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Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202) 565-3200

U.S. small businesses from Florida to Tennessee to Minnesota are expanding their sales to sub-Saharan African markets backed by financing from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank). The U.S. companies are exporting a variety of products including construction equipment, textile making machinery and foodstuffs to markets such as Ghana, Mali and Mauritania, using Ex-Im Bank loan guarantees and export credit insurance.

Expanding support for U.S. exports to Sub-Saharan Africa is a top Ex-Im Bank priority, said Ex-Im Bank Chairman John E. Robson. These markets offer significant opportunities for U.S. companies to increase sales and create new jobs while the U.S. equipment helps African countries build vitally needed infrastructure.

Recent Sub-Saharan Africa transactions include:

· A.L. Molesworth, Inc., a small construction equipment reseller in Boca Raton, FL, and several U.S. suppliers are exporting $300,000 of used bulldozers, tractors and trailers to Modern Industrial Complex Works Ltd., Takoradi, Ghana, backed by a $277,312 Ex-Im Bank medium-term insurance policy. The U.S. suppliers are: Terex Americas, Tulsa, OK; Freightliner Corp., Portland, OR; and Great Dane Trailers, Savannah, GA. Modern Industrial Complex will use the equipment to expand its logging business. Allfirst Bank, Baltimore, MD, is the insured lender. The insurance broker is Johnstone Downey Klein, Columbus, OH.

· Southern Textile Exchange, LLC, a small Chattanooga, TN, exporter, and three other U.S. suppliers are selling $551,600 of new and used textile manufacturing equipment to Overseas Knitwear Fabrics Ltd., Accra, Ghana, with the support of a $468,860 Ex-Im Bank medium-term loan guarantee. The U.S. suppliers are Kentucky Derby Hosiery Co., Inc., Hopkinsville, KY; Hoffman International Inc., Piscataway, NJ; and Dell Computer Corp., Round Rock, TX. This transaction is the result of the Africa Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA) under which partially finished socks will be supplied, finished in Ghana and re-exported to the United States under a duty free and quota arrangement. The equipment will enable Overseas Knitwear Fabrics Ltd. to expand into sock manufacturing. PNC Bank National Association, Pittsburgh, PA, is the guaranteed lender

Dom-Ex Inc., Hibbing, MN, a small wholesaler of new and used mining and construction equipment, is exporting $2.9 million of used bulldozers, loaders, road graders and other equipment to Enterprise Thera & Freres, Bamako, Mali, with the help of an Ex-Im Bank $2.7 million medium-term guarantee. Enterprise Thera & Freres will use the equipment to expand operations and bid for larger government contracts. Allfirst Bank, Baltimore, MD, is the guaranteed lender.

· Africa Pilot Program: In the first transaction under Ex-Im Bank's Africa Pilot Program, Edelweiss Inc., Westbury, NY, a small exporter of frozen meats and poultry, has received Ex-Im Bank approval for $23,750 in short-term insurance to support the sale of $25,000 of poultry to ETS Balas, Nouakchott, Mauritania. Under its Africa Pilot Program, Ex-Im Bank offers short-term insurance policies for U.S. exports to markets in certain African countries in which Ex-Im Bank has limited experience. ETS Balas, a new Edelweiss customer, is a wholesale and retail distributor of general foodstuffs and an exporter of fish. The insurance policy will enable Edelweiss to extend more competitive payment terms to ETS Balas.

Ex-Im Bank is an independent U.S. government agency that assists in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to markets around the world, through export credit insurance, loan guarantees, and direct loans. Ex-Im Bank has supported approximately $42 million in U.S. exports to sub-Saharan Africa so far in Fiscal Year 2001. In fiscal year 2000, Ex-Im Bank helped to finance nearly $15.5 billion of U.S. exports worldwide.