Efforts to Reauthorize Ex-Im Bank Fail

March 21, 2012

March 21, 2012

Molly Brogan

Washington, D.C. – Despite broad bipartisan support for reauthorizing the U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im Bank,) the Senate late yesterday failed to approve language which would have done so as part of the JOBS package. The failure to move forward on reauthorizing language, specifically the amendment  offered by Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) narrows even further the window available for passage of Ex-Im reauthorization.

“A critical program that helps countless small- and mid-sized exporters is at risk unless Congress acts, and acts soon,” stated NSBA President and CEO Todd McCracken. “The small-business owners relying on Ex-Im products could be faced with an inability to finance existing and planned export sales.”

Language to reauthorize Ex-Im Bank was offered during Senate debate over the House-passed JOBS Act which would enact a crowdfunding exemption, preempt state blue sky laws, and create an IPO OnRamp, among other items, all of which will make it easier and more affordable for small firms to raise funds as well as go, and remain public. NSBA continues to support the various provisions under the JOBS Act  and urges the Senate and House to move expeditiously on it.

Unfortunately, Ex-Im Bank reauthorization is facing a looming deadline and the Bank currently has more business in its pipeline than it can support given the current cap limitations. U.S. exporters could see their lender of last resort falter as soon as the end of March as it waits for the new reauthorization. In 2011, Ex-Im Bank supported $41 billion in exports and 290,000 jobs, and over the last five years has earned taxpayers $1.9 billion. Furthermore, Ex-Im Bank hit a record $6 billion in support for small firms in FY 2011—an increase of more than 20 percent from FY 2010.

“Life outside the Beltway is still going on – people still need jobs and small businesses still need to create those jobs,” stated NSBA Chair Chris Holman, CEO of Michigan Business Network.com and President of The Greater Lansing Business Monthly. “It is unfortunate that lawmakers chose to hamper the kind of growth Ex-Im Bank supports.”

Please click here  for examples of small-business owners who benefit from Ex-Im Bank’s programs.

Celebrating its 75th Anniversary in 2012, NSBA continues to advocate on behalf of America’s entrepreneurs. A staunchly nonpartisan organization, NSBA reaches more than 150,000 small businesses across the country and is proud to be the nation’s first small-business advocacy organization. For more information, please visit www.nsba.biz.