Mayors Letter in Support of Export-Import Bank

Jo-Carolyn Goode | 2/26/2015, 3:29 p.m.
As mayors of cities that count exports as a crucial contributor to our U.S. economy, we urge you to reauthorize ...
U.S. Conference of Mayors President and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson

February 25, 2015

The Honorable Mitch McConnell Majority Leader, U.S. Senate

317 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Harry Reid Minority Leader

U.S. Senate

522 Hart Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable John Boehner, Speaker U.S. House of Representatives

H-232, The Capitol

Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi Minority Leader

U.S. House of Representatives H-204, The Capitol Washington, DC 20515

Dear Leader McConnell, Leader Reid, Speaker Boehner, and Leader Pelosi:

As mayors of cities that count exports as a crucial contributor to our U.S. economy, we urge you to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im Bank) of the United States before its charter expires on June 30, 2015. Without support from the Export-Import Bank, businesses in cities nationwide will face little or no financing alternatives, putting U.S. jobs in jeopardy.

In 2013, Ex-Im Bank provided more than $27.3 billion in financing, enabling $34.7 billion in exports and supporting more than 205,000 jobs nationwide. These jobs come from businesses of all sizes – not just large businesses as opponents have argued.

Small businesses need more certainty and protection to compete in new markets and help create jobs, which explains why Ex-Im Bank has financed more small businesses in the last five years than in the previous 11 years combined. In FY 2013, nearly 90 percent of Ex-Im Bank’s transactions supported American small businesses.

To put things further in perspective, Ex-Im Bank support for small businesses led to more than 46,000 jobs in the state of Florida and more than 134,000 jobs in the state of California alone.

Support from the Ex-Im Bank enables local American businesses to get the financing needed to stay competitive internationally. In an ever-global economy, American businesses need the assurances provided by Ex-Im Bank financing to reach lucrative markets overseas. Furthermore, this financing is needed to compete with global competitors such as China and Germany with export credit agencies many times the size of the U.S. Ex-Im Bank.

Contrary to what critics have argued, these businesses cannot rely on support from the private sector should the Bank’s charter expire. Due to the unique nature of financing provided by the Ex-Im Bank, and the economies often involved in these deals, the private sector is unable or unwilling to assist these businesses.

The Ex-Im Bank assists American jobs at no cost to the taxpayer. In fact, the Ex-Im Bank actually contributed more than $1 billion to the U.S. Treasury Department in 2013 through the fees charged for its services.

During the 82nd Annual Meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors in Dallas this past June where nearly 300 mayors convened, we unanimously adopted a resolution in support for Ex-Im Bank’s Reauthorization.

The nation’s mayors strongly urge

Sincerely,

you to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank before its expiration on June 30, 2015.

Allowing the Ex-Im Bank’s charter to expire only jeopardizes American jobs and businesses in our cities, and puts U.S. exporters at a sharper disadvantage to global competitors.

Kevin Johnson

Mayor of Sacramento

President of The U.S. Conference of Mayors