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Export-Import Bank Fireside Chat Virtual Remarks

Secretary Dan Brouillette

Friday, September 11, 2020

Good afternoon, and thank you, Kim (Kimberly Reed, EXIM President & Chairman), for that kind introduction. 

I’d also like to thank you and your EXIM Bank team for hosting this event.

I’m honored to be here today to discuss with you how America’s energy exports are advancing our national security.

Plain and simple, energy security is national security.

Energy security requires abundant, affordable, and reliable supply.

But it also requires diversity of supply. 

It requires deployment of the widest possible range of available energy sources.

And I’m proud to say that under President Trump's leadership, this Administration fully supports energy diversity by deploying every fuel and technology at our disposal.

That includes oil and natural gas… 

…Civil nuclear power and renewables…

…And technologies that advance energy efficiency and carbon capture utilization and storage. 

This approach has made our country a world energy powerhouse.

America is now the world’s largest producer of oil and natural gas. 

We produce nearly 30 percent more natural gas than Russia and almost four times more than Iran.

We are also the number two producer of renewable power and the number one producer of nuclear power.

In stark contrast, many of our allies lack energy security precisely because they lack energy diversity. 

As a result, they remain beholden to near-monopolies for their energy supply. 

And that poses a clear and unambiguous danger to their national security.

This is especially true when their suppliers include nations like Russia, which wield their energy resources as geopolitical weapons of coercion.

And when their suppliers include countries like Iran, which use their energy revenues to fund terrorism and threaten global security and peace.

In the United States, we believe that energy resources should be used to advanced security and increase prosperity, not to coerce or to destabilize.

Combined with our enormous energy bounty, this philosophy means we’re not only a world energy exporter; we’re now using our exports to counter the influence of bad actors and strengthen the energy security and the national security of our energy partners wherever they may be found.

The implications are profound.

It means countries like Poland and Ukraine can reduce their dependence on Russia by importing American LNG.

The mere prospect of natural gas competition from America has forced Russian-owned Gazprom to offer steep price discounts with numerous nations. 

Besides exporting our energy resources and technologies, the United States has helped countries receive these exports by improving their infrastructure. 

For example, the Port of Sines in Portugal being open to diverse sources of energy is a priority.

Clearly, when the United States exports energy, it exports freedom… 

…Freedom from coercive energy suppliers and the non-competitive commercial terms they offer, and most of all, freedom for nations to chart their own energy, economic, and geopolitical course.

And with American energy exports comes something else as well:

Simply stated, when it comes to doing business, the United States is the partner of choice for reliability, transparency, the rule of law, and the sanctity of contracts.

As we expand our energy exports, we are encouraged by the historic bipartisan re-authorization of Export-Import Bank of the United States and by the prospect of working closely with Chairwoman Reed and her team.

This sends an unmistakable message that America is open for business.

EXIM provides expert knowledge of international markets and a tool kit that moves at the speed of business, while supporting our national security aims.

This unique combination of financial acumen and global vision is what makes EXIM a critical part of our Administration’s effort.

Yes, the COVID-19 pandemic has created uncertainty and turmoil in global markets, but make no mistake:

In this new era of American energy independence and dominance, President Trump, along with future leaders, can make policy decisions with hands untied and with America’s interests front and center, allowing us to project America’s power for good in the world.

And that is phenomenal news for us all.

Thank you again for inviting me to speak to you today.