US Republican slams Boeing – Ex Im deal

By Victoria July 22, 2014 12:07

US Republican slams Boeing – Ex Im deal

US government Republican House committee chairman Jeb Hensarling has written a letter criticising Boeing and a large U.S. trade group for lobbying to keep the Export-Import Bank alive, saying that  their efforts amounted to petitioning for “special privilege.”

Hensarling wrote the letter to Jay Timmons, president of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), and James McNerney, chairman of Boeing, referring to reports that they were visiting lawmakers to promote the re-authorization of the bank.

Ex-Im Bank promotes exports by offering financing to foreign buyers of U.S. goods, helping some major companies such as Boeing to compete internationally.

Hensarling has alleged that the bank’s activity amounts to favouring multinational companies at the expense of U.S. taxpayers. The financial services committee he leads has jurisdiction over the bank, and Hensarling is trying to stop the US Congress from renewing its charter when it expires on September 30th.

In the letter, Hensarling said: “I respect your constitutional right to petition your government for the redress of grievances. I just wish you had used the occasion to petition for opportunity instead of special privilege.”

A NAM spokesman defended the group’s position, saying: “The NAM continues to be committed to manufacturers, their families and the communities they serve and protecting them by making sure the Ex-Im Bank is reauthorized.”
A Boeing spokeswoman said the company had not received a letter from Hensarling, but that the Ex-Im Bank was “vital” to Boeing’s ability to compete successfully.

“We believe there exists a clear majority in Congress that supports the continuation of the U.S. Ex-Im Bank,” she said.

Ex-Im bank supporters say that, in addition to helping big companies such as Boeing, it helps thousands of small US businesses with trade credit insurance or loan guarantees. They argue that other countries do more to support their exports.

Hensarling said: “Over 98% of U.S. exports are financed successfully without Ex-Im and taxpayer backing, so I do not find the argument that ‘Everyone else is doing it, so must we’ to be particularly persuasive.”

Last year, Ex-Im’s loans backed $37.4 billion of U.S. exports and supported 205,000 U.S. jobs.

By Victoria July 22, 2014 12:07
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