West Virginia

West Virginia Trade Facts​

  • In 2018, West Virginia exported $8.2 billion of Made-in-America goods to the world. In 2016, exports from West Virginia supported an estimated 26 thousand jobs.

Exports from West Virginia and Jobs

  • West Virginia was the 34th largest state exporter of goods in 2018.
  • In 2018, West Virginia goods exports were $8.2 billion, an increase of 46 percent ($2.6 billion) from its export level in 2008.
  • Goods exports accounted for 10.6 percent of West Virginia GDP in 2018.
  • West Virginia goods exports in 2016 (latest year available) supported an estimated 26 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 West Virginia and Jobs

  • In 2018, West Virginia exported $3.6 billion of manufactured products.
  • West Virginia exports of manufactured products supported an estimated 18 thousand jobs in 2016.
  • The state's largest manufacturing export category is chemicals, which accounted for $1.7 billion of West Virginia's total goods exports in 2018.
  • Other top manufacturing exports are transportation equipment ($748 million), primary metal manufacturing ($287 million), wood products ($145 million), and machinery, except electrical ($142 million).

Exports Sustain Thousands of West Virginia Businesses many of which are SMEs

  • A total of 1,047 companies exported from West Virginia locations in 2016 (latest year available). Of those, 805 (77 percent) were small and medium sized enterprises with fewer than 500 employees.
  • Small and medium-sized firms generated 29.5 percent of West Virginia's total exports of goods in 2016.

West Virginia Depends on World Markets

  • The state’s largest market was Canada. West Virginia exported $1.3 billion in goods to Canada in 2018, representing 16 percent of the state’s total goods exports.
  • Canada was followed by India ($1.1 billion), Netherlands ($675 million), Ukraine ($667 million), and Brazil ($493 million).
  • West Virginia’s exports (2018 value) to major world areas included:


2018 Value


$2.9 billion


$2.5 billion

European Union

$2.3 billion

South/Central America and Caribbean

$666 million

Sub-Saharan Africa

$26 million

  • 27 percent of West Virginia’s exports ($2.2 billion) go to current FTA partners.  

Agriculture in West Virginia depends on Exports

  • West Virginia is the country’s 46th largest agricultural exporting state, shipping $150 million 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

other plant products

$32 million


beef and veal

$21 million


other poultry products

$19 million


broiler meat

$19 million


other livestock products

$17 million



International Investment Creates Jobs in West Virginia

  • In 2015 (latest data available), foreign-controlled companies employed 28,900 West Virginia workers. Major sources of foreign investment in West Virginia included the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany and the Netherlands.
  • Foreign investment in West Virginia was responsible for 5.1 percent of the state's total private-industry employment in 2015.

West Virginia’s Major Metropolitan Areas Benefit from Exporting

  • In 2017 (latest data available), the following metropolitan areas in West Virginia recorded goods exports: Washington ($12.7 billion), Huntington ($1.1 billion), Parkersburg ($825.7 million), Charleston ($562.9 million), Wheeling ($480.4 million), Winchester ($279.8 million), Weirton ($175.8 million), Hagerstown ($120.1 million), Morgantown ($62.5 million), Cumberland ($40.2 million), Beckley ($32.8 million).


1Estimates 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.