Chairman Reed Highlights How Credit Unions Can Partner with EXIM to Support Small Businesses During Remarks to CUNA Councils

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WASHINGTON - Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) President and Chairman Kimberly A. Reed today delivered prerecorded remarks to approximately 50 members of CUNA Councils, a professional organization for credit union leaders, underscoring opportunities to provide their small-business members with export financing tools that allow them to better compete in the global marketplace.

During the webinar, Chairman Reed highlighted how credit union small-business members can use EXIM's financing tools and resources to increase their international sales, showcase their "Made in the USA" products, and support American jobs. The webinar, which is part of a new EXIM outreach effort with credit unions, followed the signing of a memorandum of understanding between EXIM and the National Credit Union Administration.

"Credit unions are a key part of our nation's economy and EXIM - an 86-year-old federal agency with the mission of supporting U.S. jobs by facilitating exports - is excited to have this new partnership," said Chairman Kimberly Reed. "By collaborating with great associations like CUNA Councils, EXIM now can reach even more U.S. small businesses and workers to underscore export financing tools available to help them export and succeed in the competitive global marketplace."

Also participating in the webinar were:

  • Lacinda Athen, CUNA Councils Director of Member Engagement and Communications.
  • Steve Freshour, EXIM Vice President of Business Credit.
  • Jeffrey Clare, EXIM Business Development Specialist.

The speakers highlighted opportunities for credit unions to further support their small-business members with export financing. By partnering with EXIM, small-business exporters can mitigate the risk of nonpayment on international sales by using tools such as EXIM's working capital loan guarantees, which are exempt from the credit union member business cap of 12.25 percent. They also discussed EXIM's coronavirus response measures for helping reopen the economy.

"Being the premier professional society for credit union executives, we are pleased to provide this education on new ways our member institutions can support their local business community," said Athen of CUNA Councils. "Our Lending Council and CEO Council members were encouraged to attend to ensure they have the full set of tools to provide financing during this critical time." 

Federally insured credit unions are an important part of the U.S. financial structure, with more than 5,000 institutions and a membership of 120.4 million during the fourth quarter of 2019. Total assets in federally insured credit unions reached $1.57 trillion at the same time, with total outstanding loans of $64 billion.

As part of EXIM's recent reauthorization, Congress directed the agency to further build on its robust support of small businesses, and partnership with credit unions is an important step toward that goal. CUNA Councils is a professional organization, affiliated with the Credit Union National Association, commonly known as CUNA, which is a national trade association for both state and federally chartered credit unions.


EXIM is an independent federal agency that promotes and supports American jobs by providing competitive and necessary export credit to support sales of U.S. goods and services to international buyers. A robust EXIM can level the global playing field for U.S. exporters when they compete against foreign companies that receive support from their governments. EXIM also contributes to U.S. economic growth by helping to create and sustain hundreds of thousands of jobs in exporting businesses and their supply chains across the United States. In recent years, approximately 90 percent of the total number of the agency's authorizations has directly supported small businesses. Since 1992, EXIM has generated more than $9 billion for the U.S. Treasury for repayment of U.S. debt. 

For more information about EXIM, please visit