Wisconsin is a world leader in industrial machinery and high-tech manufacturing, which helped the state export $23 billion worth of goods in 2018. Nearly 8,500 companies in the state export overseas, which helped to support more than 740,000 Wisconsin jobs.

Job Creation

  • In Wisconsin, 748,500 jobs were supported by international trade in 2017, representing 20.3% of all jobs in the state.1,2
  • In 2016, 8,485 companies exported goods from Wisconsin of which 86% were small- and medium-sized enterprises. In 2016, 98,600 people were employed by affiliates of companies at least 50% foreign-owned.2,3

Exports and Growth

  • Wisconsin exported $22.7 billion in goods to foreign markets in 2018. Wisconsin's largest markets in 2018 were:4
    • Canada ($7 billion)
    • Mexico ($3.5 billion)
    • China ($1.6 billion)
    • Germany ($814 million)
    • United Kingdom ($792 million)
  • Agricultural exports are important to Wisconsin's' economy, totaling $2.9 billion in 2017, according to the USDA.5
  • Since 2014, the U.S. Export-Import Bank has financed $1 billion in exports from 139 companies in Wisconsin.6
  • Since 1971, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation has invested $31 million in Wisconsin companies for overseas investment.7
  • Since 1992, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency has helped facilitate $399 million in exports from Wisconsin companies, supporting an estimated 2,250 jobs in the state.8

Education and Research

  • In 2016-2017, 8,282 Wisconsin students studied abroad.9
  • During 2018, 12,951 international students were enrolled in Wisconsin colleges and universities and contributed $407 million to the Wisconsin economy.9

Global Engagement

  • Since 1961, 6,422 Peace Corps volunteers from Wisconsin have served in dozens of countries overseas.10