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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 24, 2002

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Niki Shepperd (202) 565-3200

The Export Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and the Illinois Department of Agriculture will host a one-day conference Tuesday, October 1, highlighting opportunities in Southeast Europe for U.S. exporters and investors looking to do business in the region. Conference participants will hear about U.S. government trade, investment and finance programs and gain information on the business environment in the region. The event is opened to the press.

What: Business Opportunities in Southeast Europe Conference
Conference registration fee is $65 ($75 at the door) includes continental breakfast and lunch

When: Tuesday, October 1, 2002
7:30 a.m.- 5 p.m.

Where: The Western River North
320 North Dearborne
Chicago, IL.

Ex-Im Bank Director Dan Renberg will give a keynote luncheon address discussing the role Ex-Im Bank plays in helping to expand trade between the United States and Southeast Europe. Countries of focus include Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Yugoslavia, Slovenia, Macedonia, Albania, Romania and Bulgaria.

Ex-Im Bank believes the Southeast European region has tremendous growth potential. It is our goal to help U.S. companies realize this potential by assisting them with the financing to be able to begin or expand exports to this region, said Renberg,
The conference is a great opportunity for Illinois businesses to learn how both local and federal government agencies can assist them in their exporting needs, Renberg added.

The event is co-sponsored by OPIC, TDA USAID, the Chicago World Trade Center, U.S. Foreign Commercial Service and the Department of Agriculture. Some of the industry sectors covered in this conference will include food and agriculture, energy, infrastructure, transportation and IT. Participants will be able to schedule one-on-one meetings with U.S. government experts and network with others interested in the region.

For more information on the conference, please contact Emily Brinkmoeller, World Trade Center Chicago (WTCC) at 312-467-0603 or email at ebrinkmoeller@wtcc.org.

Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal government agency that helps finance the sale of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets, by providing loans, guarantees and export credit insurance. In fiscal year 2001, Ex-Im Bank authorized financing to support $12.5 billion of U.S. exports worldwide.