Minnesota Exports up 29% in the Second Quarter
Exports surpass 2019 levels as global demand for Minnesota goods rebounds
September 8, 2021
St. Paul - Minnesota exports of agricultural, mining and manufactured products jumped 29% over the year to $6 billion in the second quarter of 2021, according to a report released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). State exports increased $1.3 billion over the second quarter of 2020, showing a strong recovery from pandemic disruptions last year. U.S. exports of goods increased 51% between the second quarters of 2020 and 2021, and all states had positive export growth during this period.
Compared to the pre-pandemic second quarter of 2019, the state’s exports were up 5%, which matched U.S. export growth of 5% for this period.
“Exports are trending in the right direction, showing the resiliency of Minnesota businesses. They’re working hard to recover from the significant hit their global sales took last year,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. “We are especially encouraged by the state’s growth in exports over the same quarter in 2019, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.”
“After months of disruptions and global uncertainty, we are thrilled to see the strong rebound in Minnesota exports,” said Gabrielle Gerbaud, Executive Director of the Minnesota Trade Office (MTO). “The MTO expanded its network of foreign offices from six to thirteen during the pandemic to further support the state’s export assistance and promotion efforts. In addition to North America, Europe and Asia, regions with new foreign offices include Africa, the Arabian Gulf and South America.”
Since the second quarter of 2020, the state’s export growth was led by North American markets (up 66%), European markets (up 33%) and Central and South American markets (up 30%). Exports to the state’s top three markets made strong gains, jumping 59% to Canada, 14% to China and 86% to Mexico. Sales to regional markets in North America and the European Union reached or exceeded their levels in 2019.
Many products continued to display signs of recovering export growth year over year. Exports of eight of the state’s top 10 products grew between the second quarters of 2020 and 2021. Six of these grew above their 2019 levels: machinery, electrical equipment, mineral fuels/oils, food by-products, meat and oil seeds/misc. grains. Machinery exports were propelled by sales to the Philippines, while electrical equipment sales surged to China, Canada, Mexico and Germany.
The Minnesota Trade Office (MTO) supports small- and medium-sized Minnesota businesses through technical assistance, export education and training programs, trade promotion activities, services by offices in strategic overseas locations, and export expansion grants. State STEP grants (50% matching up to $7,500) support a range of export development activities, including participation in virtual and in-person trade shows and missions. The MTO also serves as Minnesota's Office of Protocol, ensuring that the state's interactions with foreign delegations and dignitaries are conducted with appropriate diplomatic etiquette and cultural practices.
The full second quarter 2021 report is available on DEED's website in the Export and Trade Statistics section.
DEED is the state's principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more details about the agency and its services, visit the DEED website or follow us on Twitter.