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WMC: Wisconsin Needs Ex-Im Bank Approval

Dear Editor:
Wisconsin is a manufacturing state and a significant percentage of what we make here is exported around the globe. But Congress’s failure to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank has put thousands of Wisconsin manufacturing jobs in jeopardy.
The Ex-Im Bank finances the purchase of U.S.-produced goods to foreign buyers, like Boeing 787s to international air carriers. The U.S. is now the only industrialized nation in the world without a government agency to perform that function, leaving U.S. exporters at a clear competitive disadvantage.
In Wisconsin, 224 exporters had been using the Ex-Im Bank.
Ninety-five percent of the world’s consumers already live outside the U.S. In the future, population and middle class wealth will expand dramatically in the Asia-Pacific region, while both will be stagnant in North America and Europe. That means U.S. manufacturers need to find foreign markets for their products in order to survive.
Unfortunately, Wisconsin manufacturers are already at a disadvantage because the U.S. has the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world and because of the rapid expansion of federal regulations. The D.C.-based Manufacturing Institute estimates that it costs 20 percent more to make something in the U.S. versus abroad. The absence of an Ex-Im Bank adds to that disparity. Congress must reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank.
Kurt R. Bauer
Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce




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