Emerging markets provide tremendous opportunities for U.S. exports: expert

11:35, July 11, 2010      

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Aiming at fulfilling President Barack Obama's ambitious goal of doubling exports in five years and creating 2 million jobs, U.S. trade-related agencies are targeting the fast-growing markets.

"There are tremendous opportunities for U.S. goods and service, not just in our domestic market, but also overseas, in many developing economies," Diane Farrell, member of the board of directors of the U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im bank), told Xinhua on Thursday.

"We have a very rich economy in the United States; there are a lot of companies that are only manufacturing in the U.S.," said Farrell, who is responsible for voting on Ex-Im bank transactions over 10 million dollars as well as on significant matters affecting the bank's policy.

"As we've seen the economic downturn ... we need to look to emerging markets, primarily in Asia and Latin America," she said.

"The U.S. government's National Export Initiative (NEI) is attempting to educate businesses, to let them know that it's a good economic decision to look beyond our borders in terms of expanding their own business interests, and also to know the U.S. government through a variety of programs," she said.

President Obama set a goal to double U.S. exports in five years in his State of the Union address earlier this year. In March, he also announced the establishment of the president's Export Promotion Cabinet, of which the Ex-Im Bank is a member.

Many economists believe the president's export goal is unrealistic and have criticized the jobless recovery.

Farrell is generally optimistic about the NEI. Established during the period of the Great Depression in the 1930s by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Ex-Im Bank has supported more than 400 billion dollars in U.S. exports, primarily to developing markets worldwide.

Regarding U.S.-China economic and trade relations, Farrell said that with a population of over 1.3 billion, "China is an extremely important economic partner for the U.S."

She said that there is strong interdependency between the two countries, and that the bilateral relationship is mutually advantageous.

Although there is friction between the two major global trade partners, Farrell believed that there is a strong base of cooperation between the two sides.

"We need each other," she said. "We hope it will be a win-win situation."

The Ex-Im Bank is the official export credit agency of the United States. Its mission is to assist in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to international markets.

Unlike commercial banks, the Ex-Im Bank provides export financing products including working capital guarantees, export credit insurance, loan guarantees and direct loans that fill gaps in trade financing. About 85 percent of the transactions directly benefit small U.S. businesses.



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