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Ex-Im Bank Backs Sale of Cotton Harvesting Equipment to China, Sustaining Jobs in America's Heartland

Transaction Expected To Lead To Significant Follow-on Business

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 20, 2008

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202-565-3200)

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) today approved a $10.2 million loan guarantee to support the export of cotton harvesting equipment and services by CNH America LLC, Benson, Minn., New Holland North America, Grand Island, Neb., and other U.S. suppliers to China's Xinjiang Agricultural Cultivation Group.

CNH said the contracts will benefit more than 1,400 of its employees in Benson, Minn. and Grand Island, Neb., as well as many unspecified employees of CNH supplier companies.

Sub-suppliers include Redball, LLC, Benson, Minn., Super Steel Products Corp., Milwaukee, Wisc., and Consolidated Diesel Co., Whitaker, N.C.

The transaction is the fifth to be done under Ex-Im Bank's framework agreement with China's Ministry of Finance, signed in January 2005. The borrower is the Export-Import Bank of China. Societe Generale, New York, N.Y., is the guaranteed lender. The transaction also carries the sovereign guarantee of China's Ministry of Finance.

The sale represents the first phase of a $110 million multi-purchase plan by China's Ministry of Finance for 450 cotton harvesting machines between 2008 and 2010.

Ex-Im Bank is delighted to support this transaction and any follow-on business that will create and sustain U.S. jobs, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President James H. Lambright.

As we look to expand our business in China, these new contracts represent a strong positive in that direction for our company, said Franco Fusignani, chief executive officer of CNH International.

Xinjiang Agricultural Cultivation Group will use the 40 cotton harvesting machines, spare parts, and transportation, training and related services to harvest the crop in its No. 1 and No. 6 Division farms in northwest China, and sell the product to the marketplace as raw cotton.

The Ex-Im Bank transaction will be co-financed by the Israeli Export Credit Agency, ASHR'A, which will support Beit Hashita Metal Industries Ltd's supply of drums to be installed on the harvesters in China.

Ex-Im Bank is the official export-credit agency of the United States. The independent, self-sustaining federal agency, now in its 74th year, helps create and maintain U.S. jobs by financing 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 2007, Ex-Im Bank authorized $12.6 billion in financing to support an estimated $16 billion of U.S. exports worldwide. For more information, visit www.exim.gov.