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Update for American Manufacturers
Good news for American manufacturers today, as the House voted overwhelmingly to pass a bill reauthorizing the Export-Import Bank, whose charter was scheduled to expire at the end of the month. The bill, which was previously delayed because of Republican objections that we should not be helping U.S. companies get the financing they need to sell goods overseas, now moves to the Senate and is likely to pass there and be signed into law by President Obama soon.
Failure to pass this bill would have been disastrous, as the Export-Import Bank supports 290,000 jobs at 3,600 American companies through loan guarantees, direct loans and credit insurance. We simply cannot afford to put those jobs at risk. And we cannot give up one of our key tools to help American companies export when other countries are providing their companies with much more support—Brazil and China offer their companies ten times as much export financing as the U.S. does, according to one report.
From the Huffington Post:
The bank, founded in 1934, has seen its charter renewed two dozen times without controversy or fanfare, but things were different in this highly political year. Reauthorization efforts stalled in the Senate in March over a partisan squabble, and faced an uncertain future in the House as Republicans were pressured by business allies who say the bank is crucial to export sales financing, and influential conservative organizations who argue it distorts markets and picks winners and losers…
Ex-Im Bank chairman and president Fred P. Hochberg said the bill passed by the House "will allow the bank to continue supporting U.S. jobs through exports at no cost to the taxpayers." He said reauthorization was key to President Barack Obama's goal of doubling exports over a five-year period.
The bank provides export financing support for about 2 percent of U.S. exports, well below the financial backing offered by other countries. China's export promotion agencies provide almost 10 times the financing of the U.S. bank.
Democrats raised this point in chiding Republicans for their indecision on the bank. While "House Republicans have been agonizing about acting, export powerhouses like China have been dramatically increasing their export financing programs," said Rep. Sander Levin of Michigan. Levin is the top Democrat on the Ways and Means Committee, which handles trade issues.”
Read the full article at Huffington Post