Colorado Trade Facts

  • In 2018, Colorado exported $8.3 billion of Made-in-America goods to the world. In 2016, exports from Colorado supported an estimated 40 thousand jobs.

Exports from Colorado and Jobs

  • Colorado was the 33rd largest state exporter of goods in 2018.
  • In 2018, Colorado goods exports were $8.3 billion, an increase of 8 percent ($616 million) from its export level in 2008.
  • Goods exports accounted for 2.3 percent of Colorado GDP in 2018.
  • Colorado goods exports in 2016 (latest year available) supported an estimated 40 thousand jobs. Nationally, jobs supported by goods exports pay up to an estimated 18 percent above the national average.

Made-in-America Manufacturing Exports from Colorado and Jobs

  • In 2018, Colorado exported $7.8 billion of manufactured products.
  • Colorado exports of manufactured products supported an estimated 36 thousand jobs in 2016.
  • The state's largest manufacturing export category is computer & electronic products, which accounted for $1.9 billion of Colorado's total goods exports in 2018.
  • Other top manufacturing exports are food & kindred products ($1.7 billion), machinery, except electrical ($883 million), chemicals ($724 million), and miscellaneous manufactured commodities ($473 million).

Exports Sustain Thousands of Colorado Businesses many of which are SMEs

  • A total of 5,582 companies exported from Colorado locations in 2016 (latest year available). Of those, 4,857 (87 percent) were small and medium sized enterprises with fewer than 500 employees.
  • Small and medium-sized firms generated 28.1 percent of Colorado's total exports of goods in 2016.

Colorado Depends on World Markets

  • The state’s largest market was Canada. Colorado exported $1.4 billion in goods to Canada in 2018, representing 17 percent of the state’s total goods exports.
  • Canada was followed by Mexico ($1.3 billion), China ($577 million), Korea ($494 million), and Japan ($456 million).
  • Colorado’s exports (2018 values) to major world areas included:


2018 Value


$5.9 billion


$3.2 billion

European Union

$1.5 billion

South/Central America and Caribbean

$413 million

Sub-Saharan Africa

$51 million

  • 44 percent of Colorado’s exports ($3.7 billion) go to current FTA partners. 

Agriculture in Colorado depends on Exports

  • Colorado is the country’s 26th largest agricultural exporting state, shipping $1.7 billion in domestic agricultural exports abroad in 2017 (latest data available according to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture).1

  • Top Agricultural exports (2017 values) were:


2017 Value

 2017 State Rank

beef and veal

$372 million


other plant products

$319 million



$227 million


feeds and other feed grains

$152 million


dairy products

$107 million



International Investment Creates Jobs in Colorado

  • In 2015 (latest data available), foreign-controlled companies employed 107,400 Colorado workers. Major sources of foreign investment in Colorado included the United Kingdom, Canada and Germany.
  • Foreign investment in Colorado was responsible for 4.8 percent of the state's total private-industry employment in 2015.

Colorado’s Major Metropolitan Areas Benefit from Exporting

  • In 2017 (latest data available), the following metropolitan areas in Colorado recorded goods exports: Denver ($4 billion), Greeley ($1.5 billion), Fort Collins ($1 billion), Boulder ($1 billion), Colorado Springs ($819.7 million), Pueblo ($230.3 million), Grand Junction ($79.4 million).


1 Estimates of state exports of agricultural products by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture and goods exports by the U.S. Dept. of Commerce are based on different methodologies and are not directly comparable.