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Ex-Im Bank Helps U.S. Railway Equipment Makers Succeed in the Global Marketplace

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 23, 2009

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202-565-3200)

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. makers of locomotives, railway equipment and services are rolling into several foreign markets despite the current economic crisis, backed by loans, loan guarantees and insurance from Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

We can help U.S. railway manufacturers export despite tightened liquidity with a variety of financing alternatives from short-term to long-term, said John A. McAdams, Ex-Im Bank chief operating officer and senior vice president, Export Finance. This financing helps maintain the flow of U.S. exports to international buyers and in the process supports U.S. jobs in this important industrial sector.

L. B. Foster Company, Pittsburgh, Penn., is exporting railroad track equipment to Peru with the help of a $12 million Ex-Im Bank guarantee of a loan by PNC Bank National Association, also headquartered in Pittsburgh.

The fact that this transaction is being supported by Ex-Im Bank is immensely helpful to us, said Lia Turner, L. B. Foster manager, International District. This makes us competitive on financing with Chinese and European manufacturers.

Ferrocarril Transandino, S.A., Peru (Ferrocarril), a private rail concession operator, is using the financing to buy rail tracks, joint bars, track bolts and rail anchors from L. B. Foster to renovate its track network. The transaction is part of a $25 million project to upgrade Ferrocarril's rail system.

Ex-Im Bank also approved an $86.5 million long-term loan to support the sale by GE Transportation, Erie, Penn., of 38 AC44i diesel-electric locomotives to MRS Logistica in Brazil. The privately-owned railway company, one of Brazil's largest, is using the exports to expand and modernize its locomotive fleet, buying the first alternating current locomotives in Brazil. It is the largest financing done by Ex-Im Bank for a Brazilian railroad. GE Capital Markets Services Inc. is acting as financial advisor on the transaction.

MRS Logistica operates a 1,674-kilometer rail network linking the Brazilian states of Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo. The railroad operates 576 locomotives and 14,117 rail cars to transport such commodities as iron ore, steel, cement, coal/coke and agricultural products.

In another successful railway export case, Nucor Corporation, Charlotte, N.C.,is selling steel plate manufactured in its Tuscaloosa, Ala., facility to a Mexican railcar manufacturer with the help of an Ex-Im Bank Financial Institutional Buyer Credit policy.

The policy insures a $20 million revolving line of credit from Hencorp Becstone Capital LLC, Miami, Fla., to Mexican buyer Gunderson-Gimsa, S de R.L. de C.V.

Additional U.S. suppliers across the country will participate in the transaction by providing steel wheels, coupling, braking systems and related materials and parts to Gunderson-Gimsa.

Ex-Im Bank has enhanced several of its trade finance products to help counter the tightening of credit and the lack of liquidity in the export marketplace. Among the changes is expanded access to the Bank's working capital loan guarantees. These loan guarantees are now available for indirect exporters, which are U.S. companies that provide goods and services destined for export by other U.S. companies.

Ex-Im Bank is the official export-credit agency of the United States. The independent, self-sustaining federal agency, now in its 75th 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.