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House Reauthorizes Export-Import Bank

On May 1, the House approved, by voice vote, a bill (H.R. 2871) that would reauthorize the Export-Import Bank for four years. Sponsored by Rep. Doug Bereuter (R-NE), the measure includes a provision that would require the Export-Import Bank to place an emphasis on “conducting outreach and increasing loans to businesses not less than 51 percent of which are directly and unconditionally owned by 1 or more socially disadvantaged individuals or women.” The provision, authored by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), would require the bank to report to Congress on its progress.

In addition, H.R. 2871 would authorize $2 million in FY2002 for outreach to small businesses and includes a sense of Congress emphasizing the importance of technology improvements for small businesses. H.R. 2871 also would require the bank to “implement technology improvements which are designed to improve small business outreach.”

The House also approved, by voice vote, a bill (H.R. 2604) that would reauthorize U.S. participation in multilateral development organizations. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Bereuter, would authorize a $412 million contribution to the Asian Development Fund and a $30 million contribution to the International Fund for Agricultural Development. The bill also would authorize U.S. participation in several other regional multilateral banks.

The bill includes a provision to fight HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases by requiring the U.S. executive directors of multilateral banks to support efforts by the banks to develop and implement a strategic plan to combat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and other infectious diseases.

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