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Ex-Im Bank Chairman Lays Out Vision for Strengthening America's Economy Through Exports

Chairman Hochberg discusses how Ex-Im Bank can help small businesses grow sales and profits-and how a robust export market can fuel job creation in New York and across the country

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 29, 2010

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

MEDIA CONTACTS: Ex-Im Bank: Maura Policelli (202) 565-3200 - Partnership for New York City: Andrew Sullivan (212) 493-7488

New York City - At an event hosted by the Partnership for New York City, Fred P. Hochberg, chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, laid out a clear vision for the role that exports of American-made products and services can play in strengthening the economy and creating jobs. Over 150 people attended today's event at the Westin Hotel including representatives from economic development agencies and a cross section of small- and mid-sized businesses from New York looking to expand their export footprint.

Jobs supported by exports are the most durable in our economy today, Hochberg said. And if we are going to build a firm foundation for future economic prosperity - and get more people back to work - we must ensure that more American businesses are successfully selling their products to more customers in more countries.

As part of its new Global Access for Small Business initiative to help companies better access export markets, Ex-Im Bank has been partnering with local organizations, like the Partnership for New York City, across the country to hold seminars and workshops.

With $85 billion in exports each year, the New York metropolitan region leads the country in export activity, said Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City. We intend to work with the Export-Import Bank to achieve the President's goal of doubling U.S. exports, which will also mean a dramatic increase in the half a million regional jobs that are currently supported by New York's export activity.

In addition to the Partnership, Daniel R. Tishman, Chairman and CEO of Tishman Construction, Vice Chairman of AECOM and a member of the Export-Import Bank of the United States Advisory Committee , helped organize the event. I've seen first hand that in order to continue to grow, businesses must look beyond our borders and be willing to expand, he commented. In order to do that, they need to be able to access capital in a way that many smaller businesses often aren't able to. The Ex-Im Bank can provide the resources necessary to help small businesses grow and create jobs.

Today's forum allowed interested businesses to learn more about the innovative financial products and services Ex-Im has developed to give small- and mid-sized businesses the peace of mind and security to sell overseas.

The Bank's new customer focus has already been showing results.
In New York City, for Fiscal Year 2010, Ex-Im Bank supported exports valued at nearly $900 million-40 percent of that was financing for small businesses.

Key products and services included in Ex-Im's new Small Business Global Access initiative are:

  • Supply Chain Guarantee: increases liquidity for small-business suppliers of goods and services to U.S. exporters.
  • Reinsurance: helps U.S. small-businesses obtain private-sector insurance to cover risks of nonpayment of foreign receivables. Participating private-sector insurers can get reinsurance from Ex-Im Bank.
  • Solar Express: provides streamlined financing for U.S. exporters of solar-energy equipment for small solar-energy projects
  • Express Insurance: Provides a five-day turnaround with a streamlined application great for first-time customers. Launch expected January 2011.
  • Eligibility: Allows more of a company's products and services to be included in an Ex-Im working capital or trade credit insurance transaction
  • Transaction Time: Ex-Im reduced turnaround time from FY'09 to FY'10 by about a third. For FY 2011, Ex-Im's Global Access goal is small business applications completed in an average time period of 30 days.
  • Web Portal: A new Global Access website designed to help small businesses learn about export finance opportunities and Ex-Im products and services. Videos and stories about the success of other exporters are included. Learn more at www.exim.gov/smallbusiness .
  • Forums & Webinars : A series of Global Access forums and webinars to assist exporters understand how the agency's various financial tools can help increase sales, minimize risk, and improve cash flow. These workshops are free.

Nationally, the Bank posted its second consecutive record breaking year, including preliminary figures of $24.5 billion in export financing, which supported $34.4 billion worth of American exports and 227,000 American jobs at more than 3,300 U.S. companies. Of these authorizations, more than $5 billion was for small businesses- another record for the Bank.

During his presentation, Chairman Hochberg explained that there is enormous global demand for the products and services American businesses produce, particularly in emerging markets that are making large infrastructure investments. However, too few American companies are taking advantage of these important sales markets.

Today, nearly 95 percent of consumers live outside of our nation's borders. Yet, only one percent of American companies are selling to them.

Most economists agree that exports of American-made products represent one of the most important components for future economic stability- and one of the most immediate areas for potential GDP growth. Every $1 billion of export sales supports 7,400 American jobs.

One participant was Morty Fazal, president and CEO of Global Export Marketing, a general line grocery merchant wholesaler headquartered in New York City

Mr. Fazal has been an Ex-Im customer since 2005 - using both working capital and insurance products. According to Mr. Fazal, In the time we have been using a working capital guarantee from Ex-Im Bank, we have been able to grow our business from $30 million to about $60 million in the last five years. Going forward, we are looking at emerging markets in Africa, which can be volatile. Using Ex-Im Bank's political risk policy, we are confident in growing our business in these regions by at least $2 million in the next couple of years.

Another company represented at the event was Argosy International Inc. Founded in 1988 it is one of the leading suppliers of composite materials, specialty chemicals, technology, equipment, products and service solutions to aerospace manufacturers, airlines and maintenance shops worldwide. Argosy is the market leader in the Asia-Pacific region thanks to Ex-Im Bank. We started with Ex-Im Bank in October 2005 with annual sales about $11 million in Asia-Pacific. Since that time, we have tripled our sales to $35 million in 2010 with the help of the insured receivables from Ex-Im Bank, said Louis Maresca, President and COO.

To learn more about Ex-Im Bank financing products, visit the web site at www.exim.gov, or call (212) 809-2652 to reach Tom Cummings and his staff in the Bank's Regional Office in New York City.

Ex-Im Bank, an independent, self-sustaining federal agency, helps create and maintain U.S. jobs by filling gaps in export financing and strengthening U.S. export competitiveness. The Bank provides a variety of financing products, including working capital guarantees to help small and medium-sized U.S. businesses, export-credit insurance to protect against nonpayment by foreign buyers, and loan guarantees and direct loans to assist foreign buyers of U.S. goods and services.

The Partnership for New York City's mission is to engage the business community in efforts to advance the economy of New York City and maintain the city's position as the center of world commerce, finance and innovation. Through the New York City Investment Fund, the Partnership contributes directly to projects that create jobs, improve economically distressed communities and stimulate new business creation. Partnership companies account for nearly 7 million American jobs and contribute over $740 billion to the national GDP.