Rhode Island’s manufacturing exports play a key role in economic production and job growth. In 2023, more than 2,000 Rhode Island companies exported a total of $3 billion worth of goods, helping to support more than 137,000 well-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, 2,009 companies exported goods from Rhode Island of which 88% were small- and medium-sized enterprises. In 2018, 31,400 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 2023. Rhode Island's largest markets were:5
    • Canada ($487 million)
    • Italy ($388 million)
    • Dominican Republic ($331 million)
    • Ireland ($248 million)
    • Mexico ($220 million)
  • Agricultural exports are important to Rhode Island's' economy, totaling $33.1 million in 2020, according to the USDA.6
  • Since 2014, the U.S. Export-Import Bank has financed $117 million in exports from 14 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, 4,786 international students were enrolled in Rhode Island colleges and universities and contributed $258 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