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WASHINGTON, DC — In this week’s address, the President highlighted the progress made towards rebuilding our economy, including the creation of nearly 10 million new private sector jobs in the past 53 months and the rise in the number of American exports to an all-time high. That growth is in part thanks to the actions of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, an organization that creates American jobs by helping to take American businesses global. The charter of the Export-Import Bank is slated to expire next month, unless Members of Congress renew it, as has happened 16 times in the past with support from Democrats and Republicans. The President asked business owners and employees to reach out to their representatives, who are home this month, and let them know how important it is that the Export-Import Bank continue its work so that American businesses can continue to grow.
The audio of the address and video of the address will be available online at www.whitehouse.gov at 6:00 a.m. ET, August 23, 2014.
Video Remarks of President Barack Obama
The White House
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Hi, everybody. Nearly six years after the worst financial crisis of our lifetimes, our businesses have added nearly 10 million new jobs over the past 53 months. That’s the longest streak of private-sector job creation in our history. And we’re in a six-month streak with our economy creating at least 200,000 new jobs each month -- the first time that’s happened since 1997.
Thanks to the decisions we made to rescue and rebuild our economy, and your hard work and resilience, America is leading again. Areas like manufacturing, energy, technology, and autos are all booming. And here’s the thing: we’re selling more goods Made in America to the rest of the world than ever before. American exports are at an all-time high.
Over the past five years, we’ve worked hard to open new markets for our businesses, and to help them compete on a level playing field in those markets. And we’ve broken records for exports four years running. Last year, our exports supported more than 11 million American jobs – about 1.6 million more than when I took office. They’re good jobs that typically pay about 15% more than the national average. And more small businesses are selling their goods abroad than ever before -- nearly 300,000 last year alone.
We should be doing everything we can to accelerate this progress, not stall it.
One place to start is by supporting something called the U.S. Export-Import Bank. Its sole mission is to create American jobs. That’s it. It helps many American entrepreneurs take that next step and take their small business global. But next month, its charter will expire -- unless Members of Congress do their job and reauthorize it.
Now, past Congresses have done this 16 times, always with support from both parties. Republican and Democratic Presidents have supported the bank, too. This time around shouldn’t be any different. Because the bank works. It’s independent. It pays for itself. But if Congress fails to act, thousands of businesses, large and small, that sell their products abroad will take a completely unnecessary hit.
Small business owners have had to overcome a lot these past several years. We all saw local businesses close their doors during the crisis. And in the past few years, we’ve seen more and more open their doors and do their part to help lead America’s comeback. At the very least, they deserve a Congress that doesn’t stand in the way of their success.
Your members of Congress are home this month. If you’re a small business owner or employee of a large business that depends on financing to tackle new markets and create new jobs, tell them to quit treating your business like it’s expendable, and start treating it for what it is: vital to America’s success. Tell them to do their jobs -- keep America’s exports growing, and keep America’s recovery going.
Thanks, and have a great weekend.
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
EMBARGOED UNTIL 6:00 AM ET, SATURDAY, August 23, 2014
WHITE HOUSE VIDEO MESSAGE: The Export-Import Bank
WASHINGTON, DC —In this week’s address, Alejandra Castillo, Director of the Minority Business Development Association highlighted the progress made towards rebuilding our economy, including the creation of nearly 10 million new private sector jobs in the past 53 months and the rise in the number of American exports to an all-time high. That growth is in part thanks to the actions of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, an organization that creates American jobs by helping to take American businesses global.
The audio of the address and video of the message will be available online HERE.
Remarks of Alejandra Castillo
Spanish Weekly Address
The White House
August 23, 2014
The President spoke today with Chancellor Merkel of Germany regarding the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, which has continued to deteriorate since the tragic downing of the Malaysian airliner last month. The two leaders agreed that Russia sending a convoy into Ukraine without Ukraine’s approval is a further provocation and a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. They expressed concern that the large numbers of Russian troops on the border of Ukraine, the presence of Russian military personnel in Ukraine, and Russian shelling of Ukrainian territory represent a dangerous escalation. They agreed that it is imperative that Russia remove its convoy from Ukrainian territory, accept the conditions previously agreed to with Ukraine and the International Red Cross for any humanitarian convoys in Ukraine, and de-escalates the situation by removing its military forces from the border region, withdrawing its weapons, vehicles and personnel from the territory of Ukraine, and stopping the flow of Russian personnel, military equipment and armored vehicles into eastern Ukraine. They also stressed the importance of a bilateral ceasefire accompanied by closure of the border and effective border monitoring.
Today, in violation of its previous commitments and international law, Russian military vehicles painted to look like civilian trucks forced their way into Ukraine. While a small number of these vehicles were inspected by Ukrainian customs officials, most of the vehicles have not been inspected by anyone but Russia. We condemn this action by Russia, for which it will bear additional consequences.
The Ukrainian government and the international community have repeatedly made clear that this convoy would constitute a humanitarian mission only if expressly agreed to by the Ukrainian government and only if the aid was inspected, escorted and distributed by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). We can confirm that the ICRC is not escorting the vehicles and has no role in managing the mission, a condition that all parties had agreed would be required. Under the agreed terms, the mission should have been accomplished by sending a small number of inspected trucks in to drop their supplies and return to Russia within 24 hours by the same approved route by which they entered. That is not what is taking place. As we and governments around the world have said all along, Russia has no right to send vehicles, persons, or cargo of any kind into Ukraine, whether under the guise of humanitarian convoys or any other pretext, without the express permission of the government of Ukraine.
The primary barrier to the delivery of the humanitarian aid has been the lack of security guarantees from the Russia-backed separatists. Russian military vehicles piloted by Russian drivers have unilaterally entered the territory controlled by the separatist forces Russia has been training, supplying, and reinforcing for months. The Ukrainian humanitarian assistance convoy was prevented from delivering much needed assistance to Luhansk city.
At the same time as Russian vehicles violate Ukraine’s sovereignty, Russia maintains a sizable military force on the Ukrainian border capable of invading Ukraine on very short notice. It has repeatedly fired into Ukrainian territory, and has sent an ever-increasing stream of military equipment and fighters into Ukraine. As a result, the international community has been profoundly concerned that Russia’s actions today are nothing but a pretext for further Russian escalation of the conflict. We recall that Russia denied its military was occupying Crimea until it later admitted its military role and attempted to annex this part of Ukraine.
Russia’s decision today to send in its vehicles and personnel without the ICRC and without the express permission of the Ukrainian authorities only amplifies international concerns about Russia’s true intentions. It is important to remember that Russia is purporting to alleviate a humanitarian situation which Russia itself created – a situation that has caused the deaths of thousands, including 300 innocent passengers of flight MH17. If Russia really wants to ease the humanitarian situation in eastern Ukraine, it could do so today by halting its supply of weapons, equipment, and fighters to its proxies. This is a flagrant violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Russia. Russia must remove its vehicles and its personnel from the territory of Ukraine immediately.
Vice President Joe Biden spoke today with Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili about bilateral relations, Georgia’s deepening partnership with NATO, and Georgia’s efforts to attract foreign investment and grow its economy. The Vice President underscored his support for Georgia’s NATO membership aspirations as well as the United States’ steadfast commitment to Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. The two leaders agreed on the importance of pursuing reforms to strengthen rule of law in Georgia and attract greater foreign investment, including from the United States. The leaders also pledged to continue to stay in close touch regarding developments in Ukraine and elsewhere in the region.
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