Congress’ failure to reauthorize Export-Import Bank could hinder local exporters

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By Yvette C. Hammett

The nation’s exporters have lost what many consider an important asset for expanding their businesses in foreign lands — the Export-Import Bank of the United States.

Congress failed to reauthorize the 81-year-old bank June 30, leaving the legislation stalled in a House committee as members headed home for summer break.

A vote is expected Monday on the House floor on whether to breathe new life into the bank known as Ex-Im.

Local export businesses — there are 75 in the Tampa Bay region — have sought millions from the bank since 2007 to ensure access to competitive export financing that private banks don’t offer and to insure shipments to foreign ports. Other countries around the globe have similar credit agencies, which make it easier for businesses in each of those countries to sell their products outside their borders.

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