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EXPORT-IMPORT BANK CHAIRMAN JAMES A. HARMON LEADING BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MISSION TO NAMIBIA

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 15, 1998

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

David W. Carter (202) 565-3200

Ex-Im Bank expects to finance sales to Namibia this year and Chairman Harmon`s visit at this time will better equip him to make informed decisions on this important market. Harmon said, Emerging markets like Namibia are extremely important to U.S. exporters. I believe that Ex-Im Bank can have a significant impact on the economic development of Namibia and future U.S. exports. Historically, Ex-Im Bank has led the way for business development in countries like Namibia which should lead to additional trade financing by commercial lenders, especially as we develop strong business relationships.

Ex-Im Bank is open to consider business in 18 sub-Saharan Africa countries. Since 1993, Ex-Im Bank has financed $653 million in exports to nine sub-Saharan Africa countries.

This business development mission is a natural follow-up to the efforts Ex-Im Bank has made domestically to increase awareness in the export community about the potential market sub-Saharan Africa offers, Harmon said. Ex-Im Bank recently established a sub-Saharan Africa advisory committee, appointed a special coordinator for SSA activities and has teamed up with the Corporate Council on Africa to educate U.S. exporters.

Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal agency that is a valuable partner for U.S. exporters. Since 1993, Ex-Im Bank has completed over 11,000 financial transactions. In the past five years the Bank has made a major effort to reach out to small businesses. Small companies account for more than 80 percent of Ex-Im Bank`s transactions.