Business & Lobbying

Manufacturing group leads coalition to urge Congress to reauthorize Ex-Im Bank

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The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) led a coalition of over 200 companies requesting that Congress pass a long-term reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, which is set to expire on Sept. 30.

The last reauthorization of the bank, which facilitates exports from U.S. businesses by guaranteeing loans for foreign buyers, was signed by then-President Obama in 2015.

{mosads}Since then, the bank has experienced major turmoil, and advocates are pushing for a long-term reauthorization to finally stabilize it.

“In an increasingly competitive and uncertain global marketplace, America cannot afford to lose any opportunity to level the playing field and advance our country’s leadership,” the letter reads.

It continues, “That is why without quick action to secure a long-term and robust Ex-Im Bank reauthorization that fixes past quorum issues, thousands of American exporters and tens of thousands of American workers who rely on the Ex-Im Bank will be put at risk—and broader U.S. national interests, too.”

The Senate confirmed Kimberly Reed as Ex-Im Bank president and former Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) and Judith DelZoppo Pryor to the board in May. That move gave the bank the required quorum to approve larger deals for the first time since 2015.

Before the confirmations, only two members were on the board, which was short of the quorum needed to sign off on deals of more than $10 million.

The letter notes that when there was a lack of a board quorum, “the National Association of Manufacturers estimated that manufacturers in America lost $119 billion in output, which translated into 80,000 fewer American manufacturing jobs in 2016 and 2017 alone.”

Other entities that signed on to the letter include the American Petroleum Institute, Business Roundtable, Deere & Company, General Electric, Halliburton, Honeywell, Lockheed Martin, Boeing and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, among others. 

“To remain competitive in the global market, workers and industries throughout America need long-term certainty that the Ex-Im Bank will be able to continue serving as a vital ‘lender of last resort’ when U.S. exporters are unable to obtain financing or related export services from commercial banks,” the letter reads.

Notable opponents of the Ex-Im bank include GOP Sens. James Lankford (Okla.), Mike Lee (Utah), Marco Rubio (Fla.), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Richard Shelby (Ala.) and Pat Toomey (Pa.), all of whom voted against Reed’s confirmation

Seventeen senators in total voted against Reed, and all of them were Republicans other than Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). House Financial Services Committee Chairman Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) and ranking member Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) are both supportive of renewing authorization for the bank.

Tags Ben Sasse Bernie Sanders Export–Import Bank of the United States James Lankford Marco Rubio Maxine Waters Mike Lee Pat Toomey Patrick McHenry Quorum Richard Shelby Spencer Bachus

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