The U.S. Commerce Department on Friday released data
showing in 2011 merchandise exports from 367 U.S. metropolitan areas reached $1.31 trillion, with the same types of exports from non-metropolitan or rural areas totaling an additional $174.9 billion.
In specific, 150 U.S. metropolitan areas (40.9 percent) exported more than $1 billion in merchandise internationally in 2011; and 11 of these metropolitan areas exported merchandise worth more than $25 billion, according to the department. Moreover, merchandise exports from these areas have increased nearly 40 percent since 2009.
“Cities large and small across this country have a vital role to play when it comes to fueling the growth of U.S. exports, and the numbers released… demonstrate that more exports from individual metropolitan areas are helping American businesses build things here and sell them everywhere to create jobs,” said Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank, in a statement.
A total of 308 metropolitan areas (83.9 percent of reported areas) recorded positive growth in exports between 2010 and 2011. Thirty-six major metropolitan areas expanded exports by $1 billion or more between 2010 and 2011.
The Commerce Department said among the top 25 metropolitan area exporters, merchandise exports increased by 17.4 percent between 2010 and 2011. The three largest metropolitan area exporters showed growth rates roughly at or above the national growth rate with exports since 2010 from New York (up 23.5 percent), Houston (up 29.6 percent) and Los Angeles (up 16.9 percent). “Much of the growth in these metropolitan areas was fueled by exports of transportation equipment, chemicals, computer and electronic products, petroleum and coal products, and primary metal manufacturing,” the department said.
New Orleans showed the highest growth in exports between 2010 and 2011 with exports increasing by 45.6 percent over this period. Other metropolitan areas that showed high growth in exports since 2010 included Salt Lake City, (up 45.3 percent) and Peoria, Ill. (up 36.7 percent).
“Consistent with national trade figures, metropolitan area exports were strongest to our North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico,” the Commerce Department said. “Detroit represented the largest metropolitan area exporter to Canada in 2011, with exports from Detroit, representing 7.4 percent of the total U.S. metropolitan area exports to Canada.”
Other major metropolitan area exporters to Canada in 2011 included Chicago, New York, Houston, and Los Angeles.
“U.S. metropolitan area trade with Mexico increased substantially in 2011, with metropolitan area exports to Mexico increasing by 21.6 percent between 2010 and 2011, compared to a growth rate of only 16.0 percent for U.S. metropolitan areas exports over this period. As with Canada, Detroit also ranked as the largest exporter to Mexico, representing 10 percent of U.S. metropolitan area exports to Mexico,” the department said.
“The largest metropolitan area exporters to Mexico are otherwise dominated by metropolitan areas that are geographically close to Mexico and that have fostered supply chain relationships with the country,” the department added. “Metropolitan areas in California (Los Angeles and San Diego) and Texas (Houston, El Paso, Dallas, Laredo, and Brownsville) are ranked among the top 10 metropolitan exporters to Mexico.”