We are deeply concerned that Congress has not passed a long-term reauthorization of the U.S. Export-Import Bank. We strongly urge passage of a full four-year reauthorization before the current authorization expires December 16.
The bank serves a critical function for U.S. job creation and economic growth by supporting the financing of American exporters. In fiscal year 2011, the bank reports that it supported more than $40 billion in U.S. exports, helping to create or sustain an estimated 290,000 direct and indirect jobs at over 3,600 U.S. small and large companies – while earning a $700 million return on taxpayer investment. More than 80 percent of the bank’s transactions in fiscal year 2011 supported U.S. small businesses. It’s particularly important to the aerospace industry, which contributes the largest positive trade balance of any manufacturing sector at $51 billion in 2010.
U.S. companies face stiff competition from overseas competitors who have unfettered access to similar export credit programs. Denial of Export-Import Bank support to U.S. manufacturers is tantamount to unilateral disarmament in the marketplace. Because the bank’s operations are crucial to the ability of U.S. companies – large and small – to compete on a level playing field, Congress should reauthorize the Export-Import Bank before they close out this year’s legislative session.