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House Sets Vote on the BUILD Act - the Administration's Proposal to Bolster Development Finance


September 25, 2018

WASHINGTON – Ray W. Washburne, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. Government’s development finance institution (DFI), issued the following statement as the U.S. House of Representatives prepares to consider the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development (BUILD) Act of 2018:

“By creating a modern U.S. development finance institution, this legislation will better equip the United States to address the world’s massive development needs and drive economic growth in emerging markets, while also advancing American foreign policy and competitiveness.

 

“At a time when China is investing heavily in emerging markets under a state-directed model, the U.S. model offers an alternative for advancing development in a manner that is financially sound, adheres to high standards and avoids debt traps.

 

The White House has announced its support for the BUILD Act, which mirrors the Office of Management and Budget’s “Reform Plan and Reorganization Recommendations.”

In July, the BUILD Act passed the House of Representatives as a standalone piece of legislation (H.R. 5015) by voice-vote. The BUILD Act has since been incorporated into H.R. 302, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, which is scheduled to be considered in the House tomorrow, September 26, 2018.

The BUILD Act was introduced by Congressmen Ted Yoho and Adam Smith and Senators Bob Corker and Chris Coons in February. A Senate version of the legislation was passed out of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in June.

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The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) is a self-sustaining U.S. Government agency that helps American businesses invest in emerging markets. Established in 1971, OPIC provides businesses with the tools to manage the risks associated with foreign direct investment, fosters economic development in emerging market countries, and advances U.S. foreign policy and national security priorities. OPIC helps American businesses gain footholds in new markets, catalyzes new revenues and contributes to jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC fulfills its mission by providing businesses with financing, political risk insurance, advocacy and by partnering with private equity fund managers.

OPIC services are available to new and expanding businesses planning to invest in more than 160 countries worldwide. Because OPIC charges market-based fees for its products, it operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to taxpayers. All OPIC projects must adhere to best international practices and cannot cause job loss in the United States.