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EX-IM BANK AND MINORITY BUSINESS GROUP AGREE TO COOPERATE TO SUPPORT INCREASED EXPORTS BY MINORITY U.S. SUPPLIERS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 24, 2000

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202) 565-3200

The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today to cooperate in supporting increased exports by more than 15,000 U.S. minority-owned businesses. The MOU was signed at Ex-Im Bank headquarters by Ex-Im Bank Chairman James A. Harmon and NMSDC President Harriet R. Michel

NMSDC, a leading U.S. business membership organization headquartered in New York, NY, provides a direct link between corporate America and minority-owned businesses to increase procurement and business opportunities for minority firms of all sizes. The NMSDC network includes 39 regional councils around the country, which certify and match the group's 3,500 corporate members that want to buy goods and services with more than 15,000 minority-owned suppliers.

Supporting growth in U.S. minority business exports is a top Ex-Im Bank priority, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman James A. Harmon. Through this partnership, we can expand our outreach efforts to tap the enormous potential of the minority business sector to strengthen the United States' export effort.

Under the new agreement, Ex-Im Bank will participate in NMSDC workshops around the country to educate U.S. companies about Ex-Im Bank's export financing programs. NMSDC will promote Ex-Im Bank programs to its network of companies and provide a link to Ex-Im Bank's web site on its web site. For more information on the program, contact Tamara Maxwell at 202-565-3375 or tammy.maxwell@exim.gov.

Ex-Im Bank is an independent U.S. government agency that assists in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to developing markets around the world, through export credit insurance, working capital loan guarantees, loan guarantees, and direct loans. During fiscal year 1999, Ex-Im Bank supported nearly $17 billion in U.S. exports worldwide. Ex-Im Bank itself has awarded 30.2% of its own procurement budget available for competition to small disadvantaged businesses and minority business enterprises so far this fiscal year, far exceeding the government-wide goal of 5% set by the Small Business Administration.