Tester: Congress continues down a path of putting politics ahead of American jobs

Senator pushes for reauthorization of Export-Import Bank

(U.S. Senate) – One week after Congress failed to pass a long-term Highway bill and left good-paying jobs in limbo, Senator Jon Tester says Congress is heading down the same path with the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and must act quickly to provide certainty for American businesses.

Tester today voiced his frustrations with Congressional inaction to provide long-term reauthorization for the Ex-Im Bank which has a record of creating jobs and increasing private sector investment. Current authorization for the Ex-Im Bank is set to expire on June 30.

“Creating jobs and providing small businesses certainty shouldn’t be controversial,” said Tester, a senior member of the Senate Banking Committee. “The Ex-Im Bank has a strong record of helping Montana’s exporters reach new markets. Unfortunately, Congress again seems to be heading down a path of putting politics ahead of Montana jobs and continues to be a roadblock for long-term economic investment.”

The Ex-Im Bank is the official export credit agency of the United States and helps facilitate the export of U.S. goods and services. Since 2007, the Ex-Im Bank has insured or financed $10 million for 16 Montana businesses.

In 2014, the Ex-Im Bank facilitated $27.4 billion of U.S. exports nationwide and supported 164,000 American jobs. Nearly 90 percent of the Ex-Im Bank’s transactions directly support American small businesses. None of this support comes at a cost to U.S. taxpayers as the Ex-Im Bank actually returned $674.7 million to the U.S. Treasury last year after covering all of its expenses.

Last year, Congress reauthorized the Ex-Im Bank for only nine months, leaving thousands of American small businesses with uncertainty about financing.

In March, the House rejected a call to bring up an amendment that would have reauthorized the Ex-Im Bank for seven years. The measure failed on a party line vote.