Small Business Urges Congress to Move on Ex-Im ReauthorizationFebruary 14, 2012
On Tuesday, the National Small Business Association (NSBA) and its international trade arm, the Small Business Exporters Association (SBEA), sent a letter to House leadership urging their prompt action to reauthorize and increase the lending cap on the U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im Bank). Currently facing potential stoppages in financing small-business exporting, more than 70 small-business owners, advocates and exporters are calling on lawmakers to ensure Ex-Im Bank can accommodate and support growing U.S. exports.
“While lawmakers continue to beat the drum for jobs and helping America’s small businesses publicly, in private they have put at risk a program of critical importance to small-business exporters,” stated NSBA President and CEO Todd McCracken. “Hijacking Ex-Im Bank in the near-term does a great disservice to small businesses and the U.S. economy in the long-term”
Ex-Im Bank, a self-sustaining federal agency, provides lending and insurance guarantees to help U.S. exporters compete globally and ensure payment for their goods and services. Unfortunately, Congress failed to enact a long-term reauthorization by Sept. 30, 2011 when its renewable charter expired and has since enacted a short-term extension with no increase in its lending cap.
Ex-Im Bank currently has more business in its pipeline than it can support given the current cap limitations and, unless Congress acts soon, exporters could see their lender of last resort falter as it waits for the new reauthorization.
For Fiscal Year 2011, Ex-Im Bank authorized export financing totaling $32.7 billion, which supported $41 billion in export sales and 290,000 U.S. jobs at over 3,600 companies. Ex-Im Bank also set a record in its support of small business at $6 billion—an increase of more than 20 percent since 2010.
“Not only has Ex-Im Bank supported an estimated $32.7 billion in export sales last year alone, it has returned roughly $3.5 billion to the U.S. government since 2006,” stated NSBA Chair Chris Holman, CEO of Michigan Business Network.com and President of The Greater Lansing Business Monthly. “I can’t understand why we would not go ahead with one of the few programs that actually is profitable to business and the federal government.”
Please click here to view the letter.