The Export-Import Bank of the United States will participate in U.S. Global Business Solutions, a new interagency initiative to expand the reach of federal export assistance and add 50,000 small businesses to the nation’s exporter base by 2017.
The pilot program will also aim at expanding the base of financial institutions and service providers that facilitate exports, adding an expected 250 trade finance sources by December 2015, according to Karen Mills, U.S. Small Business administrator.
Six federal agencies will be participating, including Ex-Im Bank, the U.S. Small Business Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency and the Overseas Private Investment Corp.
Ex-Im Bank has also entered into a new marketing partnership with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to help the state boost export sales by providing exporters, particularly small businesses, with access to information about the bank’s resources. The city/state partnership will connect bank products and services to a statewide network of small business development centers and international trade centers.
“We are committed to helping our small and medium-sized businesses in Illinois gain access to capital to expand markets outside the U.S.,” said Adam Pollet, DCEO director, in a written statement.
Additionally, Ex-Im Bank has awarded Thomas J. Donohue, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, with its Chairman’s Award for highlighting how Ex-Im Bank helps small and medium-sized businesses, which in turn pushed Congress to reauthorize the bank. The award was presented at the bank’s 38th annual conference in Washington.
Ex-Im Bank also presented several other awards at the conference:
- The Lender of the Year award went to J.P. Morgan for consistently being among the Top 5 most active users of the bank’s Working Capital program. In 2012, J.P. Morgan used the product for 36 transactions totaling more than $291 million, with $181 million going to small businesses.
- The 2013 Deal of the Year award was received by the Sadara Chemical Co., a joint venture developed by the Saudi Arabian Oil Co. and The Dow Chemical Co. Ex-Im Bank approved a nearly $5 billion direct loan to Sadara for the export of U.S. goods and services required in the construction of an integrated chemical complex in Jubail Industrial City II in Saudi Arabia. About $600 million of the loan will be used to purchase goods and service from U.S. small businesses.
- The Sub-Saharan Africa Exporter of the Year award went to General Electric Co. Ex-Im’s $9.5 million loan to the Water Treatment Technology and Chemical Company allowed the Nigerian-based business to buy equipment from GE Power & Water to help provide clean drinking water to people in West Africa.