Georgia companies seeking to do business in Vietnam will not be able to look to the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) for financing, Maria Luisa Haley, a director of the bank,  said at a lecture sponsored by Georgia State University’s Institute of International Business June 23.

      “…Vietnam still causes a lot of angst among some of our legislators and they do not want to have to worry about doing something that the American people are not yet ready for,” she told the 50 attendees in response to a question at the public lecture held at the Georgia-Pacific Auditorium.

      “We’ve opened up the trade avenues with Vietnam but the question is, ‘Will the U.S. taxpayer pay for exports to Vietnam?’  Someday it will happen, but I cannot say when it will happen.”

      Meanwhile, Ex-Im has been lending heavily, she said, to companies doing business elsewhere in Asia with the most loans going for business to China, Indonesia and the Philippines, respectively.

      During the past five years, she said that Ex-Im Bank has financed $400 million in exports of goods and services from Georgia. The financing has supported 127 companies in 53 communities, and sustained, according to U.S. Department of Commerce estimates, 5,600 jobs throughout the state.

      During a tour of the state last week, Ms. Haley visited Ritz Instrument Transformers Inc., in Waynesboro, a maker of high-power electrical transformers, Telecom International Inc. in Norcross, a two-year-old maker of integrated satellite systems, and the Cordele plant of Harris Waste Management Group, a manufacturer of large recycling equipment.

      For more information, call Suzanne Keough, export finance manager at the Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism at (404) 657-1964; fax, (404) 657-1970.