Published Sept. 14, 2012
The Greenville metro area ranked No. 25 in export merchandise shipped in 2011, according to data released Thursday by the U.S. Commerce Department.
Exports from the Upstate climbed $3 billion to $11.7 billion in 2011, a 34.3% increase compared to 2010, the agency’s International Trade Administration reported.
Top MSA exportersTo read the full list, click here.
The Greenville metropolitan statistical area includes Mauldin and Easley.
In South Carolina, the Charleston area was the second-largest exporter. The value of Lowcountry exports increased $179 million to $2.3 billion in 2011, an 8.5% increase compared to the year prior, the trade agency said.
The Spartanburg area’s export total of $1.7 billion ranked No. 3 in South Carolina followed by Columbia, $1.5 billion; Florence, $814 million; Anderson, $572 million; Myrtle Beach, $219 million; and Sumter, $160 million.
Overall, S.C. exports in 2011 totaled $24.7 billion. Germany was the largest market receiving $4 billion, or 16.2% of the state’s total exports, followed by Canada, $3.7 billion; China, $3 billion; Mexico, $1.8 billion; and the United Kingdom, $1.4 billion.
Transportation equipment ranked as the largest export category, accounting for $8 billion of South Carolina’s total shipments. Other top categories were machinery, $3.6 billion; chemicals, $2.9 billion; plastics and rubber, $2.4 billion; and computers and electronics, $1.4 billion.
“These export numbers show that selling internationally has become a much more viable option for many S.C. businesses,” said Phil Minard, manager of the U.S. Commercial Service in Charleston. “In many cases, the Internet, ease of transportation, and array of available export services has reduced the distance between exporter and importer to a click on a desktop.”
The U.S. Commercial Service helps businesses identify export opportunities for their products and supports President Obama’s National Export Initiative, which aims to double U.S. exports by the end of 2014.