Resource Center

Pennsylvania Trade Facts

  • In 2013, Pennsylvania goods exports were $41.2 billion, up 45 percent ($12.8) billion from 2009, and up 154 percent ($24.9 billion) from 2003 (according to the U.S. Dept of Commerce). Goods exports accounted for 6.4 percent of Pennsylvania GDP in 2013.  Pennsylvania was the 10th largest state exporter of goods in 2013.
  • In 2013, jobs supported by Pennsylvania’s goods exports are estimated to be 201 thousand. U.S. jobs supported by goods exports pay an estimated 13 to 18 percent higher than the national average wage.

Manufacturing Exports and Jobs

  • Pennsylvania’s manufacturing exports supported 19.0 percent of its total manufacturing employment in 2011 (latest year available).
  • Pennsylvania's exports of manufactured products were up by 143 percent between 2003 and 2013 (from $15.3 billion in 2003 to $37.2 billion in 2013).
  • The five largest manufacturing sectors in terms of Pennsylvania's exports were: Chemicals ($7.4 billion of exports in 2013), Machinery ($4.8 billion), Electronic Products ($3.9 billion), Transportation Equipment ($3.7 billion), and Primary Metal Manufacturing ($3.6 billion). These 5 sectors accounted for 63 percent of the state's total manufacturing exports.

Agriculture Exports

  • Pennsylvania is the country’s 27th largest agricultural exporting state, shipping $1.7 billion in agricultural exports abroad in 2012 (latest data available according to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture).[1]  The top agricultural export categories were dairy- -fifth largest state exporter ($289 million), soybeans ($182 million), pork ($97 million), processed vegetables - - 6thlargest state exporter ($131 million), and corn- - 17th largest state exporter ($96 million).  These five categories accounted for 46 percent of Pennsylvania’s agricultural exports in 2012. 

Export Markets

  • Pennsylvania state exports of goods to the 20 existing FTA countries totaled $19.3 billion in 2013, 47% of Pennsylvania’s total goods exports to the world. 
  • Canada is Pennsylvania’s largest export market with $11.7 billion or 28.5% of Pennsylvania’s total goods exports, followed by Mexico ($3.4 billion), China ($2.9 billion), the Netherlands ($2.4 billion), and Germany ($1.7 billion).
  • In 2013, Pennsylvania exported $24.6 billion to APEC, $9.3 billion to European Union, $8.8 billion to Asia, $3.7 billion to South/Central America and the Caribbean (excluding Mexico), and $673 million to Sub-Saharan Africa.

Small and Medium Sized Businesses

  • Over 13,900 Pennsylvania small and medium sized businesses exported in 2012(latest data available), accounting for 89.1 percent of exporting businesses from Pennsylvania and 34.7 percent of Pennsylvania's exports by value.

Foreign Investment and Jobs

  • In 2011 (latest year available), foreign-controlled companies employed 267,500 Pennsylvania workers. Major sources of foreign investment in Pennsylvania in 2011 included United Kingdom, Netherlands, Germany, and France.
  • Foreign investment in Pennsylvania was responsible for 5.3 percent of the state's total private-industry employment in 2011.

Major Metropolitan Areas Exports

  • In 2013, the following metropolitan areas in Pennsylvania recorded goods exports: Pittsburgh ($10.4 billion), Harrisburg-Carlisle ($3.0 billion), York-Hanover ($2.1 billion), Erie ($1.8 billion), Reading ($1.7 billion), Scranton-Wilkes-Barre-Hazleton ($1.3 billion), Lancaster ($1.1 billion), Chambersburg-Waynesboro ($604 million), Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington ($24.9 billion, portions of this MSA are shared with one or more other states), and Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton ($2.9 billion, portions of this MSA are shared with one or more other states).
  • [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.

    Updated September 2014