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How to get CSDG certified

03 August, 2022Mutahara Gofur

Demand guarantees and standby letters of credit are an important area of trade finance. We answer five questions that people regularly ask about Certificate for Specialists in Demand Guarantees (CSDG) – from registering to progressing your career. 

What is the CSDG qualification?

Ship in sunsetCSDG helps professionals working with demand guarantees develop their understanding of: 

  • demand guarantees and standby letters of credit
  • industry rules
  • challenges relating to demand guarantees and standby credits.

It’s a globally recognised standard of competence for trade finance professionals, which is:

  • endorsed by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
  • supported by the Bankers Association for Finance and Trade (BAFT).

As it’s an online course, CSDG allows you the flexibility to study anywhere you want at a time that best suits you. This lets you fit your learning around your work and other commitments.

What are demand guarantees?

Demand guarantees and standby letters of credit are tools that help an institution support its corporate customers. When two parties enter into an agreement, one party may want a guarantee that the other will:

  • perform its obligations
  • pay any amount that may be due under the terms of the agreement.

Rather than require a cash deposit to cover the risk of nonperformance or nonpayment, the parties may agree to use a demand guarantee or standby letter of credit.

One party, known as ‘the applicant’, instructs its bank to issue a demand guarantee or standby letter of credit in favour of the other party, known as ‘the beneficiary’.  

The demand guarantee or standby letter of credit covers either the risk of nonperformance or the risk of nonpayment by the applicant. 

How do I register for CSDG?

You can register for CSDG using our online registration system. You’ll have a year from registering to complete the course and sit your exam. 

Your assessment will be a three-hour and 15-minute exam and will consist of two sections: 

  • multiple-choice questions
  • practical exercises.

You can book your exam at any designated test centre around the world.

What are the benefits of doing CSDG?

When you’ve successfully completed the exam, you can add the professional designation CSDG after your name and you’ll be added to the international CSDG registry.

Completing CSDG will also help you develop your knowledge and perform better in your role. You will learn more about:

  • the uses and the lifecycle of demand guarantees and standby letters of credit
  • the risks mitigated by demand guarantees and standby letters of credit
  • the ICC rules
  • the impact of external factors on ICC rules

Esan Olumuyiwa completed CSDG and achieved the Diploma for Qualified Trade Finance Specialists (QTFS) in 2020.

“With each qualification,” he says, “I developed an ability to think through trade transactions intelligently. That meant I could offer superior solutions to trade-related problems. This helped me perform better in my job.” 

How do I continue my professional development after CSDG?

To ensure your name stays on the international CSDG registry, you’ll need to recertify every three years either by:  

  • carrying out continuous professional development (CPD) throughout the recertification period, or
  • retaking and passing the full CSDG exam at the end of the three-year period.

If you prefer to complete your CPD by studying other LIBF’s trade finance qualifications, you may consider working towards the Diploma for Qualified Trade Finance Specialists (QTFS).  

QTFS will set you apart from your peers. If you complete at least three qualifications in trade and transaction banking, you’ll be awarded QTFS at no extra cost.

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More about QTFS