Opinion: Senator Sinema is fighting for Arizona jobs by returning their competitive advantage


Arizona businesses can go head-to-head with any foreign competitor – and win. Yet, our state’s businesses are missing a critical tool in their arsenal that would help them win more deals: the Export-Import (EXIM) Bank. The EXIM Bank supports American jobs by helping to finance the export of American-made goods and services to buyers all around the world. It has supported nearly 2 million jobs and earned almost $10 billion for taxpayers. 

However, the bank’s charter has expired, leaving many Arizona small businesses without the competitive advantage the bank provides. Fortunately for Arizona workers and businesses, U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema is taking the lead on standing up for these jobs. Senator Sinema recently introduced bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the EXIM bank. This legislation would go a long way for the many American businesses who are supported by EXIM.

The EXIM Bank has had a significant impact on Arizona’s economy. Over 50 small businesses have been supported by EXIM, generating over $2 billion in exports from our state. These exports support Arizona jobs and keeps our businesses strong.

EXIM Bank is a security blanket for KieTek when shipping all over Canada & South America.  It’s very difficult to negotiate payment prior to shipping when international customers want assurance they’re getting what they hoped before funds are transferred.  It helps to know we’re covered – especially in an industry where cost of materials continues to climb.

EXIM has also worked with a diverse group of business leaders. Out of the dozens of small businesses that have relied on EXIM, many are owned by women or minorities and several are environmentally beneficial. Critics of EXIM may say that the bank only supports big business. But the dozens of Arizona small businesses that have utilized the bank’s financing prove that is just not the case. By working with the bank, small businesses across our state have been able to hire more workers and increase their bottom line.

It’s also an issue of national security. Countries like China are actively doubling down on their own export credit agencies. They are hoping that by inserting their own businesses into global markets, they will expand their sphere of influence throughout the world. We shouldn’t unilaterally disarm our own bank while other countries are relying heavily on theirs to get a competitive edge. EXIM helps provide stability in an uncertain world by ensuring America has a presence in global emerging markets.

Senator Sinema’s bipartisan bill is win-win. It will help support Arizona jobs and small businesses while also helping to solidify America’s place in important global markets. We applaud her for taking the lead on this vital issue and urge her colleagues in Congress to join her fight for American jobs and security.

 

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