Trump Administration Officials Call for a Fully Functional Ex-Im Bank

During a meeting of Commerce’s Trade Finance Advisory Committee today, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross urged the Senate to act quickly to confirm President Trump’s nominees for the Ex-Im Bank’s board of directors.

Since 2015, the Ex-Im Bank has been unable to operate at full capacity due to a lack of board quorum. The Senate Banking Committee approved four nominees to the Ex-Im board in December, but has not voted to confirm them.

Secretary Ross explained that manufacturers in the U.S. are being held back, as export credit agencies in other countries, including China, fill the vacuum as the U.S. Export-Import Bank remains hobbled. (Reported by Bloomberg Law)

During a House Financial Services Committee hearing earlier this month, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also confirmed President Trump’s desire to get the Export-Import Bank back up and running.

“…the President does want to open the Export-Import Bank for business… we are looking to fill the board,” said Secretary Mnuchin.

Additionally, as reported in The Hill, a bipartisan group of 68 House lawmakers sent a letter to their colleagues in the Senate this week urging action.

“We believe the Senate should move forward expediently in approving these nominees so that Ex-Im can continue to play the important role it has in past years, supporting U.S. exports and creating and maintaining U.S. jobs,” the letter said.

The Ex-Im Bank recently estimated there are now about 40 deals worth more than $30 billion that are stuck in the pipeline until a Board quorum is reached. These lost opportunities don’t just impact the manufacturers directly, but the countless supply chain companies of all shapes and sizes across the U.S. who support them.