Washington: Facts and Figures

Washington’s businesses are some of the most recognizable in the world, from Boeing to Microsoft to Starbucks. In addition, timber and agricultural exports - as well as one of the most trafficked ports on the west coast in Seattle - help Washington exports reach every corner of the globe. In 2020, these exports generated over $40 billion and helped support over 940,000 good-paying Washington jobs.

Job Creation

  • In Washington, 940,800 jobs were supported by international trade in 2018, representing 20.60% of all jobs in the state.1,2
  • In 2019, 12,079 companies exported goods from Washington of which 89% were small- and medium-sized enterprises. In 2018, 140,600 people were employed by affiliates of companies at least 50% foreign-owned.3,4

Exports and Growth

  • Washington exported $41.3 billion in goods to foreign markets in 2020, a 32% decline compared to 2019 driven by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy.5
    • China ($9.1 billion)
    • Canada ($6.3 billion)
    • Japan ($4.8 billion)
    • South Korea ($1.9 billion)
    • Philippines ($1.7 billion)
  • Agricultural exports are important to Washington's' economy, totaling $3.6 billion in 2019, according to the USDA.6
  • Since 2014, the U.S. Export-Import Bank has financed $33 billion in exports from 135 companies in Washington.7
  • Since 1971, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation - which has been modernized into the Development Finance Corporation (DFC) - has invested $485 million in Washington companies for overseas investment.8
  • Since 1992, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency has helped facilitate $23 billion in exports from Washington companies, supporting an estimated 131,700 jobs in the state.9

Education and Research

  • In 2018-2019, 6,780 Washington students studied abroad.10
  • During 2020, 26,089 international students were enrolled in Washington colleges and universities and contributed $924 million to the Washington economy.10

Global Engagement

  • Since 1961, 9,968 Peace Corps volunteers from Washington have served in dozens of countries overseas.11