MN exports see sharp drop from last year

Sat 9-12-2020

ST. PAUL – Sales of agriculture, mining and manufacturing exports from Minnesota dropped 18% between the second quarters of 2019 and 2020 to $4.6 billion, according to a report released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). U.S. exports plunged by 30% during the same period.

Minnesota exports to North America, the European Union, and Central & South America were all down 24%, and exports to Asia also fell (down 6%). Exports sank by 30% or more to the Australia-Pacific area, the Middle East and Africa. However, isolated bright spots showed a surge in exports, including in Asia – Taiwan (up 56%), Malaysia (up 46%), Japan (up 3%), Thailand (up 7%) and Vietnam (up 21%) – and elsewhere: Slovakia (up 701%), and Algeria (up 166%).

Canada ($1 billion) and China ($648 million) were the state’s two largest export markets in the second quarter of 2020. Other market leaders were Japan ($427 million), Mexico ($355 million), Korea ($228 million), and Germany ($194 million).

There were widespread declines in major exports. Optics and medical exports continued to be the state’s top exported products ($903 million, down 22%). Other top exports were machinery ($733 million, down 21%), electrical equipment ($542 million, down 30%), and plastics ($329 million, down 6%). However, exports grew strongly for ores, slag and ash ($214 million, up 11%), mineral fuels and oils ($183 million, up 482%), and meat ($138 million, up 54%).