Congressman Earl L. “Buddy” Carter (Ga-01) voted in support of H.R. 597 today to implement important reforms and reauthorize the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank.
“Failure to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank puts thousands of jobs in the First District, and across the nation, in jeopardy and puts Georgian and American companies at a dangerous disadvantage against our global competitors,” Carter said. “In the First District, the Ex-Im Bank facilitates exports for 17 companies resulting in $501 million in exports and 3,208 jobs. With the recent expiration of the Ex-Im Bank, many of these companies have suffered the loss of millions of dollars in new business growth and market access. I supported reauthorization today because I refuse to sit idly as these jobs, and many others, are lost due to Washington’s failure to act.”
While Carter has pushed for additional reforms, the legislation passed today provides several critical reforms including:
“I have pushed for reforms to the Bank to ensure taxpayers are protected while allowing the Bank to do its important work,” Carter said. “While I would like to see additional reforms, the Bank has been expired for too long and irreparable damage has been caused on American jobs and American job creators. Thousands of jobs have already been lost and thousands more are being put in jeopardy while business contracts are going to our foreign competitors each day Congress fails to act. The legislation passed in the House today is essential to protecting these jobs and letting the world know America is open for business.”
- Limiting taxpayer exposure by lowering the Bank’s borrowing cap for the first time and requiring higher loan reserves to protect taxpayer funds;
- Putting a greater focus on small businesses by increasing the amount of Bank lending to small businesses from 20% of all Bank activity to 25%;
- Combating fraud and ethical misconduct by creating a non-political Chief Ethics Officer to oversee ethics practices of Bank employees;
- Strengthening risk management and transparency by creating a Chief Risk Officer and a Risk Management Committee to oversee the Bank’s risk exposure and requiring the Inspector General to audit the Bank’s risk management procedures regularly;
- Requiring the President to pursue a global end to export credit financing by submitting a strategy to end government-support subsidies internationally.
The Ex-Im Bank operates under a renewable general statutory charter which Congress failed to renew before it expired on July 1, 2015. As a result, the Bank's statutory authorities have expired putting jobs across the nation at-risk.
As the official export credit agency of the U.S. government, companies pay fees for the insurance they purchase allowing the Bank to return money to the U.S. Treasury. Over the last six years, the Ex-Im Bank has returned $2.7 billion to the treasury and supported 1.3 million jobs in the United States.
Additionally, every industrialized country in the world has an equivalent to the Ex-Im Bank. Eliminating ours will not level the playing field. Instead, it will put American companies at a disadvantage with their international competitors as already seen in the First District of Georgia.