Ghana to get fire-fighting vehicles with US loan – by Aloysius Ejimakor

The following information is from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JUNE 2, 2010
Contact: Linda Formella or Marianna Ohe, (202) 565-3200

U.S. MANUFACTURERS TO SUPPLY FIREFIGHTING VEHICLES
FOR EXPORT TO GHANA WITH EX-IM BANK BACKING

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. companies, including four subsidiaries of Oshkosh Corp., headquartered in Oshkosh, Wis., will supply 121 customized firefighting vehicles and related equipment for export to the Republic of Ghana, backed by a $41 million loan guarantee from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

The U.S. exporter is Project Development International Inc. (PDI), a small and specialized project-management company in Dunedin, Fla.

“This deal demonstrates the solid business opportunities for U.S. exporters in sub-Saharan Africa that Ex-Im Bank can help them achieve. This large export to Ghana will help maintain American jobs at these companies and expand their market share in Africa,” said Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg.

“The support from Ex-Im Bank was like wind under our wings during the years of development of this project. We value Ex-Im Bank’s expertise and the exceptionally long repayment terms for the loan that were essential to this successful sale of quality U.S.-made firefighting equipment,” PDI President James Lalumiere said.

Four Oshkosh-owned companies are participating in the export. Pierce Manufacturing Inc. in Appleton, Wis., will supply 90 pumper trucks, 10 tanker trucks and four aerial ladder trucks. Jerr-Dan Corp. in Greencastle, Pa., will supply 13 recovery trucks. Iowa Mold Tooling Co. Inc. in Garner, Iowa, is providing four service vehicles and spare parts. Oshkosh Specialty Vehicles Inc. in Harvey, Ill., is supplying four mobile breathing air compressors.

Two U.S. sub-suppliers are also participating. Bauer Compressors Inc. in Norfolk, Va., is supplying high-pressure breathing air equipment to Oshkosh Specialty Vehicles. Smeal Fire & Apparatus Co., a small business in Snyder, Neb., is providing the turntable ladders for the four Pierce aerial ladder trucks.

The export will help Oshkosh maintain employment of its highly skilled workforce in the wake of the recession of 2008-2009 that is continuing to affect domestic orders due to lagging local and state tax revenues.

“We are appreciative of the Export-Import Bank’s strong support which is the first step in making this order a reality. Oshkosh looks forward to delivering 120 vehicles from four of our businesses and continued growth throughout Africa,” said Tim Raupp, Oshkosh Corporation senior vice president and executive director of International Operations for Fire and Emergency.

The transaction is being financed by an Ex-Im Bank-guaranteed loan from Societe Generale in New York, N.Y. The repayment term is eight years. The credit is secured by the full faith and credit of the Republic of Ghana through its Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning.

The Ghana National Fire Service will purchase the equipment through Ghana’s Ministry of Interior Service. The exports will replace existing vehicles, add new equipment for urban fire fighting and help the agency in its planned expansion of fire stations.

The principal supplier, Pierce Manufacturing Inc., was established in 1913 and has manufactured firefighting trucks and related vehicles since the 1940s. The company currently employs approximately 2,250 workers at its production facilities in Appleton, Wis., and in Bradenton, Fla.

Oshkosh Corp. designs and builds a broad range of specialty trucks, truck bodies and access equipment. Oshkosh has a workforce of more than 12,600 employees at its headquarters in Oshkosh, Wis., manufacturing operations in 11 different states and operations around the world.

PDI is a project management company established in 1980 for U.S. and international construction industries. In the last decade, the company has diversified into all aspects of planning, scheduling, and material and equipment procurement.

Ex-Im Bank, an independent, self-sustaining federal-government agency, exists to fill gaps in export financing, strengthen U.S. export competitiveness, and create and maintain U.S. jobs. The Bank provides a variety of financing mechanisms, including working capital guarantees to help small and medium-sized U.S. businesses, export-credit insurance to protect against nonpayment by foreign buyers, and loan guarantees and direct loans to assist foreign buyers of U.S. goods and services.

In fiscal 2009, overall Ex-Im Bank financing totaled $21 billion, and authorizations supporting small-business exports reached a historic high of $4.4 billion, nearly 21 percent of total authorizations. Ex-Im Bank authorized $412 million, including working capital guarantees, for U.S. exports to sub-Saharan Africa in fiscal 2009.

In the first eight months of fiscal 2010 (through April 2010), Ex-Im Bank authorized $14.7 billion in loans, guarantees and insurance – 70 percent of the total amount authorized in fiscal 2009. For more information, see Ex-Im Bank’s Web site at www.exim.gov.

Aloy Ejimakor
Aloy Ejimakor

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