Where does Mexico stand as an export market in 2015? A quick and practical Reference Guide by US states and their political affiliations

Where does Mexico stand as an export market for each of the 50 US states?

  • In 2015, Mexico was the first export market for Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas which together represent almost 30% of total US exports to the world. For New Mexico and Arizona, the Mexican market accounts for more than 40% of their world exports each.
  • For Texas, the largest US exporter, the trade relationship with Mexico is just as big as the Lone Star state itself, standing at a 37.3% share in 2015, that is, US$92.5 billion (bn), and being, by far, the largest absolute bilateral export relationship between any US state and a foreign partner[1]. Since 1999, Mexico has been Texas’ first export market, accounting, on average, for more than 38% of that state’s exports to the world. Such amount equals to the exports that Texas does to its next 13 export partners abroad at least…like this, or you want it bigger!
  • California, the second largest US exporter, epitomizes a well-balanced inclusion in global markets and product diversification approach. Part of this success might be explained by its economic links to the Mexican market. Mexico has been its first export market since 1999 with an average share of 15.2%. Mexico has been a stable partner for the Golden State’s export base. Greater China[2] has become one of the most dynamic export markets for California. In 2015, the Asian Giant represented 14% of California’s exports well above the 6.2% figure back in 1999. In spite of this impressive performance, Mexico is still ahead and is showing a renewed upward trend while China is slowing down.
  • In 2015, the Mexican export market was the second largest for 50% of all US states[3]. Among them, there are 7 in which Mexico represented more than 15% in exports from states such as South Dakota (28.2%), Michigan (21.9%), Nebraska (19.2%), Missouri (18.3%), Kansas (16.8%), Iowa (15.9%), and Tennessee (15.1%).
  • And just for the record and as a reminder of the political dimension of this analysis, 5 of these very important partners have been leaning Republican since 1982 (3 are 100% Republican[4] and 2 showing a 75% Republican bias[5]), while the other two have shown a 75% Democrat bias[6].
  • Wrapping up the top 5 list, the Mexican market is the 3rd largest for 4 US states[7], the 4th for 2[8], and the 5th for 4[9].
  • In only 10 US states[10], the Mexican export market is not part of the top 5 list in 2015, but that does not translate into a weak trade relationship since NAFTA became effective or a decreasing trend.

In our next entries, we will be back analysing each one of the 50 US states trade relationship with Mexico.




[1] The second largest is California-Mexico (US$26.8 bn), 3rd is Texas-Canada (US$25.5 bn), 4th Michigan-Canada (US$23.5 bn), 5th Ohio-Canada (US$20.3 bn), and 6th Washington-China (US$19.5 bn).

[2] Includes mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau.

[3] Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.

[4] Kansas, Nebraska, and South Dakota.

[5] Missouri and Tennessee.

[6] Iowa and Michigan.

[7] Alabama, Florida, Kentucky, and Virginia.

[8] Nevada and Utah.

[9] Connecticut, Maryland, South Carolina, and Vermont.

[10] Idaho (6th), Montana (6th), Maine (8th), New York (8th), Delaware (11th), Oregon (11th), Washington (12th), West Virginia (12th), Wyoming (12th), Alaska (24th), and Hawaii (25th).

Author: Félix González Sáenz


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