Ex-Im Bank Extension ‘Vital’ for General Aviation

 - May 8, 2012, 4:03 PM
Cessna Aircraft is one of the general aviation aircraft manufacturers in the U.S. that relies on the Export-Import Bank to help finance some of its business jets that are slated to be delivered to foreign customers.

GAMA hailed a bipartisan agreement reached on Friday between Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Democratic House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer to end an impasse over the reauthorization of the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank. The agreement, which is slated for a vote in the full House tomorrow, would extend the bank’s charter for three years and increase its lending authority to $140 billion. The Export-Import Bank’s charter lapses at the end of this month.

“General aviation relies on Ex-Im tremendously,” GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce said two weeks ago at an aircraft finance conference, adding that it helps the industry “to compete globally.” He cited Hawker Beechcraft and Cessna as just two of the GA aircraft manufacturers that use the Export-Import Bank to help finance aircraft going to foreign buyers.

According to GAMA, the bank’s reauthorization is vital to the industry’s ability to grow and maintain exports as general aviation manufacturing recovers from the economic downturn. Additionally, it said, the exports generated are key for job creation and for the Obama Administration’s efforts to double exports by the end of 2014.

The Senate has yet to act on a companion bill, but last year the Senate Finance Committee unanimously passed a measure that would have extended the bank’s charter by four years and increase its lending authority to $140 billion.