The United States has a robust trade and investment relationship with the ten countries that comprise the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). These countries -- Brunei Darussalam, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam -- collectively the United States’ fourth-largest goods trading partner and together represent a market with a GDP of more than $3 trillion and a population of 667 million people. The United States and ASEAN meet regularly on trade and investment issues, including under our 2006 Trade and Investment Framework Agreement.
Economic and Trade Statistics
U.S. goods and services trade with ASEAN totaled an estimated $362.2 billion in 2020. Exports were $111.9 billion; imports were $250.3 billion. The U.S. goods and services trade deficit with ASEAN was $138.4 billion in 2020.
U.S. Goods trade (exports plus imports) with ASEAN totaled $307.7 billion in 2020. Goods exports totaled $76.4 billion; goods imports totaled $231.3 billion. The U.S. goods trade deficit with ASEAN was $154.9 billion in 2020.
Trade in services with ASEAN (exports and imports) totaled an estimated $54.5 billion in 2020. Services exports were $35.5 billion; services imports were $19.0 billion. The U.S. services trade surplus with ASEAN was $16.6 billion in 2020.
According to the Department of Commerce, U.S. exports of goods and services to ASEAN supported an estimated 656 thousand jobs in 2019 (latest data available) (358 thousand supported by goods exports and 299 thousand supported by services exports).
• U.S. goods exports to ASEAN in 2020 were $76.4 billion, down 11.2 percent ($9.7 billion) from 2019 but up 8 percent from 2010. U.S. exports to ASEAN account for 5.4 percent of overall U.S. exports in 2020.
• The top export markets in the region for 2020 were: Singapore ($26.9 billion), Malaysia ($12.3 billion), Thailand ($11.3 billion), Vietnam ($9.9 billion), and Philippines ($7.7. billion).
• The top export categories (2-digit HS) in 2020 were: electrical machinery ($15.0 billion), machinery ($9.2 billion), mineral fuels ($5.8 billion), optical and medical instruments ($5.2 billion), and aircraft ($5.2 billion).
• U.S. total exports (domestic exports plus re-exports) of agricultural products to ASEAN totaled $13.6 billion in 2020. Leading domestic export categories include: soybeans ($2.2 billion), cotton ($1.6 billion), wheat ($1.5 billion), dairy products ($1.3 billion), and soybean meal ($1.2 billion).
• U.S. exports of services to ASEAN were an estimated $35.5 billion in 2020, 13.2 percent ($5.4 billion) less than 2019, but 77 percent greater than 2010 levels. Leading services exports from the U.S. to ASEAN were in the research and development services, professional and management services, and intellectual property (licenses for the use of research and development) sectors.
• U.S. goods imports from ASEAN totaled $231.3 billion in 2020, up 12.3 percent ($25.4 billion) from 2019, and up 115 percent from 2010. U.S. imports from ASEAN account for 9.9 percent of overall U.S. imports in 2020.
• The top import markets in the region for 2020 were: Vietnam ($79.6 billion), Malaysia $44.1 billion), Thailand ($37.6 billion), Singapore ($30.8 billion), and Indonesia ($20.2 billion).
• The top import categories (2-digit HS) in 2020 were: electrical machinery ($72.9 billion), machinery ($29.9 billion), furniture and bedding ($15.0 billion), knit apparel ($12.3 billion), and rubber ($9.6 billion).
• U.S. total imports (general definition) of agricultural products from ASEAN totaled $12.6 billion in 2020. Leading categories include: sugars, sweeteners, beverages bases ($3.4 billion), vegetable oils ($1.8 billion), tree nuts ($1.3 billion), processed fruit and vegetables ($827 million), and rice ($725 million).
• U.S. imports of services from ASEAN were an estimated $19.0 billion in 2020, 20.5 percent ($4.9 billion) less than 2019, but 58 percent greater than 2010 levels. Leading services imports from ASEAN to the U.S. were in the professional and management services, research and development, and financial services sectors.
• The U.S. goods trade deficit with ASEAN was $154.9 billion in 2020, a 29.2 percent increase ($35.1 billion) over 2019.
• The United States has a services trade surplus of an estimated $16.6 billion with ASEAN in 2020, down 3.1 percent from 2019.
• U.S. foreign direct investment (FDI) in ASEAN (stock) was $328.5 billion in 2020, a 3.2 percent increase from 2019. U.S. direct investment in ASEAN is led by nonbank holding companies, manufacturing, and wholesale trade.
• ASEAN's FDI in the United States (stock) was $30.7 billion in 2020, up 3.2 percent from 2019. ASEAN's direct investment in the U.S. is led by manufacturing, wholesale trade, and depository institutions.
• Sales of services in ASEAN by majority U.S.-owned affiliates were $118.3 billion in 2018 (latest data available), while sales of services in the United States by majority ASEAN-owned firms were $43.5 billion.
NOTE: Services trade data includes all ASEAN countries except Burma (Myanmar), Cambodia, and Laos.