Monday, August 29, 2011

U.S. Exports to China Grew 4 Times Faster Than Exports to the Rest of the World from 2000 to 2010

We hear a lot about Chinese exports to the U.S., but we don't hear as much about U.S. exports to China.  Here are some facts from the U.S.-China Business Council:

China is the third largest export market for the United States ($92 billion in 2010), behind our NAFTA partners #1 Canada ($248 billion) and #2 Mexico ($163 billion), and head of #4 Japan ($60.5 billion) and #5 U.K. ($48.5 billion).  

Our top five exports to China in 2010 were: Computers and electronics ($15.3 billion), farm products ($13.8 billion), chemicals ($11.8 billion), transportation equipment ($10.6 billion) and machinery ($9.3 billion).  Except for farm production, the other top four export categories are all  American manufactured products with the "Made in the U.S.A." label. 

Over the last decade from 2000 to 2010, U.S. exports to China grew by 468%, which was more than 8 times the 55.7% growth in exports to the rest of the world (see chart above of indexes for both series that are equal to 100 in the year 2000).  On an annual basis, exports to China have been growing at an average rate of 19% over the last decade, more than four times faster than the 4.5% annual growth rate for exports to the rest of the world.  


At 8/29/2011 5:52 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

Like the Chinese say about the French Revolution, we will know a few centuries if it was a good idea.

So Nixon opening up China? We will know in a few more decades if it was a good idea.

I sense the tide is turning, and US exports to China will only grow from here on, as 1.5 billion Chinese eat and consumer more, but living standards rise there. Our living standards may not rise, and we are already a nation of fatsos.

In 20 years, the Chinese will pass by Japan, and the USA and India will offer the last low-cost manufacturing platforms to the world, except India will be too corrupt. Manufacturing is hopeless in Africa, of course, and South America is the Gong Show.

But there is a chance we will have bankrupted ourselves with wars, military and social spending, and our infrastructure will be so feeble that will not be able to take advantage of this possibility.

But maybe China will build out our infrastructure the way they do for Africa sometimes.

Southeast Asia will become another platform.

Learn to speak Thai or Mandarin.

At 8/29/2011 5:58 PM, Blogger Ironman said...

The growth is more impressive than you think. The key transition point was in July 2003, when the growth rate of U.S. exports finally overtook the growth rate of China's exports to the U.S.

But then, the trade between China and the U.S. can tell us quite a bit about the relative economic health of each nation. (The latest update is from two weeks ago....)

At 8/29/2011 7:03 PM, Blogger Junkyard_hawg1985 said...


Nice chart in the link.

At 8/29/2011 7:05 PM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

The Export deficit of the U.S. with China has grown from $84 billion in 2000 to $273 billion in 2010. The relative health of China has grown enormously in this ten year set, while the U.S....well, you know, not so great.

I'm glad to see an increase in U.S. Exports to China, BUT with the amount of U.S. currency the PRC holds, the U.S. should have steady trade surpluses for many years -- if the goal was simply trade.

At 8/29/2011 7:21 PM, Blogger Craig Howard said...

I sense the tide is turning, and US exports to China will only grow from here on, as 1.5 billion Chinese eat and consumer more, but living standards rise there.

If the Chinese government continues to inflate the Yuan, then you will be proved absolutely correct. It is monetary inflation that turns trade surpluses into deficits. As domestic prices and wages increase, foreign goods become more attractive and more affordable.

That is why the Germans are so ferociously resisting the ECB's desire to inflate away the PIIGS problem. Germany's export industry would shrivel and their long-awaited switchover to a consumptive economy would commence.

At 8/30/2011 12:58 PM, Blogger juandos said...

I think maybe another look ( for educational puposes) at trade and off-shoring with China has another side besides profits...

Consider the following from the Foreign Policy blog from back in January of this year: Prestowitz: Chinese goose and American gander

Posted By Clyde Prestowitz Wednesday, January 19, 2011 - 3:20 PM


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