Why Your Boss Probably Isn't Speaking at This Conference
by Amy Payne, Heritage Foundation, April 24, 2014
President Barack Obama waves at the Export-Import Bank’s annual conference in Washington, DC in 2010. (Photo: KEVIN DIETSCH / POOL/EPA/Newscom)
American companies like Boeing, General Electric, Caterpillar, and John Deere are in the club.
What about your company?
These are just a few of the firms you might have heard of that benefit from the Export-Import Bank. It’s a government program that loans money to foreign governments and companies to buy stuff from American companies.
And when the U.S. government is loaning money, you know where it’s coming from: Taxpayers are backing those loans.
So taxpayers are helping Washington cronies dole out special treatment to certain companies. As usual, that’s unfair to taxpayers. But it’s also unfair to all the other companies in America that are making products they might want to sell.
If you’re one of Boeing’s competitors, for example, how do you compete against government-subsidized loans that are helping other nations buy from Boeing?
This program isn’t an American jobs engine. It’s just showing taxpayer-funded favoritism to some companies over others. And that doesn’t help American workers.
Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) told The Foundry he believes this program represents “the face of cronyism.”
The Export-Import Bank is holding its annual conference today and tomorrow in Washington, D.C. If you’re someone like Emilio Lozoya Austin, you’re a featured speaker. He’s the CEO of PEMEX, Mexico’s state-run oil company. PEMEX has borrowed billions from the Export-Import Bank over the years.
Now, the Bank wants to assure people that it steps in to finance “otherwise commercially viable transactions.” Where have we heard that before? Just about every other taxpayer-backed program, whether it’s green energy or housing finance. If these deals were so viable on their own, why do they need American taxpayers getting involved?
They don’t. Taxpayer shouldn’t be backing loans for corporate cronyism.
If you agree, sign our petition to end the Export-Import Bank.
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