Canada to remain among the top 10, he added.

“I think if you don’t understand overseas markets, it’s very difficult to penetrate them. How on Earth would you get your money if you’re selling overseas? We can help with that,” he said.

The U.S. branch of HSBC also has a program devoted to exporting companies, committing $2 billion US by the end of 2014.

 “Statistics show us that companies that trade internationally grow faster anyways. We benefit when our clients do well,” Davis said.