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08.01.19

IFPTE Asks Senators to Support Export-Import Bank Reauthorization

The 10 year bipartisan reauthorization would support well-paying manufacturing jobs by encouraging exports

August 1, 2019

Dear Senator:

As the executive officers of the International Federation of Professional & Technical Engineers (IFPTE), representing upwards of 90,000 workers, we ask to vote to pass the bipartisan Export Import Reauthorization Act of 2019, S.2293, sponsored by Senators Kevin Cramer (R-ND) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ). This bipartisan legislation supports American jobs in strategic industries and sectors of the U.S. economy, helps the U.S. economy compete with high export nations, and takes reasonable steps to maintain the Export-Import Bankís (EXIM) operations over the next ten years.

EXIM is a critical tool that that promotes U.S. manufacturing exports, from the primary exporter down through the domestic supply chain and requires at least 85% domestic context for full financing support. Among the U.S. workers that have benefited from EXIM are IFPTE members working at Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems, and Triumph Composite Systems. EXIMís financing for commercial airplane exports not only supports high-paying jobs and strategic sectors of the economy but also helps reduce our trade deficit, and provides financing for diverse industries, including small- and medium-sized business, consumable and durable goods exporters, and services exporters. Additionally, EXIM returns money to the U.S. Treasury.

Emerging national economies have aggressively expanded their export financing agencies with Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD) nations continuing their export credit support, making it critically important for Congress to respond by reauthorizing EXIM before its current authorization expires at the end of September. Chinaís two export credit agencies totaled $39 billion in new medium- to long- term export credits in 2018, an amount greater than the next three countriesí (Italy, German, and South Korea) combined authorizations. By comparison, EXIM committed just $300 million in medium- to long-term export credits for 2018 with all financial authorizations for the year totaling $3.3 billion. EXIMís financial authorizations have ranked near the bottom of OECD nations and emerging national economies over the last three years due to EXIM lacking a quorum for its Board from mid-2015 to May 2019, leaving it unable to approve transactions exceeding $10 million during that time.

This legislation includes straightforward measures to reform EXIMís quorum rules so that EXIMís ability to support American exports and jobs cannot be limited by political gridlock. The bill creates a process to seat the U.S. Trade Representative, the Commerce Secretary, and the Treasury Secretary on EXIMís board if a quorum cannot be reached for 90 days. In 2014, the last full year EXIM had a quorum and was fully operations, EXIM supported for over $27.5 billion in exports and 164,000 jobs in the U.S. In 2018, EXIMís limited operations supported an estimated 33,000 jobs. The three year backlog of transactions in the EXIM pipeline totals $40 billion and is estimated by EXIM to support 240,000 jobs. Along with the reforms to the quorum rules, the ten-year reauthorization in this bill and the gradual increase in EXIMís exposure cap from $135 billion to $175 billion will create stability and room for EXIMís financing ability to grow its portfolio of projects, support U.S. exports, and drive economic growth.

For these reasons, we urge you to support the bipartisan Export Import Reauthorization Act of 2019. Thank you for your consideration. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact either of us or IFPTE legislative representative Faraz Khan at (202) 239-4880.

Sincerely,

Paul Shearon
President

Matthew Biggs
Secretary-Treasurer/Legislative Director

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RELATED:
6/27/2019 - IFPTE Letter to House Financial Services Committee Opposing Bill That Would Worse Trade Deficit with China

IFPTE's Letter to the Senate to Support Export-Import Bank Reauthorization

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