GE will open a new development facility for turboprop engines in Europe.


New York (AirGuideBusiness - Business & Industry Features) - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 Turning up the pressure on Congress to revive the US Export-Import Bank, General Electric said it will open a new development facility for turboprop engines in Europe because it cannot access US export financing. GE's move was the latest effort by a big company to raise the alarm in Washington about the closure of new financing by EXIM, so far with little evident impact on Congress. GE said the USD$400 million turboprop project would create 500 to 1,000 jobs, and will develop, test and produce engines for larger aircraft, a new market for GE Aviation. GE also said it will invest USD$55 million in Celma, Brazil, to build a new engine testing facility, and will spend USD$23 million on expanding its engine testing capability in Winnipeg, Canada. Several European locations are being considered for the turboprop facility, including in the Czech Republic, where GE now builds turboprop engines for small aircraft. Talks are underway with export credit agencies in those countries for financing and loan guarantees. GE stopped considering US locations for the new facility after Congress allowed EXIM's charter to expire on June 30, the result of a campaign by conservative Republicans against the bank, which they say exemplifies "corporate welfare." On Tuesday, GE announced plans to shift up to 500 US power turbine manufacturing jobs to Europe and China because it can no longer access EXIM financing. The warning shots, along with a visit by GE Chairman Jeff Immelt to Capitol Hill on Wednesday, thus far have not jolted Congress into action to revive EXIM. House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling and a vocal group of other conservative Republicans have blocked legislation to reapprove the 81-year-old bank. House Republicans said there...

To continue reading