Louisiana Trade Facts

  • In 2018, Louisiana exported a record $66.2 billion of Made-in-America goods to the world. In 2016, exports from Louisiana supported an estimated 129 thousand jobs.

Exports from Louisiana and Jobs

  • Louisiana was the 5th largest state exporter of goods in 2018.
  • In 2018, Louisiana goods exports were $66.2 billion, an increase of 58 percent ($24 billion) from its export level in 2008.
  • Goods exports accounted for 23.1 percent of Louisiana GDP in 2017.
  • Louisiana goods exports in 2016 (latest year available) supported an estimated 129 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 Louisiana and Jobs

  • In 2018, Louisiana exported $40.8 billion of manufactured products.
  • Louisiana exports of manufactured products supported an estimated 115 thousand jobs in 2016.
  • The state's largest manufacturing export category is petroleum & coal products, which accounted for $22.7 billion of Louisiana's total goods exports in 2018.
  • Other top manufacturing exports are chemicals ($10.7 billion), food & kindred products ($4.0 billion), machinery, except electrical ($800 million), and transportation equipment ($488 million).

Exports Sustain Thousands of Louisiana Businesses many of which are SMEs

  • A total of 3,588 companies exported from Louisiana locations in 2016 (latest year available). Of those, 3,034 (85 percent) were small and medium sized enterprises with fewer than 500 employees.
  • Small and medium-sized firms generated 34.8 percent of Louisiana's total exports of goods in 2016.

Louisiana Depends on World Markets

  • The state’s largest market was Mexico. Louisiana exported $8.8 billion in goods to Mexico in 2018, representing 13 percent of the state’s total goods exports.
  • Mexico was followed by South Korea ($3.8 billion), Netherlands ($3.6 billion), Brazil ($3.6 billion), and Canada ($3.5 billion).
  • Louisiana’s exports (2018 value) to major world areas included:


2018 Value


$28.5 billion


$18.7 billion

European Union

$11.1 billion

South/Central America and Caribbean

$19.1 billion

Sub-Saharan Africa

$1.0 billion

  • 43 percent of Louisiana’s exports ($28.4 billion) go to current FTA partners. 

Agriculture in Louisiana depends on Exports

  • Louisiana is the country’s 29th largest agricultural exporting state, shipping $1.5 billion in domestic agricultural exports abroad in 2017 (latest data available according to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.)[1]
  • Top Agricultural exports (2017 Value) were:


2017 Value

 2017 State Rank


$341 million


other plant products

$291 million



$219 million


other livestock products

$124 million



$105 million



International Investment Creates Jobs in Louisiana

  • In 2015 (latest data available), foreign-controlled companies employed 67,700 Louisiana workers. Major sources of foreign investment in Louisiana included the United Kingdom, France and Canada.
  • Foreign investment in Louisiana was responsible for 4.0 percent of the state's total private-industry employment in 2015.

Louisiana’s Major Metropolitan Areas Benefit from Exporting

  • In 2017 (latest data available), the following metropolitan areas in Louisiana recorded goods exports: New Orleans ($31.6 billion), Baton Rouge ($8.8 billion), Lake Charles ($6.6 billion), Lafayette ($954.8 million), Shreveport ($502.9 million), Houma ($287.4 million), Monroe ($123.5 million), Hammond ($58.8 million), Alexandria ($19.8 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.