13:08 GMT +319 November 2017
    Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft are seen stored in the boneyard at the Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group on Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Arizona

    Executives Urge Congress to Renew Ex-Im Bank to Save US Aerospace Industry

    © AFP 2017/ Brendan Smialowski
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    Congress must reauthorize the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank, so that the US aerospace industry can successfully compete in the global markets, seventy-two CEOs and other senior aerospace industry leaders said in a letter to legislators.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Aerospace Industries Association represents more than 2 300 major aerospace and defense companies and their suppliers, embodying every sector of them, according to the organization’s own statement.

    “As leaders of the aerospace and defense industry, we cannot underscore enough the importance of the Ex-Im Bank to our industry,” the letter, sent on Monday by Aerospace Industries Association President and CEO Dave Melcher, read.

    In 2014, the Ex-Im Bank supplied more than $20 billion in financing to support $27 billion in exports from deals that supported more than 160,000 US jobs, the letter observed.

    “For many of us, the livelihood of our workers and their families depend on US exports.”

    Exports of passenger and business aircraft, helicopters, satellites, spacecraft and launch vehicles remained essential to the industry’s prosperity and survival, the letter continued.

    The aerospace executives warned of a “significant impact to our nation's economy and the aerospace and defense industry if the [Ex-IM] Bank is not re-authorized.”

    The letter urged Congress to pass a long-term reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank.

    “American aerospace companies can compete and win in the in global marketplace against our overseas counterparts. But we cannot do it with one hand tied behind our backs,” the executives said.

    They insisted that foreign competitors continued to enjoy significant financial assistance from their export credit agencies, which were better funded than the Ex-Im Bank, and better able to furnish a greater range of financing options.

    “Failure to reauthorize the Bank will greatly damage many in our industry and will place American companies at a disadvantage in the global market place,” the US executives warned. “[W]e need every tool and leverage factor to compete fairly.”

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