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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) approved a $60 million credit guarantee facility to back the purchase by Mexico's government-owned utility, Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE), of equipment and services from a wide range of U.S. companies.

In addition to supporting CFE's annual capital requirements, the sales will help sustain thousands of U.S. jobs at companies large and small. CFE already anticipates purchases for the first half of 2004 will total approximately $50 million from 20 U.S. suppliers. The utility expects to buy test and measurement equipment, turbine components and parts, control systems, fiber-optic cable, and other equipment.

The medium-term guaranteed line of credit from Credit Lyonnais Global Partners, New York, N.Y., covers a one-year period and is a renewal of an existing facility that CFE has had with Ex-Im Bank since 1995. The renewed facility is nearly triple the $20.5 million level of the previous facility.

CFE is mandated by the Mexican government to maximize its use of export credit agency-supported financing for its procurement. The Ex-Im Bank support levels the playing field for U.S. exporters, since several foreign competitors backed by their export credit agencies are actively seeking to address CFE's procurement requirements.

Mexico is one of Ex-Im Bank's biggest markets with a portfolio nearing $6 billion. In fiscal year 2003, Ex-Im Bank authorized $1.6 billion in financing to support U.S. exports to Mexico.

Ex-Im Bank this year marks its 70th year of helping finance the sale of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets throughout the world, by providing loan guarantees, export credit insurance, and direct loans. In fiscal year 2003, Ex-Im Bank, an independent federal agency, authorized financing to support $14.3 billion of U.S. exports worldwide. For more information on Ex-Im Bank visit //www.exim.gov.