Read the latest North Carolina International Trade Report, get information on the North Carolina Passport to Export STEP Program and find additional international trade resources.

2020 North Carolina International Trade Report

The 2020 North Carolina International Trade Report digs deeper into the details of a year marked by uncertainty due to the impact of the pandemic on global trade. During the year, the EDPNC deployed new approaches to support North Carolina businesses and help exporters navigate the challenges. The value of goods exported from North Carolina exceeded $28.46 billion in 2020.

The report examines export data across multiple industry sectors, highlighting North Carolina’s top export commodities and markets. It’s a high-level look at North Carolina’s export activity for both business owners and local economic developers.

In 2020, 633 North Carolina businesses turned to the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina for assistance ranging from export education webinars and market-entry strategies, to connect to federal grants to support participating in virtual trade shows and localizing business websites in other countries.

2020 North Carolina International Trade Report

North Carolina Passport to Export STEP Program

The Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC), in conjunction with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), provides funding to qualifying small businesses to offset costs associated with exporting. STEP funds are used to assist companies with participating in foreign trade shows and trade missions, translating marketing materials and websites to attract foreign buyers; obtaining services to support foreign market entry; and attending select export education courses throughout the state. Learn more about the STEP program here.


Funded in part through a grant with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Additional Resources

U.S. Commercial Services

Find resources from across the U.S. Government that help American businesses plan their international sales strategies.

U.S. Department of Commerce

Learn how the Department of Commerce operates, get information on grant opportunities, find local contacts for services and offices in your city, and more.

North Carolina Department of Agriculture

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture provides essential resources needed to bridge the gap between international buyers and North Carolina agribusiness.

Small Business and Technology Development Center

With offices on university campuses, the North Carolina SBTDC provides management counseling and educational services free of charge to small and mid-sized businesses.

Export-Import Bank of the U.S.

EXIM provides trade financing solutions including export credit insurance, working capital guarantees and guarantees of commercial loans to foreign buyers.

North Carolina Ports

Find information on North Carolina’s ports, including customer service for your business, maps and directions, business directories and more.

North Carolina District Export Council

NCDEC provides expertise, mentoring programs and tools to small and medium-sized businesses interested in exporting.

Overseas Private Investment Corporation

OPIC provides financial loans and guaranties, political risk insurance, and support for investment funds, all of which help American businesses expand into emerging markets.

U.S. Trade and Development Agency

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) links U.S. businesses to export opportunities by funding project planning activities, pilot projects and reverse trade missions while creating sustainable infrastructure and economic growth in partner countries.

U.S. Department of State

Learn how the State Department works, find links to its bureaus and offices, and see examples of diplomacy in action.

International Monetary Fund

The IMF monitors global economic trends that affect the health of the international financial system, and provides technical assistance and resources to members in the event of a crisis.

U.S. Small Business Administration

Learn about SBA assistance including access to capital (business financing), entrepreneurial development (education, information, technical assistance and training), government contracting (federal procurement) and advocacy (voice for small business).

Appalachian Regional Commission

Each year, ARC provides funding for several hundred investments in the Appalachian region in areas such as international business development, education and job training, telecommunications, infrastructure, community development, housing and transportation.


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