BEIJING, Nov. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Fred P. Hochberg, the chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank), is leading a business development mission to China November 5 – 10. Hochberg, who has meetings scheduled in Beijing, Tianjin, and Shanghai, will promote President Obama's National Export Initiative and seek opportunities for American companies to sell more products and services to this growing market.
"The United States and China have a unique and long-lasting relationship and that is why Ex-Im Bank supports projects that benefit both countries," said Chairman Hochberg. "Over the last decade, U.S. exports to China have increased, yet the country accounts for only 2 percent of the Bank's portfolio. That number needs to grow. I have seen firsthand the enormous opportunities for U.S. exporters in China, and Ex-Im Bank will continue to encourage American business owners to explore this dynamic market."
Beijing: While in Beijing, Chairman Hochberg met with U.S. Ambassador Locke and with representatives from business organizations, including Vice Minister Li Yong of the Ministry of Finance, Vice Chairman Zhang Xiao Qiang of the National Development and Reform Commission, and Chairman Li Ruogu of China Ex-Im Bank. Hochberg also participated in an AmCham roundtable discussion.
Hochberg said his visit with the Minister of Finance was "intended to reaffirm our high regard for the working relationship we have established with the Ministry under the Framework Agreement signed in 2005, and to underscore the importance of the U.S.-China bilateral trade and investment relationship."
To date, Ex-Im Bank has completed 15 sovereign-guaranteed loans, with an aggregate financed amount of $254 million. Ex-Im completed two new sovereign-guaranteed loans under the Framework Agreement last summer totaling $74 million for more than 250 cotton harvesting machines for the Xinjiang Agriculture Cultivation Group. Two other potential medical transactions are in the pipeline for about $60 million.
"This is good," Chairman Hochberg said, "but it is not good enough. U.S. export volume with China has been growing steadily, but not enough to keep pace with the growth of this dynamic economy."
Hochberg said the Ex-Im team that he brought to China "has come to get a better understanding of the market so that we can identify opportunities to more effectively promote the sovereign loan program."
The Chinese industry sectors representing opportunities for American companies include; agricultural and food products, including beef; turbine engines for railway products; information technology and medical products.
Tianjin: Hochberg will hold discussions with representatives from UniSola and LiShen in Tianjin and will tour both factories. He will also meet with Tianjin Vice Mayor Cui Jindu.
Shanghai: In Shanghai, Hochberg will focus on financial services and participate in an AmCham roundtable discussion. He will meet with representatives from Wells Fargo, Shanghai Electric, Deloitte, the Association of Manufacturing Technologies, and the Shanghai Development Hospital Center. The chairman will conclude his business development mission in China by delivering a speech at the China Europe International Business School.
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. 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 more than $32 billion in total authorizations in FY 2011 -- an all-time record. This total includes more than $6 billion directly supporting small-business export sales. Ex-Im Bank's total authorizations are supporting more than $40 billion in U.S. export sales and an estimated 300,000 American jobs in communities across the country. Additional information is available at www.exim.gov.
SOURCE Export-Import Bank of the United States