Ex-Im Approves $35 million Loan Guarantee to Finance Export of U.S. Products and Expertise to Iraq

WASHINGTON, Nov. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The board of the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) voted to guarantee a JPMorgan Chase loan totaling $35 million to Devco International LLC (Devco) of Tulsa, Okla., for the design and construction of a sulfur purification plant in Mosul, Iraq.

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Ex-Im Bank's financing will support approximately 380 U.S. jobs, according to bank estimates derived from Departments of Commerce and Labor data and methodology.

"This significant transaction not only supports American small-business jobs here at home, but it also supports the sulfur and agricultural industries in Iraq," said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg. "By providing a working–capital guarantee, Ex-Im Bank is demonstrating that we are always looking to support U.S. exporters and grow our economy by creating quality jobs here at home."

Devco utilizes as part of its design a modular concept that maximizes labor concentration in a fabrication-shop environment. The company will design, procure, fabricate, and pre-assemble the plant in the United States and then ship the plant in modular form to Iraq. Upon arrival, Al Hawarth, an Iraqi-owned company, will re-assemble the facility outside the riverside city of Mosul.  

The plant will process sulfur from underground deposits utilizing a priority process, Submerged Combustion Distillation, developed by CTI Consulting of New Orleans, La. The Al-Mishraq Sulphur State Company, which will own and operate the facility, plans to retail the purified sulfur output in Iraq for domestic use. Sulfur is a key ingredient in fertilizer and therefore is in demand within the agricultural sector.

"We are proud to support Devco International LLC in this important transaction which will create hundreds of American jobs," said Lillian Labbat, managing director, J.P. Morgan. "We see exports as a key driver of economic expansion.  Our export finance capabilities and global footprint are what enable us to help small businesses to compete and to succeed."

Founded in 1978, Devco is a chemical-engineering firm that designs sulfur-handling equipment. The small-business company developed a wet-processing technology known as the Devco II Wet Pelletizing Technology, which converts molten sulfur into solid sulfur pellets in a process that is both economical and environmentally friendly.

"We are very pleased with the support being provided to us by Ex-Im Bank on this critical project. A project such as this would have been difficult to obtain without their dedicated assistance," said Doug Houston, the owner and chief executive officer of Devco. "Projects of this magnitude allow us to extend and expand our technical staff, while supplying significant job opportunities for our fabrication partners in several locations throughout the United States. This project heightens the company's opportunity to provide additional United States based technology and equipment solutions for Iraq."

ABOUT EX-IM BANK:

Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal agency that helps create and maintain U.S. jobs by filling gaps in private export financing at no cost to American taxpayers. In the past five years (from Fiscal Year 2008), Ex-Im Bank has earned for U.S. taxpayers nearly $1.6 billion above the cost of operations. The Bank provides a variety of financing mechanisms, including working capital guarantees, export-credit insurance and financing to help foreign buyers purchase U.S. goods and services.

Ex-Im Bank approved $35.8 billion in total authorizations in FY 2012 – an all-time Ex-Im record. This total includes more than $6.1 billion directly supporting small-business export sales – also an Ex-Im record. Ex-Im Bank's total authorizations are supporting an estimated $50 billion in U.S. export sales and approximately 255,000 American jobs in communities across the country. For more information, visit www.exim.gov.

SOURCE Export-Import Bank of the United States



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