EXIM Chairman Kimberly Reed and USDA Under Secretary Ted McKinney Sign EXIM-USDA Memorandum of Understanding to Increase U.S. Agricultural Commodity Exports and Support of America's Farmers, Ranchers, and Agribusiness Supply Chains
WASHINGTON - The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced a three-year collaborative effort to promote the export of U.S. agricultural commodities. The initiative will facilitate engagement between EXIM and USDA to identify opportunities to increase the export of U.S. agricultural commodities, as well as the development of an educational program to increase awareness of export opportunities among small agribusinesses and cooperatives.
EXIM President and Chairman Kimberly A. Reed and USDA Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs Ted McKinney signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) at EXIM's headquarters in Washington, D.C. on August 31, 2020, with the intent to raise awareness of products and services offered by both EXIM and USDA. The signing ceremony was prominently featured today as part of the largest-ever EXIM Annual Conference, which had the theme of "Keeping America Strong: Empowering U.S. Businesses and Workers to Compete Globally."
Chairman Reed and Under Secretary McKinney at the MOU Signing Ceremony at EXIM Headquarters in Washington, D.C. on August 31, 2020
"Given my extensive background in food and agriculture, I have made sure that supporting U.S. agricultural and rural business exports are priorities at EXIM. We look forward to closer collaboration with USDA, and I thank USDA Secretary Perdue and Under Secretary McKinney for their leadership," said Chairman Reed. "America's farmers, ranchers, and agribusiness supply chains have faced stiff competition abroad and felt the impact of both COVID-19 and China's unfair trade practices. I am committed to supporting U.S. jobs, growth, and exports within this vital American industry."
"We all know, but oftentimes forget, that food is the sustenance of life," said Under Secretary McKinney. "This MOU is bringing EXIM and USDA together to help make sure that food is transported safely and effectively so that people eat, at a time when many people do not eat well. With USDA's outreach through our Foreign Agricultural Service, and EXIM's resources, this MOU is a match made in heaven."
In addition to the EXIM-USDA signing ceremony, the 2020 EXIM Annual Conference included a panel entitled "Agricultural Goods - Growing Exports with EXIM Support" that featured Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black, who served as a 2019-2020 EXIM Advisory Committee Member, and North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture Douglas Goehring, who served as a 2019-2020 EXIM Sub-Saharan Africa Advisory Committee Member. Earlier this week, Linda Upmeyer, the first woman in Iowa history to be elected as Speaker of the Iowa House of Representatives and who has extensive agriculture experience, was appointed as a 2020-2021 EXIM Advisory Committee Member.
Additionally, on September 9, 2020, the EXIM Board of Directors unanimously approved a transaction that could facilitate the authorization of $450 million of insurance coverage on letters of credit issued by the Trade Bank of Iraq for the purchase of U.S. goods and services, such as agricultural commodities, including wheat and rice, and is estimated to support 1,700 jobs across the United States.
EXIM is an independent federal agency that promotes and supports American jobs by providing competitive and necessary export credit to support sales of U.S. goods and services to international buyers. A robust EXIM can level the global playing field for U.S. exporters when they compete against foreign companies that receive support from their governments. EXIM also contributes to U.S. economic growth by helping to create and sustain hundreds of thousands of jobs in exporting businesses and their supply chains across the United States. In recent years, approximately 90 percent of the total number of the agency's authorizations has directly supported small businesses. Since 1992, EXIM has generated more than $9 billion for the U.S. Treasury for repayment of U.S. debt.
For more information about EXIM, please visit www.exim.gov.