Fred Hochberg, chairman and president of the U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank, addressed participants at the 2015 IAM Industrial Conference in Chicago this week.
The bank has always been a key partner to both large and small export businesses and American working families. It is also a target of Tea Party Republicans who are pushing to cut its reauthorization.
|Ex-Im Bank Chairman Fred Hochberg speaks to the IAM Industrial Conference.|
“American labor is a winning tradition. It’s a tradition of overcoming long odds,” said Hochberg. “That’s why Ex-Im exists. We work with American manufacturers, large and small; to equip them with the financing they need to go toe-to-toe with foreign rivals. And we do that because our mission is the same as it’s been since 1934: supporting good-paying American jobs.”
Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal agency that supports and maintains U.S. jobs by filling gaps in private export financing at no cost to American taxpayers. The Bank provides a variety of financing mechanisms, including working capital guarantees and export credit insurance, to promote the sale of U.S. goods and services abroad. Ninety percent of its transactions directly serve American small businesses.
”When I travel around this country, I meet many of your members, and I get an opportunity to see firsthand just how exports contribute to job creation.” said Hochberg. “American workers have never needed a handout. You just need a level playing field. We don’t have to make the cheapest products in order to compete. After all, when you shop for groceries, a car, whatever it is, you’re not looking for the cheapest thing. You’re looking for value.”
The Ex-Im Bank acts as Plan B, as Hochberg put it, for American export companies when private financing is unavailable to them. He explained how the bank is often the only source when facing unfair global competition. He closed his remarks by addressing the ever increasing threat that foreign government backed financing poses.
“If history has proven anything, it’s that American workers are always up for the fight,” said Hochberg. “Ex-Im has been there alongside you for more than eight decades, and we want to be there for all of the battles you’ve got ahead.”