Tuesday, February 19, 2012
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
Fact Sheet: National Export Initiative
[Note: This Fact Sheet was updated May 24, 2013 ]
To strengthen America’s economy, support additional jobs here at home, and ensure long-term, sustainable growth, President Obama launched a government-wide strategy to promote exports. The National Export Initiative (NEI) is one essential component of that strategy.
The Obama administration has made it a top priority to improve the conditions that directly affect the private sector’s ability to export, working to remove trade barriers abroad, help firms and farmers overcome hurdles to entering new markets, and assist with financing. In addition, we have renewed and revitalized our efforts to promote American exports abroad.
These efforts are paying off–and helping to change the way America does business. Now more than at any time in our history, Americans are selling more U.S. goods and services to the 95 percent of consumers who live outside of our borders.
We are making historic progress toward the president’s goal of doubling exports by the end of 2014. In 2012, U.S. exports hit an all-time record of $2.2 trillion. Particular success stories included the growth of exports to America’s free trade agreement partners, record exports for the motor vehicle industry and agricultural products, and a robust travel and tourism sector. Significant export growth since 2009 has contributed to America creating 6.1 million private sector jobs over the past 35 months.
There is still more work to do. U.S. businesses faced economic headwinds from Europe and other parts of the globe in 2012. That is why the Obama administration continues to do everything possible to support American farmers, workers, and businesses as they compete in the global marketplace.
EXPORTS MATTER: The World Wants What America Makes
- U.S. exports set another record in 2012, reaching $2.2 trillion despite significant economic headwinds from abroad.
- Growth in exports of goods and services outpaced the growth of imports of goods and services in both dollar and percentage terms for the first time since 2007, with exports growing by $92.6 billion or 4.4 percent.
- Exports as a share of U.S. GDP were 13.9 percent in 2012, tying the record set in 2011.
- The U.S. also saw record levels of merchandise exports to more than 70 countries.
- The growth in exports came despite a slowdown in the world economy and in world trade volumes.
Administration Efforts: A Commitment to U.S. Companies
- The administration will continue to support U.S.
companies in selling their goods and services abroad by helping to create opportunities
and to level the playing field. Ongoing efforts include:
- Continuing to build our trade advocacy and export promotion efforts;
- Promoting the availability of export financing;
- Educating U.S. companies about markets opened by our free trade agreements, including those that went into effect in 2012;
- Concluding new trade agreements to address existing and newly emerging obstacles to U.S. exports in markets of opportunity;
- Enforcing U.S. trade rights under international agreements; and
- Aggressively investigating unfair trade practices affecting U.S. exports or imports into the U.S. market.
EXPORT SUCCESSES: SECTOR SPOTLIGHTS
- Exports are boosting the U.S. manufacturing sector. Manufactured goods exports increased by 47 percent between 2009-2012, reaching a record $1.35 trillion for 2012.
- The manufacturing sector has added roughly half a million jobs over the last three years, the most for any such period since 1996.
- U.S. exports of civilian aircraft are up by more than one-third in 2012 from 2011. This sector remains a strong area for export growth to emerging markets in Asia and the Middle East, and is a continued bright spot for U.S. exports in the European markets
- Motor Vehicles and Parts:
- After a full recovery from the recession, the U.S. automotive industry has continued to be a strong area of growth for U.S. exports. Automotive vehicle and parts exports were up by more than 10 percent in 2012, compared to 2011.
- U.S. exports of motor vehicles and parts totaled $132.7 billion in 2012, an increase of nearly 80 percent from the $74.2 billion of these goods exported in 2009.
President Obama took office, the American auto industry was shedding jobs
by the hundreds of thousands, and GM and Chrysler faced the possibility
of liquidation – which would have caused at least one million additional
jobs to be lost. The President made the tough choice to help provide the
auto industry the temporary support it needed to grow and prosper.
- The United States remains the largest exporter of private commercial services in the world.
- In 2012, U.S. services exports totaled $632.3 billion, up 4.4 percent from 2011. With U.S. services imports growing at only 2.2 percent, the trade surplus in services grew by $16.8 billion, leading to an overall reduction in the U.S. trade deficit from last year.
- Expanding America’s services industry through trade is a smart effort, because three out of four American jobs are already in the services sector, and in 2011 (latest data available) every additional $1 billion in U.S. services exports supported an estimated 4,200 additional American jobs.
- As part of the effort to grow services exports, the U.S. Trade Representative recently notified Congress that the Administration intends to enter into negotiations for a new trade agreement aimed at promoting international trade in services.
Travel and Tourism
- Travel and tourism is our largest category of services exports. In 2012, more than 66 million international tourists visited the United States, generating an all-time record of $168 billion in revenue – an increase of 10 percent from 2011.
- In 2012, travel and tourism accounted for 8 percent of all U.S. exports and 27 percent of all service-exports.
- International travel and tourism also helped contribute to the record surplus the U.S. holds in services exports, which hit $195.3 billion in 2012.
- This sector’s economic potential continues to grow. That is why the president announced new initiatives in 2012 to attract and welcome international visitors to the United States.
- The National Travel and Tourism Strategy is a blueprint for expanding travel to and within the United States, setting the goal of attracting more than 100 million international visitors annually by 2021. These international visitors are projected to spend an estimated $250 billion per year, creating jobs and spurring economic growth in communities across the country.
- In 2012, agricultural exports reached a record $145.4 billion–an increase of 38 percent from 2011, helping to support more than one million jobs on and off the farm. This increase was achieved while farmers weathered the worst drought in decades.
- The agricultural trade surplus in 2012 also reached a record of $38.1 billion.
- China became the largest market for U.S. agricultural exports in 2012 at $26 billion, a 38 percent increase over last year backed by strong sales of soybeans, cotton, and corn. U.S. agricultural exports to China were just $8.3 billion in 2007.
- In 2012, agricultural exports to Canada and Mexico also reached a record $39.5 and comprised 28 percent of all agricultural exports.
- The primary driver of U.S. agricultural exports in 2012 was soybeans. U.S. exports of soybeans increased from $17.6 billion in 2011 to $24.7 billion–a 41 percent increase. Export volume also increased significantly by 27 percent in 2012, as U.S. soybean producers capitalized on weaker South American competition, strong Chinese demand, and higher prices.
EXPORT SUCCESSES: COUNTRY AND REGION SPOTLIGHTS
- The United States reached record levels of exports for 2012 with more than 70 trading partners, including major emerging markets and 11 free trade agreement (FTA) partners (Australia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Jordan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Oman, Panama, and Peru).
- U.S. merchandise exports to Canada and Mexico achieved record levels in 2012.
- The United States achieved record levels of exports in 2012 to the major emerging markets of Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa. In fact, despite lagging growth in these countries, exports to Brazil, India, China, and South Africa have grown by 58 percent (or $68 billion) since 2009.
- China has accounted for about 10 percent of our total export increase this year. In fact, for the second year in a row, exports to China passed the $100 billion mark, totaling $110.6 billion, a 59 percent increase from 2009.
- U.S. goods exports to Russia reached record levels in 2012.
- Major sectors for U.S. export growth to Russia in 2012 included aircraft, motor vehicles and parts, and bovine animals.
- U.S. trade to and from sub-Saharan Africa has tripled over the past decade.
- The International Monetary Fund has estimated growth in sub-Saharan Africa to be 5.8 percent in 2013 5.7 percent in 2014.
- That’s why in June 2012, the President issued the U.S. Strategy Toward Sub-Saharan Africa, committing the United States to elevate our efforts to spur economic growth, trade, and investment in sub-Saharan Africa.
- The Administration launched the Doing Business in Africa (DBIA) Campaign in November 2012 to support the President’s vision and help U.S. businesses and farmers take advantage of the many export and investment opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa. The DBIA Campaign reflects an unprecedented, whole-of-government approach to increase the level of U.S. trade promotion to the region and expand the availability of trade financing for U.S.-Africa trade.
Free Trade Agreement Partners
In 2012, the United States entered into trade agreements with three new partner countries: Colombia, Panama, and South Korea after concerted efforts to ensure the agreements better serve American workers and businesses and better reflect American values. As a result, the United States now has Free Trade Agreements in effect with 20 countries, and these agreements helped to bolster U.S. exports throughout 2012.
- Exports to these 20 countries represented nearly half of all U.S. goods exports in 2012.
- In 2012, U.S. goods exports to FTA partners grew nearly twice as fast as exports to the rest of the world.
- The United States-Korea trade agreement, in force as of March 15, 2012, provides significant new access for exports of U.S. goods and services to Korea’s $1 trillion economy. Once fully implemented, it is estimated that this agreement will support at least 70,000 American jobs.
- The trade agreement with South Korea sought to level the playing field for U.S. exports by ensuring the reduction of South Korean tariffs on machinery and equipment exports – once more than twice as high as our own – and opening its $530 billion services market.
- U.S. exports of machinery and other capital goods to Korea have grown tremendously, which includes exports of aerospace products and parts, semiconductors, industrial machinery, pharmaceuticals and medicines, motor vehicles, and other general purpose machinery.
- The trade agreement with Colombia, in force as of May 15, 2012, is providing new access for U.S. exports to the third-largest economy in Central and South America, and one of our most important strategic partners. Once the agreement is fully implemented, it is estimated that it will support thousands of additional American jobs.
- In 2012, U.S. goods exports to Colombia reached record levels.
- Export growth to Colombia was led by increases in exports of petroleum and coal products, aerospace products and parts, communications equipment, and architectural and structural metal products.
- In addition, the new trade agreement with Panama, in force as of October 31, 2012, is providing access to one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America.
- In 2012, U.S. goods exports to Panama also reached record levels.
- Export growth to Panama was led by increases in exports of petroleum and coal products, communications equipment, agricultural and construction machinery, and computer equipment.
EXPORT SUCCESSES AT THE SMALL BUSINESS AND LOCAL LEVEL
- Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have played a critical role in driving record export growth.
- A record 287,000 U.S. SMEs exported goods in 2010, accounting for 98 percent of all identified exporters and helping demonstrate the export potential of small businesses.
- The Administration has focused its efforts on increasing the number of U.S. SME exporters and making it easier for them to access federal export assistance. We’re working to accomplish this by expanding access to small business trade financing and ensuring the most efficient delivery of services to small businesses.
- The Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank helped more than 3,300 small businesses expand their export sales in 2012. More than 650 small businesses worked with the Ex-Im Bank for the first time in 2012, and Ex-Im authorized a record amount in export financing for small businesses: 6.1 billion. Ex-Im estimates 85 percent of Bank transactions benefit small businesses.
- From the launch of the NEI through 2012, the Small Business Administration (SBA) backed more than 2,400 loans to 3,500 small businesses through its financing programs, supporting a combined $3.4 billion in small business sales during that period.
- All federal agencies involved in export financing collaborate to ensure small businesses experience a no-wrong-door approach and easily receive information about the financing that fits their needs.
- The Obama administration is committed to ensuring that SME exporters are aware of export opportunities and federal resources that are readily available to help them increase exports, establish a foothold abroad, diversify their markets, and support additional good-paying American jobs.
States and Metropolitan Areas
- The continued growth of exports from cities and communities across the country are supporting additional American jobs and helping grow our economy.
- Cities across the United States play a critical role in fueling national export growth. Exports from U.S. metropolitan areas make up 88 percent of the U.S. total merchandise exports.
- Metropolitan area exports increased nearly 40 percent since 2009 to total $1.31 trillion in 2011.
- Eleven metropolitan areas exported merchandise worth more than $25 billion in merchandise in 2011. One hundred and fifty U.S. metropolitan areas exported more than $1 billion in merchandise in 2011.
- The U.S. Government is leveraging its interagency field network and partners, such as the Brookings Institution's Metropolitan Export Initiative, to ensure cities and states have the tools they need to incorporate local export promotion into their economic development and long-term planning.
- Note: Specific
data for states and metropolitan areas can be accessed at: http://www.trade.gov/mas/ian/statereports/  and http://www.trade.gov/mas/ian/metroreport/ .
MAKING A DIFFERENCE
- Export Counseling: Since the launch of the NEI in January 2010, the Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration (ITA) has helped more than 16,000 U.S. companies achieve a verified export sale for a total of $164 billion in exports supported. Within that period, ITA’s assistance supported an estimated 217,800 jobs in 2010, and 429,260 jobs in 2011 (the data required to produce jobs supported numbers for 2012 does not yet exist). In 2012 alone, 2,718 American companies working with ITA’s U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service–including more than 2,300 small- and medium-sized enterprises–were able to export for the first time or increase their exports by selling to new markets. The Commercial Service, ITA’s trade promotion arm, works in more than 70 countries to connect U.S. businesses with buyers overseas. Through “Partnership Posts” the Commercial Service supports Department of State economic officers to provide similar services in an additional 577 countries.
- Advocacy Center: The Commerce Department’s Advocacy Center serves to level the playing field on behalf of U.S. companies competing for international government contracts. From 2010 through 2012, the Advocacy Center coordinated an interagency group in support of the National Export Initiative to assist hundreds of businesses win foreign government contracts totaling approximately $112 billion in U.S export content. In 2012, advocacy wins totaled approximately $36.6 billion in U.S. export content, almost double the amount in 2010. By instituting an aggressive new client outreach program, the Advocacy Center has nearly doubled the number of active cases from 326 on January 1, 2010, to 657 at the end of 2012, operating at an all-time record level. Agencies throughout the federal government are coordinated and engaged in the Advocacy effort–for example, the Department of State assisted with more than $2.5 billion worth of deals in the fourth quarter of 2012 alone.
- Export Financing: Ex-Im Bank provides financing for U.S. businesses and their customers in foreign markets where the private sector is not readily willing or able to provide financing. During fiscal year 2012, Ex-Im supported about 255,000 U.S. jobs and reported a fourth-straight record-breaking year with $35.7 billion in authorizations and more than $50 billion in sales supported. During the past four years, Ex-Im has supported nearly 1 million jobs, all at no cost to the American taxpayer.
- Financing for SMEs: Since the launch of the NEI, SBA has trained 273 Small Business Development Center (SBDC) counselors across the country to counsel small businesses new to exporting. An additional 136 SBDC counselors have achieved advanced Certified Global Business Professional accreditation. SBA also has trained more than 11,000 loan officers in SBA’s export financing programs; significantly increased the number of commercial lenders active in its Export Working Capital, International Trade Loan and Export Express programs; and provided financing to more than 3,500 small business exporters.
- Export growth from U.S. investments: When American companies establish a direct physical presence overseas, U.S. exports often follow that investment. The Overseas Private Investment Corporation has assisted in this process, and OPIC-supported projects have resulted in more than $2.1 billion in U.S. exports to developing countries from fiscal years 2010 to 2012.
- Global Business Solutions: In an effort to ensure there is no wrong door within the federal government to help SME exporters, the Export-Import Bank, SBA, Foreign Agricultural Service, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation are collaborating to create U.S. government financing packages to meet the need of exporters and lenders alike.
- Opening the World to U.S. Businesses: Since the launch of the NEI, the Department of Commerce has coordinated 135 trade missions to 55 countries with more than 1,463 companies participating. These companies have secured more than $22 billion so far in export sales as a direct result of these trade missions. From 2010 through 2012, USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service has led 164 agribusinesses on Agribusiness Trade Missions, resulting in $38 million in sales, though numerous other negotiations remain ongoing.
Foreign Buyers to the United States:
- Since the launch of the NEI, the ITA’s International Buyer Program has recruited over 38,000 foreign buyers to visit major U.S. trade shows and directly connect with U.S. companies. The amount generated by export successes attributed to this program totals more than $2.3 billion so far.
- The U.S. government also has brought foreign buyers to the United States through reverse trade missions, allowing buyers to observe the design, manufacture, and operation of U.S. equipment and services. The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has consistently increased its investment in reverse trade missions, supporting 79 missions that connected more than 450 foreign buyers with 3,400 U.S. company representatives in fiscal year 2012 alone.
Markets through Trade Agreements: The Office of the U.S. Trade
Representative has negotiated, put into effect, and enforced trade
agreements, eliminating or reducing other countries’ tariffs and other
trade barriers, making it easier for American businesses of all sizes to
export, supporting additional high-paying jobs, and helping to grow the
- The United States has negotiated and put into effect free trade agreements with 20 different countries. The United States is working with its FTA partners to monitor the operation and implementation of these agreements, which provide improved market access opportunities for U.S. exporters.
- The United States, working with other World Trade Organization (WTO) Members, successfully concluded negotiations on the terms of Russia’s membership in the WTO, and after nearly two decades of effort, Russia became a WTO member on August 22, 2012. On December 14, 2012, President Obama signed legislation–which the U.S. Congress had approved overwhelmingly–terminating the application of the Jackson-Vanik amendment and authorizing extension of permanent normal trade relations to Russia. As of December 21, 2012, the WTO agreement applies between the United States and Russia: American businesses and workers now will be able to benefit from improved market access for U.S. exports of goods and services, and Russia is now a party to the system of established, enforceable, multilateral trade rules.
- The United States is negotiating with Asia-Pacific nations an ambitious, state-of-the-art Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement that will create significant new opportunities to increase U.S. exports that support higher-paying jobs in the United States. The Asia-Pacific region includes some of the world’s most-dynamic economies and is already a key destination for U.S. manufactured goods, agricultural products, and services accounting in 2012 for more than 60 percent of U.S. goods exports and nearly three-quarters of U.S. total agricultural exports.
- Canada and Mexico’s October 2012 entry into the TPP negotiations will generate even further opportunities for U.S. export growth, allow U.S. companies to leverage their existing North American supply chains by exporting goods to other TPP countries, and help fulfill President Obama’s pledge to improve NAFTA.
- The Obama administration reached a landmark agreement by Leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC) on a commercially and environmentally meaningful APEC List of Environmental Goods, on which APEC economies will cut tariffs to 5 percent or less by 2015. This marks the first time that trade negotiations have produced a list of environmental goods for tariff cuts. More than $1 billion in U.S. exports of these goods currently face tariffs above five percent in the Asia-Pacific region; thus, the tariff cuts on these products will contribute significantly to the Obama Administration’s goal to double exports by the end of 2014.
- Interagency Trade Enforcement Center: In February 2012, President Obama signed an Executive Order creating a new Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC) to enhance the administration’s ability to aggressively challenge other countries’ unfair trade practices that affect U.S. exports, as well as imports into the United States.
- Enforcement: Through vigorous enforcement of our
rights under trade agreements, the Administration has ensured that more
Americans saw the benefits promised by those pacts. Such vigorous enforcement helps American
farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, and service providers remain globally
competitive even in today’s difficult economic environment. The United States has been very active
in pursuing enforcement of our trade rights under various agreements
affecting a variety of sectors and industries. Specific enforcement wins and initiatives include:
- Winning at the WTO against EU subsidies to Airbus, and initiating compliance proceedings due to the EU’s failure to comply to date. EU compliance would result in more opportunities for U.S. workers and let our aircraft manufacturers compete on a more level playing field.
- Challenging various trade restrictive measures applied by Argentina to all goods imports, including the broad use of non-transparent import licensing requirements that have the effect of unfairly restricting U.S. exports. This dispute will protect the rights of American companies and their workers to sell their products without such burdensome restrictions.
- Prevailing, in February 2012, in a challenge to China’s export restraints on raw material inputs for the steel, aluminum, and chemicals sectors and initiating a follow-on challenge in March 2012 to China’s export restraints on rare earths, tungsten, and molybdenum–key inputs for the clean energy and other industrial sectors. Both of these disputes assert the rights of American manufacturers and workers to a level playing field with regard to the market for the downstream products at issue.
- Winning a WTO challenge in August 2012 against Chinese restrictions and requirements pertaining to electronic payment services (EPS) for payment card transactions and the suppliers of those services that discriminate against U.S. EPS suppliers. The outcome confirms American credit and debit card companies’ right to fair access to China’s market for EPS.
- Initiating, in September 2012, a WTO dispute challenging an export subsidies program that appears to provide extensive export-contingent subsidies to auto and auto parts enterprises in China that severely distort markets. This dispute will protect the right of U.S. auto and auto parts companies and U.S. workers to compete on a more level playing field.
- Launching a WTO dispute, in February 2013, challenging requirements under India’s national solar policy that prevent companies in India from using American solar equipment. This dispute will give American workers and manufacturers an equal opportunity to sell their high-quality products in India’s booming solar market.
- Investing in Infrastructure: The U.S. Department of Transportation is making it easier for American companies to export goods and services to consumers around the globe through its TIGER–Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery–competitive general infrastructure grant program. Through four rounds of TIGER grants, the administration has invested $953 million in U.S. freight transportation infrastructure. TIGER grant awards have gone to 50 freight-related projects on significant freight corridors, including rail, port and highway projects. More than a third of that funding – $354 million–went to 25 U.S. port projects from coast to coast. These freight-related projects will help speed delivery of products from American factories, farms, and businesses to customers across the United States and around the world. The Department of State also hosted an Infrastructure Best Practices Exchange with the five countries participating in the Lower Mekong Initiative (Burma, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos). This two-day event brought together eight U.S. government agencies, representatives from the five regional governments, and nearly 100 private sector business representatives to ensure U.S. firms can engage effectively in infrastructure development in these markets with significant growth potential.
- Assistance to Minority Businesses: The Commerce Department’s Minority Business Development Agency has a long history of promoting the growth and competitiveness of minority-owned enterprises, which are twice as likely to export than non-minority owned firms. Through its network of 40 centers across the country, MBDA is engaging businesses in minority communities to leverage their cultural and ancestral ties in order to start or continue exporting.
- Export.gov: In January 2013, the International Trade Administration began previewing New.Export.Gov, which streamlines assistance, matching information to an exporters needs. At New.Export.Gov, exporters can join communities of trade experts and exporters to get the latest information, create their own profiles, and get quick answers to their questions, among other enhanced services. For general business assistance, U.S. companies can visit www.BusinessUSA.gov .
Fact Sheet Updated 2/08/13