Washington DC – The National Foreign Trade Council strongly applauds Senate action on passing S.1372, legislation that would reauthorize the Export-Import Bank for five years. It also supports the Senate passage of another short-term extension of the Ex-Im Banks’ charter through April 30 to enable final completion of the legislative process.
“Last week’s Senate action reflects a dedication to U.S. exports and U.S. jobs,” said Bill Reinsch, President of the National Foreign Trade Council. “It’s now up to the House to act if we want to remain competitive in the global marketplace. The competitiveness of U.S. business in some foreign markets is at stake. While we support the short-term extension, the House must do its job and complete consideration of its bill to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank.”
Ex-Im serves as the “lender of last resort” for U.S. exporters when commercial bank financing is not available for export sales and the U.S. exporter is confronted with foreign competitors which have financing available from their government. Currently, some 70 governments around the world have export credit agencies (ECAs) like Ex-Im, providing about $500 billion a year in government-backed financing.
“This legislation is critical to both large and small exporters and their workers,” said Reinsch.
An earlier NFTC listing shows how over 35,000 small and medium-sized companies are “invisible” exporters and major beneficiaries of Ex-Im Bank as suppliers of goods and services to large exporters, demonstrating the vital importance of Ex-Im Bank to small businesses. While the “exporter of record” on many projects supported by Ex-Im Bank may be a large company, the report indicates that thousands of small and medium-sized companies are necessary to provide services or manufactured parts to assemble and build products for export by larger companies.
“Ex-Im’s basic operating principle is to support U.S. jobs by supporting exports of U.S. goods and services through transactions that would not go forward without Ex-Im financing,” said Reinsch. “In this time of economic contraction, the role of Ex-Im becomes ever more important to strengthening the U.S. economy and global leadership. We urge the House to agree this week to the Senate’s one-month charter extension and urge Congress to take every step necessary to enact a multi-year reauthorization of Ex-Im Bank before April 30th when the latest short-term extension expires.”