Rhode Island’s manufacturing exports play a key role in economic production and job growth. In 2022, nearly 1,900 Rhode Island companies exported a total of $2.9 billion worth of goods, helping to support more than 137,000 good-paying Rhode Island jobs.

Job Creation

  • In Rhode Island, 137,300 jobs were supported by international trade in 2019, representing 20.9% of all jobs in the state.1,2
  • In 2020, 1,871 companies exported goods from Rhode Island of which 87% were small- and medium-sized enterprises. In 2018, 31,200 people were employed by affiliates of companies at least 50% foreign-owned.3,4

Exports and Growth

  • Rhode Island exported $3.0 billion in goods to foreign markets in 2021, a 25% increase compared to 2020 driven by continued economic recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy.5
    • Canada ($467 million)
    • Italy ($406 million)
    • Dominican Republic ($316 million)
    • Germany ($160 million)
    • Mexico ($150 million)
  • Agricultural exports are important to Rhode Island's' economy, totaling $36 million in 2020, according to the USDA.6
  • Since 2014, the U.S. Export-Import Bank has financed $114 million in exports from 13 companies in Rhode Island.7
  • Since 1992, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency has helped facilitate $248 million in exports from Rhode Island companies.9

Education and Research

  • During 2020, 4,401 international students were enrolled in Rhode Island colleges and universities and contributed $232 million to the Rhode Island economy.10

Global Engagement

  • Since 1961, 1,114 Peace Corps volunteers from Rhode Island have served in dozens of countries overseas.11