A new report from the Office of the United States Trade Representative shows soybeans and transportation equipment dominated exports from Kentucky, Illinois, and Tennessee in 2014. Soybeans led key agricultural exports in the Four Rivers region with over $4 billion combined, or close to 20% of the U.S. total. Illinois topped that category with over $3 billion. Kentucky exported $13.7 billion of transportation equipment, the largest share of the three states' combined $29 billion in key manufacturing.
Kentucky Export Initiative officials are encouraging businesses throughout the Commonwealth to consider exporting their products.
KEI Project Manager Morgan Pierstorff said exports are a growing portion of the commonwealth’s economy, and although just three percent of Kentucky companies export, they totaled $22 billion in sales in 2012.
Madisonville-Hopkins County Chamber President Lee Lingo and Madisonville Area Manufacturers Association President Kent Waide of Ruby Concrete join Kate Lochte on Sounds Good. They are collaborating on a Kentucky Export Initiative Outreach Meeting Thursday. The luncheon will help local and regional businesses learn about opportunities and benefits in exporting products. The two organizations partner to bring the event to the Madisonville Economic Development office at 755 Industrial Road, at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow (Thursday, July 18).
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and the Department of Economic and Community Development announced Monday that the state is opening four international offices that will focus on increasing exports from the state. The new development offices will be in Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany and China.
ECD Commissioner Bill Hagerty says this step is imperative if Tennessee wants to access untapped markets. The overseas offices will help small and medium sized businesses navigate the exporting process by providing market analysis, sales and marketing planning, identification of distribution partners and company matchmaking free of charge.