Kansas exports totaled $12 billion in 2014 and saw significant gains in aviation and other key manufacturing sectors. In 2013, the state’s export total of $12.46 billion was the largest number posted since the Great Recession. While exports declined by 3.7 percent in 2014, the $12 billion total is the third highest annual export value in Kansas history.
Kansas manufacturers experienced an exceptional year for exports in 2014. Exports of aircraft and parts grew by $255 million (14 percent), while vehicles and parts grew by $122 million (39 percent) and electric machinery exports increased by $76 million (9 percent).
“Kansas exports topped $12 billion for only the third time in our state’s history,” said Kansas Commerce Secretary Pat George. “Our state experienced strong export growth in manufacturing and bioscience areas. The increase in aviation exports is particularly encouraging. After years of decline following the Great Recession, the general aviation market is improving, and Kansas’ great manufacturers are capitalizing on emerging opportunities.”
Significant gains in manufacturing and pharmaceuticals were offset by decreases in the value of agricultural exports. Oil seeds, cereals, raw hides, skins and leather, and food industry residues experienced the largest declines.
Kansas exporters outpaced their competition in neighboring states. In the five-state region that includes Kansas, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma, the average export value was $9.74 billion, which is $2.26 billion less than the Sunflower State.
Canada continues to be Kansas’ largest export market, accounting for $2.53 billion and 21 percent of total exports. Mexico passed China as Kansas’ second largest export market. Exports to Mexico grew by more than $250 million in 2014, an increase of 16.34 percent from the previous year.
The Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors has worked to increase Kansas exports through a statewide comprehensive plan, and the Kansas Department of Commerce has partnered with Kansas Global Trade Services to work with companies throughout the state to promote exporting.