Pennsylvania exporters shipped out $34.8 billion in goods and services in 2010, indicating a big jump in the state’s economy.
Pennsylvania followed the national trend of increased exports, but posted especially impressive numbers, according to Tony Ceballos, Director of the U.S. Commerical Service Office in Philadelphia.
Ceballos says state’s top exports were chemicals, machinery, and metals – items used by other countries for production of their own goods.
Canada remained Pennsylvania’s top trading partner, accounting for almost a third of the state’s exports. However, exports to China also boomed, increasing 73% to eclipse Mexico as Pennsylvania’s second largest export market.
Ceballos says not only is the increase in exports a good indicator of economic health, but exporters also create good jobs.
“Exporters tend to hire more, they tend to pay their employees more and tend to have a higher rate of growth,” says Ceballos. "A lot of companies we work with have said that if it wasn't for exports, they would've had to lay off a lot of people and in some cases would've gone under."
Ceballos says the nation's exports increased 17% to $1.8 trillion, the largest yearly uptick in more than 20 years.