The Export-Import Reform and Reauthorization Act would reauthorize the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im Bank) through fiscal year 2019, as well as introduce reforms on taxpayer protection, promotion of small businesses, modernization, and other subjects. The Ex-Im Bank is an independent agency for the purpose of providing financial aid and insurance for the export of United States goods and services. It was established in 1934 and has existed as an independent institution since 1945. The bill would cap the total loans of the Ex-Im Bank at $135 billion for fiscal years 2015-19 and would introduce a wide variety of reforms to the bank. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Il) boasted bipartisan support for the bill with three other republicans and three democrats in his press release. The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs concluded an examination of the Ex-Im Bank and the bill on June 4. It awaits a vote in committee.
The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Mar 19, 2015.
Export-Import Bank Reform and Reauthorization Act of 2015
This bill amends the Export-Import Bank Act of 1945 to reduce, for each of FY2015-FY2019, the authorized aggregate amount of loans, guarantees, and insurance the Export-Import Bank may have outstanding at any time.
The Bank shall build to and hold in reserve, to protect against future losses, at least 5% of its aggregate amount of disbursed and outstanding loans, guarantees, and insurance.
The Export-Import Bank Reauthorization Act of 2012 (EIBRA) is amended to require the Government Accountability Office's quadrennial review of the adequacy of the design and effectiveness of the Bank's fraud controls to include review of the Bank's compliance with these controls.
An Office of Ethics is established within the Bank to recommend administrative actions to establish or enforce standards of official conduct.
A Chief Risk Officer of the Bank is established to oversee all issues relating to risk within the Bank.
A Risk Management Committee is also established to:
oversee periodic stress testing on the entire Bank portfolio and the monitoring of industry, geographic, and obligor exposure levels; and review all required reports on the Bank's default rate. The Bank's Inspector General shall conduct an audit or evaluation of the Bank's portfolio risk management procedures, including its implementation of the duties assigned to the Chief Risk Officer.
The Bank may establish a pilot program under which it may enter into contracts and other arrangements to share risks associated with its provision of guarantees, insurance, or credit, or participation in the extension of credit.
The Bank shall: (1) increase from 20% to 25% of its lending authority the amount made available to finance direct exports by small business concerns, and (2) include in its annual report to Congress a report on its programs for U.S. businesses with less than $250 million in annual sales.
The Bank may use a portion of its surplus through FY2019 to update its information technology systems.
The Bank, the Sub-Saharan Africa Advisory Committee, and authority for dual use exports (of nonlethal defense articles or services primarily for civilian use) are reauthorized through FY2019.
The principal amounts of medium-term financing by the Bank are limited to $25 million
Increased from a minimum of $10 million to a minimum of $25 million are the amounts of:
long-term loans or loan guarantees the Bank may insure, working capital export loans and guarantees to small businesses, and long-term support for projects to which certain procedures apply regarding the potential beneficial and adverse environmental effects of goods and services for which direct lending and guarantee support is requested. The Bank may never:
deny an application for financing based solely on the industry, sector, or business that the application concerns; or promulgate or implement policies that discriminate against an application based solely on the industry, sector, or business that the application concerns. The EIBRA is amended to require the President instead of the Department of the Treasury to initiate and pursue negotiations to end export credit financing.
The President shall propose to Congress a strategy the U.S. government will pursue with other major exporting countries, including Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) members and non-OECD members, to eliminate over a period of 10 years subsidized export-financing programs, tied aid, export credits, and all other forms of government-supported export subsidies.
The Bank shall study the extent to which products it offers are available and used by companies that export information and communications technology services and related goods.