Almost six months after authorization for the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank expired, a bipartisan group of congressional leaders has broken the stalemate and paved a path forward. With 218 signatures, leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives have advanced legislation bringing reauthorization of Ex-Im to the House Floor, where it is expected to be given a vote in October.
The California Chamber of Commerce is asking the state’s representatives to support reauthorizing the U.S. Export-Import Bank, which expired on June 30.
In a letter to the California congressional delegation, CalChamber explains that failure to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank will seriously disadvantage U.S. companies—small and large—in foreign markets, potentially resulting in the loss of thousands of U.S. jobs. Failure to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank would put at risk the more than 150,000 U.S. jobs at 3,000 companies that depend on Ex-Im to compete in global markets.
Ex-Im has a proven record of success, and turns a profit for the American taxpayer. Since 1990, Ex-Im has refunded $7 billion to the U.S. Treasury above all costs and loss reserves, including $674.7 billion in the2014 fiscal year alone.
The potential impact of a lack of financing for exports for both small and large businesses will be damaging to the economic recovery of both California and the United States. Over the last five years, Ex-Im assisted 800 businesses from California, the vast majority beingsmall businesses.
In fact, small businesses account for approximately 89% of Ex-Im’s transactions. These small business transaction figures are in addition to the tens of thousands of small and medium-sized businesses that supply goods and services to large exporters. In the 2014 fiscal year, Ex-Im provided more than $5 billion in financing and insurance for U.S. small businesses.
California is one of the top economies in the world with a gross state product exceeding $2 trillion. In 2014, California exported to approximately 229 foreign markets. Trade offers the opportunity to expand the role of California’s exports.
The CalChamber is strongly urging the California congressional delegation to consider legislation to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank of the United States as expeditiously as possible. The CalChamber also is asking that businesses send a letter to their congressional representative via our grassroots system.
Staff Contact: Susanne T. Stirling