Tomorrow the charter for the Export-Import Bank expires, putting an end to an icon of corporate welfare and crony capitalism. Ex-Im’s supporters continue to insist American businesses rely on the bank to compete despite these claims being proven false time and time again.
Many in Washington hope to renew the charter of the bank in the coming months. Here are eight reasons why Congress must not bring Ex-Im back:
1. $3.2 Billion in Loans to State Owned Airlines in Oil-Rich United Arab Emirates
Between 2009 and 2012, Ex-Im has given out $3.2 billion in loan guarantees to three state owned airlines from the United Arab Emirates to purchase airplanes from Boeing. One of the companies, Emirate Airlines, has stated such loans are unnecessary. Nevertheless, the oil rich nation officials are more than happy to accept billions of American taxpayer dollars to subsidize such generous loans.
2. Ex-Im Finances Transactions Between Two Chinese Government Entities
In yet another ‘Deal of the Day,’ Ex-Im has provided the second largest non-US company in the world, Sinopec, over $200,000 in loans only for the corporation to facilitate exports to Sinopec’s U.S. subsidiary. If you’re having flashbacks of the $15 million Caterpillar, Inc. loan that allowed the giant corporation to buy products from themselves, you would be correct.
3. Solyndra Receives $10 Million A Year Before Declaring Bankruptcy
In another wasteful loan, Ex-Im gave Obama’s favorite renewable energy company Solyndra a $10 million loan for exports. Unsurprisingly, just a year after receiving this hefty loan, Solyndra went bankrupt, as predicated by the Department of Energy.
4. $700 Million Loan Given to Australian Mining Giant
Nearly $700 million in loans was given to companies exporting equipment to Australian based mining giant, Roy Hill Mine. It’s questionable that a loan this large was even necessary considering the mine is owned by the richest woman in Australia. Adding to the disappointment, the Heritage Foundation estimated a $1.2 billion decrease in U.S. sales will be the result of this loan, as the company competes with U.S. iron ore exports.
5. Ex-Im Finances Indian Coal Plant that Displaces Indigenous Population
Despite the Obama Administration’s efforts to crack down on fossil fuels and impose burdensome regulations on American coal plants, Ex-Im gave $917 million in loans to the Sasan Coal Power Plant in India. According to a report by the Sierra Club, this power plant may have displaced indigenous residents. The report described numerous alarming abuses including forced relocation, lack of compensation for residents who lost property and denying children access to schools.
6. State Owned Saudi Arabian Oil Giant Receives Nearly $5 Billion Loan
In 2012 the Saudi Arabian owned oil company, Saudi Aramco, was given $4.97 billion in loans. Given the fact that this is the world’s largest oil company, it’s extremely unlikely that the company was in dire need of such a large loan. Even if it was, the company could have received such a loan from the private sector.
7. Ex-Im Finances $3 Billion Natural Gas Project that leads to Villagers Deaths
Ex-Im gave $3 billion to help finance a liquefied natural gas project in Papua New Guinea. The House Financial Services Committee noted that three environmental and development groups had warned the Ex-Im bank about potential environment, social, and human rights risks behind the project, including a possible landslide due to “poor management practices at a local quarry.” On January 12, 2012 a landslide did occur, taking the lives of 27 villagers.
8. 500 Million Loan Given to Mongolia Copper Mine
Despite the Copper Market Forecast predicting that refined copper was to exceed demand by more than 390,000 metric tons this year, Ex-Im still deemed it necessary to give competing Mongolian copper mine $500 million in loans. This loan undoubtedly competes with excavations in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico, to name a few.