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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

09. Expand U.S. Exports


The impact of September 11 on not only the U.S. economy but other nations' economies as well illustrates the linkage between trade and prosperity and well-being.  Globalization has allowed for sustained economic growth in the U.S. over the past decade.  In 2000, U.S. exports totaled $1.066 trillion — an 11 percent increase over 1999 — and 11 percent of our Gross Domestic Product, or one in every seven American jobs.

Trade will be increasingly important to the domestic economy and U.S. economic security.  The 1997 National Export Strategy sets the goal of expanding U.S. exports of goods and services from $800 billion in 1995 to $1.2 trillion early in the 21st century.  To accomplish the National Export Strategy objective, the Department relies on a number of export promotion efforts such as advocacy, finance, and public diplomacy.  This is especially effective in fast-growing, emerging markets such as Mexico, Brazil, China, Korea, and India.  The Department's geographic bureaus work with the Bureau of Economic Affairs to coordinate efforts to promote U.S. exports.  The Department is also working with other U.S. agency members of the Trade Policy Coordinating Committee to improve U.S. export assistance programs and to increase the accessibility of these programs by small- and medium-sized firms.  The Department's economic policy objectives overseas serve to increase market access and the competitiveness of U.S. products. 

Recent events have had a negative impact on world economic growth and U.S. exports, however the effects will likely be short term.  U.S. exports of goods decreased from $756 billion from October 1999 to September 2000 to $751 billion for the same period this year.  The largest decrease was in September.  Service exports increased slightly from $289 billion to $294 billion.  The growth of service exports relative to goods continues a trend that began in the mid-1980s. Total U.S. exports for the October to September timeframe remained about the same as the previous year at $1.05 trillion.

National Interest

Economic Prosperity

Performance Goal #


Strategic Goal

Expand U.S. exports to $1.2 trillion early in the 21st century.

Outcome Desired

Increase in both U.S. prosperity and U.S. companies' share of the global market.

Performance Goals

         Provide support to U.S. firms competing for business worldwide.

         Increase exports of U.S. oil and gas field equipment and services.

         Increase exports of U.S. telecommunications equipment and services.

         Increase exports of U.S. agricultural products.

FY '01 RESULTS AS OF 9/30/01

         The strategies outlined in the FY '01 plan were implemented and the goals were partially achieved.  Exports in certain sectors, such as agriculture and energy, increased.

         The Department met the performance objectives, however, due to general economic weakening and a sharp decline in exports for September, overall exports remained flat for the October 2000-September 2001 period.  Services exports helped offset a slight decline in goods exports.

         Strategies being pursued are increasing exports in the face of economic downturn.

         Department actively engaged in bilateral, regional, and multilateral discussions to open foreign markets to American products; advocated for U.S. companies, helping win overseas contracts (worth billions of U.S. dollars).

Performance Indicator

FY '00 Actual

FY '01 Target

FY '01 Actual

Number of outreach meetings and business briefings held




Number of business conferences attended




Number of companies for whom advocacy services were provided




Number and type of training opportunities

Commercial orientation 10/99.

Commercial orientation 9/00.

Training Completed 10/01

Status of Intranet Web site

New project - no baseline

Develop Web site.

Intranet Web site running

Telecommunications and Technology equipment sales

$115 billion

$126 billion

Data unavailable at time report was printed

Minutes/messages of overseas service provided by U.S. telecommunications operators including satellite companies

27.5 billion minutes

5.2 billion messages

30.2 billion minutes

5.7 billion messages

Data unavailable at time report was printed

Oil and gas sector exports

Exports of oil and gas field equipment steady in response to a firming of world oil prices and some recovery in global exploration and production expenditures.

Meaningful increases in U.S. exports of oil and gas field equipment and energy services to support opening energy tracts in the Middle East, Latin America, and the Caspian Region.

Exports in sector grew by 25.6 percent for the first 9-month period of 2001 over the same period last year.

Agricultural exports

$26.8 billion in total agricultural exports. (Inaccurate dollar value cited in FY '01 Plan. Accurate value was 50.9 billion)

$29.4 billion in total agricultural exports. (Target figure for FY '01 was inaccurate in FY '01 Plan. Target should have been an increase over FY '00 actual)

$52.9 billion in agricultural exports

$2 billion increase over FY '00


Source:  IMF, U.S. Government

Storage:  Department of State/EB



Complementary U.S. Government Activities (Non-Department of State)

Treasury:  Reform of international financial institutions, efforts to strengthen financial architecture and promote sound economic policies;

U.S. Trade Representative:  Bilateral and multilateral efforts to promote trade liberalization; and

U.S. Agency for International Development: Efforts to build capacity, combat corruption, improve health, and education.

Lead Agency

Department of State/EB


Regional bureaus, IO, INR, Treasury, U.S. Agency for International Development, U.S. Trade Representative, international financial institutions, and foreign governments

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