Mar 28 2012

Spartanburg Area Chamber Backs Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank Reauthorization

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today welcomed the support of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce for reauthorization of the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank.


“The Bank has proven to be self sustaining and provides a necessary level playing field in which U.S. Companies can compete in world trade,” said David Cordeau, President and CEO of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce.  “We need to do everything we can to insure that our workers have jobs that can be supported by their ability to compete fairly in world commerce.  Exports play an important part in the economy of South Carolina and particularly in the Upstate region.”


The Export-Import Bank was established in 1934 and since Ex-Im was last reauthorized in 2006, the bank has returned $3.4 billion to the U.S. Treasury above and beyond the costs of its operations.


“I truly appreciate David Cordeau and the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce for their support of the reauthorization of the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank,” said Graham, who has been leading Republican efforts in the Senate to reauthorize the bank as its charter expires May 31.


The South Carolina House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution calling on Congress to reauthorize Ex-Im and encouraging the congressional delegation to vote in support. The South Carolina Senate overwhelmingly passed the resolution, 32-2.


Graham noted that both small and large businesses in South Carolina have benefitted from Ex-Im.  One of the most prominent statewide examples is The Boeing Company which opened the 787 Dreamliner production facility in North Charleston.  The facility employs more than 6,000 people in South Carolina and is responsible for thousands of associated jobs.


In a letter sent to Graham, Jim McNerney, President and CEO of Boeing, noted that eight out of every ten Boeing 787 Dreamliners now built in South Carolina are expected to be purchased by international customers who are eligible for and routinely seek export credit support from Ex-Im Bank.  Without Ex-Im, many of these customers would purchase from Airbus, which is made in Europe and backed by multiple European export credit agencies.


“The reauthorization of Ex-Im will directly benefit South Carolina’s job creation efforts and manufacturing industries,” said Graham.  “It is imperative we continue to grow our ability to export goods made in South Carolina around the world.”


“I wish we didn’t need an Ex-Im bank,” said Graham.  “But other countries have far more aggressive financing regimes in place.  The United States cannot and should not unilaterally disarm.  However, it is my goal to do more than reauthorize Ex-Im, we should also work to improve its operations.  I look forward to working with my Senate colleagues to achieve both goals of reauthorization and improvement of Ex-Im.”


“Last year, exports from South Carolina increased by 21 percent,” continued Graham.  “We need to continue on that path, creating jobs and putting South Carolinians back to work.  If Congress does not reauthorize Ex-Im, it will have a devastating impact to both our state and national economy.”



 South Carolina Economic Leaders Strongly Support Reauthorization of Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank


“Eight out of every ten Boeing 787 Dreamliners now built in South Carolina are expected to be purchased by international customers who are eligible for and regularly seek export credit support from Ex-Im. Without this support, many of our customers would choose to purchase airplanes from Airbus, made in Europe, built by European labor, sold with the aggressive backing of multiple European export credit agencies. ..Jobs in South Carolina are at risk without an extended and robust reauthorization for Ex-Im.”

W. James McNerney, Jr.

Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer

The Boeing Company




“Exports are particularly important to the South Carolina economy.  If our manufacturing base is to grow, we must continue to expand our ability to export goods from South Carolina facilities.  Given the key role the Bank plays in facilitating sales, failure to reauthorize it would be devastating to existing industry and to those we hope to create in the future.”

Lewis F. Gossett

President and CEO

South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance



“The Bank performs an important function for U.S. companies seeking markets for U.S. made products.  The Bank provides credit insurance and export-financing products that fill gaps in trade financing and does not compete with private sector lenders.”

W. David Hastings


Mount Vernon Mills




“First, this issue is of critical importance to Boeing South Carolina and their ability to successfully compete with global aircraft manufacturers. Second, the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce recently re-established the World Trade Center Charleston.  More than 80 percent of Ex-Im’s transactions support small businesses.  The World Trade Center Charleston’s goal is to help our region’s small business community to help them expand by selling their products and services on the global marketplace.  The Ex-Im is a vitally needed tool to help in expanding local businesses in our region.”

Bryan Derreberry

President and CEO

Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce



“Over the last five years, Ex-Im has assisted more than 47 South Carolina companies from around the state export their products and services throughout the world.  Ex-Im plays an important role in supporting South Carolina jobs and exports. …Support for the Ex-Im Bank means support for S.C. exports and S.C. jobs.”

F. Ben Haskew

President and CEO

Greenville Chamber of Commerce




“Last year alone, the Ex-Im supported more than $40 billion in U.S. exports that helped create or sustain 290,000 U.S. jobs at more than 3,600 companies.  The Ex-Im is also self-sustaining.  In the years since Ex-Im was last authorized in 2006, the bank has returned $3.4 billion to the U.S. Treasury above and beyond the cost of its operation.”

Otis Rawl

President and Chief Executive Officer

South Carolina Chamber of Commerce



“The deadline for Ex-Im is fast approaching.  If reauthorization is not granted before then, some corporations may begin to shift purchases to foreign companies as sufficient credit will not be available.  This will add a major, unintended (and unprecedented) barrier to domestic manufacturing.  ..Failure to reauthorize Ex-Im will create an unfair disadvantage for American companies, ultimately causing American jobs to move overseas.”

Brad Dean

President and CEO

Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce