Overview

Voice of the Practitioner

The U.S. has a very high potential to export much more. Consider for example that the world, on average, exports 26.7% of GDP. Exports as a percentage of national GDP are 43.4% for Germany, 18.5% for China, yet only 10.1% for the United States.
Exports of Goods and Services (% of GDP), World Bank Data, https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NE.EXP.GNFS.ZS

Export sales are a critical regional economic development opportunity. Export sales of both products and services bring in additional revenue and value added to the region. Nationally, exports supported an estimated 10.7 million jobs with sales over $5.09 million, and exporters pay higher than average wage rates.

From the perspective of regional companies, most of the world market opportunity (over 95% of world GDP) is outside of the US, with the most rapid growth in emerging markets – driven in part by a growing middle class of consumers. Studies indicate exporters grow faster than non-exporters, and diversification into international markets has cushioned many companies from cyclical downturns.

Regional EDOs can take actions to assist companies to pursue international opportunities that benefit the region. There are an array of services that are available for exporters, and regional EDOs can connect exporters to these sources of support and fill in service gaps for the particular base of companies in their regions.