Washington, D.C. – More than two months after the charter of the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank expired, U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly once again urged Congress to work together to reauthorize the Bank. The Ex-Im Bank serves as the official export credit agency of the United States and helps facilitate the export of American goods and services to international markets. Congress failed to act to reauthorize the Bank’s charter by June 30, 2015, and as a result, the Bank has not been allowed to provide American businesses with any new financing. A recently released ticker provides real-time estimates on the economic impact since the Ex-Im charter expired and shows that the United States has potentially lost out on more than $8 billion export dollars, more than $127 million in U.S. Treasury returns, and more than 46,000 American jobs since July 1st.
Donnelly, who serves on the Senate Banking Committee, said, “Creating jobs here at home and boosting exports in a fiscally responsible way is common sense, and we should be supporting small businesses by expanding export opportunities for them to sell their products overseas. The Export-Import Bank is an important tool that helps Hoosier and American companies compete in the global economy by doing just that. Congress’ failure to renew the Export-Import Bank is hurting small businesses and our economy, because instead of companies investing in American products and exports, they are beginning to turn to foreign countries for financing. It’s past time for Congress to act, and I urge my colleagues to come together and reauthorize the Export-Import Bank.”
American businesses have already felt the repercussions of Congress’ failure to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank. General Electric Co. announced yesterday that it plans to add 400 jobs in France instead of in the United States because Congress didn’t reauthorize the Bank. GE needed export financing to bid on billions of dollars worth of work to make power turbines and generators for various foreign countries. Without the financing of the Ex-Im Bank available, GE instead turned to the bank’s equivalent in France to obtain a line of credit for the global power projects and costing new American jobs in the process.
Donnelly has continuously advocated for the reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank. In July 2015, he helped the Senate pass a bipartisan amendment that would reform and reauthorize the Export-Import Bank’s charter through September 2019. The amendment is identical to the bipartisan bill Donnelly helped introduce earlier this year.
Since 1992, the Export-Import Bank has returned more than $7 billion in profits to the Treasury Department, with $675 million of that coming in fiscal year 2014. The Export-Import Bank approved $20.5 billion in authorizations in fiscal year 2014 alone, which supported an estimated $27.5 billion of U.S. exports and more than 164,000 U.S. jobs. According to the Export-Import Bank, since 2007, the Bank has directly helped approximately 140 Hoosier companies export more than $4 billion in goods and services overseas. During its 80-plus year existence, the Export-Import Bank has garnered support from every President during that span and previously been repeatedly renewed with bipartisan support by Congress.
Donnelly is a longtime supporter of the Export-Import Bank. Last year, Donnelly wrote an op-ed in The Hill about the importance of the Export-Import Bank to the economy, citing its impact on Indiana businesses, and he co-sponsored bipartisan legislation that would have reauthorized the Export-Import Bank for five years. That bill was not considered by the Senate, and instead Congress passed a short-term reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank through June 30, 2015.