PRESS RECAP: Cantwell Wraps Up Washington Tour of Ex-Im Bank Job Creation Success Stories

At stops across the state Cantwell called for the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, which supports 83,000 Washington state jobs

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Last week, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) concluded a two-week, statewide tour of small and medium-sized businesses that have created jobs and increased exports due to support from the Export-Import Bank. At stops in Spokane, Moses Lake, Yakima, and Everett, Cantwell joined local business owners and workers and economic development officials in calling on Congress to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank – a crucial job-creating tool for small and medium-sized businesses across the state.

Unless Congress reauthorizes the bank’s charter before May 31 when it expires, the Export-Import Bank will be forced to stop its assistance to U.S. exporters. In Washington state over the last five years, the bank has supported $66 billion in sales from 172 exporters. The bank currently supports 83,000 jobs in the state, including jobs at the companies Cantwell visited in the past two weeks.


On April 4, Cantwell started the tour in Spokane , visiting SCAFCO Grain Systems Company, which employs 237 workers locally. She was joined by Greater Spokane Incorporated and Landmark Native Seed, a small business employing 18 workers. The bank has helped SCAFCO expand its sales of grain storage systems to 11 additional countries and has boosted Landmark’s exports to China.

Spokesman Review: “Larry Stone, president and CEO of SCAFCO, noted that since 2003 Ex-Im support has helped his company make deals with silo buyers in 11 countries. …Stone said those deals help make his 275 workers’ jobs more secure.”

Spokesman Review (Editorial): “Ex-Im Bank renewal should be automatic. …Although Boeing Co. is by far the biggest beneficiary, in the last five years several Eastern Washington companies – SCAFCO in Spokane, Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories in Pullman, and Colmac Coil in Colville – have done more than $3 million worth of foreign business with Ex-Im’s help. Dozens, if not hundreds, of jobs have been created or sustained.”

KHQ TV: “Washington Senator Maria Cantwell was in Spokane making a call to Congress to extend the Export-Import Bank. She calls the bank, quote, ‘A crucial job creating tool for small businesses across Washington state.’ The Senator visited a grains system company in Spokane Valley, which is one of several local companies the bank finances allowing them to expand their operations and create new jobs and opportunities.”

KXLY TV: “The Export-Import Bank is America’s official export credit agency. And it helps companies like SCAFCO Grain Systems in Spokane Valley sell its products overseas.”


Also on April 4, Cantwell was in Moses Lake touring Sonico, a small business that performs service repair work on airplanes for some of the world’s largest airlines. The Export-Import Bank has helped Sonico take on over 40 new foreign clients and grow its workforce by 20 percent.

Columbia Basin Herald: “In Moses Lake, Sonico President Bill Perdue said there are all kinds of small businesses that benefit from the bank. ‘We don't think we're alone,’ he commented. ‘We're hoping through us and others, she [Cantwell] can put a story together to make sure Ex-Im (the bank) gets reauthorized.’”


On April 5 in Yakima, Cantwell joined a music stand manufacturer, Manhasset Specialty Company, and the Greater Yakima Chamber of Commerce to highlight the bank’s impact on Yakima County’s economy. In the past five years, the bank has supported more than $15 million in sales from nine Yakima County companies. Manhasset has used the bank to double its foreign sales in just the past five years.

Yakima Herald: “Cantwell and Manhasset general manager Barry Heid say the manufacturing company would not have achieved the growth it's seen in recent years without the bank. If the bank ceases its export financing, ‘Our sales would likely go down,’ Heid said.”

KAPP TV: ‘“He’s [Manhasset general manager Barry Heid] focused on making a great product and because of that they are world-renowned. But if he had to worry every single day about all of those customers and their ability to pay it would make for a different day for him. So this financing mechanism has been a very, very positive tool to grow jobs,’ said Cantwell.”

KNDO TV: ‘“When you’re talking about Yakima the fact that Manhasset can employ these people and reach 40 markets around the globe is really, really important for us and for our economy,’ said Cantwell.”


On April 10 in Everett, Cantwell wrapped up the statewide tour with Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) at Esterline’s Everett facility, which employs more than 600 workers and manufactures the cockpit hardware found on every Boeing plane built since 1937. The Export-Import Bank has supported about one in three Boeing planes built in Washington state in the past three years, or about 450 commercial aircraft.

In March, Cantwell introduced a bipartisan amendment – which Murray cosponsored – to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank for four years. Cantwell’s amendment extends the Export-Import Bank until 2015 and increases its lending authority from $100 billion to $140 billion. The Washington Council on International Trade, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Small Business Association, and the National Association of Manufacturers support the bank’s reauthorization.

Everett Herald: “Cantwellsaid that failing to reauthorize the Ex-Im bank would ‘be almost like hitting the aerospace industry in the stomach.’”

Everett Herald (Editorial): “The latest bout of dysfunction in Congress, believe it or not, could essentially yank profits away from the Boeing Co. and hand them to its chief rival, Europe-based Airbus. Two members from Washington, Sen. Maria Cantwell and Rep. Rick Larsen, are acting as the adults in the room, working to forge a bipartisan consensus against such self-destructive ends.”

The News Tribune, The Bellingham Herald,The Olympian: “If Congress fails to act, no state will be harder hit than Washington, one of the bank’s biggest beneficiaries and the nation’s most trade-dependent states, where one of every three jobs is tied to international trade. That’s according to Washington Democratic Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, who are pushing hard to keep the bank alive, saying 83,000 jobs are at stake in their home state.”

KING TV: “A call for Congress to act and extend the Export-Import Bank. Washington state senators Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray say that the bank supports businesses across Washington that export products.”

KOMO TV: “Our state’s U.S. Senators made a stop in Everett today to support a program that makes aerospace companies more competitive. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell toured Korry Electronics, a major supplier in the aerospace industry. It employs 600 people and is helped by something called the Export-Import Bank.”

KIRO TV: “‘We need to put the partisan bickering aside and get the work done that will help us with jobs in America. And it’s come time right now to make sure that we are doing everything we can to make sure the aerospace industry is as competitive as it can be,’ said Cantwell.”