Hundreds of thousands of Idaho jobs are supported by international trade, through various industries and to numerous countries, according to a new study from Business Roundtable.
Business Roundtable is a membership group, comprised of American CEOs, that promotes pro-business research and policy. The study is based on employment data from 2017, collected by Trade Partnership Worldwide, an international trade and economic consulting firm.
In 2017, trade with Canada supported 7.2 million American jobs; Mexico, 4.9 million; European Union, 5.7 million; China, 7.3 million; Japan, 1.3 million; and Korea and the UK, just over 1 million jobs each, according to the study.
According to a Business Roundtable news release, the data highlights the need to preserve and strengthen trade relationships among North American countries, such as the proposed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
"The CEO members of Business Roundtable, who lead companies with more than 15 million employees, strongly support congressional passage of USMCA implementing legislation this year," said Tom Linebarger, chairman and CEO of Cummins Inc. and chairman of the Business Roundtable Trade & International Committee, in the release. "We stand united to preserve and modernize North American trade, which supports over 12 million jobs and a strong U.S. economy."
The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, proposed by the Trump Administration as a replacement for the current North American Free Trade Agreement, is being debated in Congress.
In Idaho, international trade supported 205,200 jobs in 2017. That year, Idaho exported an estimated $4 billion in goods and $1.6 billion in services, accounting for 7.8 percent of Idaho’s total gross domestic product, the study says.
Exported goods came from industries such as semiconductors and components, $977 million in 2017; oilseeds and grains, $407 million; computer equipment, $287 million; navigational and measurement instruments, $267 million; and dairy products, $251 million.
Exported services include travel, $547 million in 2017; royalties from industrial processes, $216 million; and research and development and testing services, $188 million.
Idaho ranked in the top 10 of U.S. state exporters for cattle (seventh), dairy products (seventh), vegetables and melons (eighth) and magnetic and optical media (ninth).
In 2017, Idaho companies sold their products in 168 countries and territories, the study says. Idaho's top export markets for goods are Canada, Taiwan and Singapore. Its top market for services is China.
Canada and Mexico combined supported 61,200 Idaho jobs and $1.3 billion in Idaho's goods and services exports. Major exports to North American countries include pesticides and fertilizers, $129 million in 2017; grain and oilseed milling products, $88 million; and veneer, plywood and engineered wood, $34 million.