Southeast states set export records

Staff Report
colanews@scbiznews.com
Published Feb. 26, 2014

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Six Southeastern states have set records for export sales in 2013, accounting for more than $200 billion worth of goods and services that the U.S. exported in 2013, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Record-setting states were Louisiana, $63.1 billion; Georgia $37.6 billion;

Tennessee, $32.4 billion; North Carolina, $29.3 billion; South Carolina, $26.1 billion; and Mississippi, $12.4 billion.

Total merchandise exports from the U.S. reached a record value of $2.3 trillion in 2013.

“These export numbers show that for more and more American companies, selling internationally is critical to growing their businesses and strengthening our economy,” U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker said. “We know for a fact, that for every $1 billion in exports nearly 5,000 jobs are supported across our nation, and with more than 95% of the world’s potential consumers residing outside our borders, exports will continue to be an important driver of the local and national economy.”

Growing exports helps strengthen the economic health of South Carolina, said S.C. Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt said.

“When firms are able to export their products to all corners of the world from right here in the Palmetto State, it allows them to expand, invest in the local economy and create more jobs,” Hitt said.

South Carolina’s export mark in 2013 was up nearly 4% over the previous year, and it was the third straight year South Carolina ranked first among U.S. states in tire exports, “a clear indication of the strength of our burgeoning tire industry, which now includes three of the top four global tire manufacturers,” Hitt said.

South Carolina’s merchandise export sales in 2013 outpaced the 2012 figures in many top destinations, including Turkey, up 116%; the Dominican Republic, up 66%; Chile, up 53%; China, up 50%; and Argentina, up 38%. Larger merchandise export categories include transportation equipment, machinery, chemicals, plastics and paper.

Here’s a look at the other record-setting Southeastern states, ranked by total export sales:

Louisiana, $63.1 billion
Largest market was China with $8.2 billion in sales, representing 13.1% of the state’s total exports; followed by Mexico, $6.3 billion; Canada, $3.1 billion; Japan, $2.8 billion; and the Netherlands, $2.8 billion. The state’s largest export category was petroleum and coal products, accounting for $25.5 billion of the state’s total exports.

Georgia, $37.6 billion
Largest market was Canada with $6.3 billion sales, representing 16.8% of Georgia’s total merchandise exports; followed by China, $3.7 billion; Mexico, $2.6 billion; United Kingdom, $1.5 billion; and Japan, $1.5 billion. The state’s largest export was transportation equipment at $9.8 billion.

Tennessee, $32.4 billion
Largest market was Canada with $8.7 billion in sales, representing 26.8% of total merchandise; followed by Mexico, $4.3 billion; China, $2.3 billion; Japan, $2 billion; and Belgium, $1.2 billion. The largest export category was transportation equipment at $6.7 billion.

North Carolina, $29.3 billion
Largest market was Canada with $6.7 billion in sales, representing 22.8% of the state’s total merchandise; followed by Mexico, $2.7 billion; China, $2.7 billion; Japan, $1.7 billion; and France, $1 billion. The state’s largest export category was chemicals, accounting for $5.5 billion in sales.

Mississippi, $12.4 billion
Largest market was Panama with $2.2 billion, representing 17.5% of sales; followed by Canada, $2 billion; Mexico, $1.3 billion, China $671 million, and the Netherlands, $483 million. The state’s largest export category was petroleum and coal products, accounting for $4.3 billion in sales.

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