US equipment exports soar +24%

By Chris Sleight02 September 2008

Exports of US-built construction equipment were up +24% in the first half of the year, compared to the same period in 2007. According to the US-based Association of Equipment manufacturers (AEM), the value of these sales was more than US$ 10 billion.

The AEM said its members enjoyed double-digit export growth in all regions of the world except Central America. Africa led the way with a +59% increase, although this was the smallest end market for US manufacturers, with sales totalling US$ 692 million.

By far the biggest market for US-made equipment in the first half of the year was Canada, with sales totalling US$ 3.35 billion. This was a +28% increase on sales levels from January to June 2007.

The next biggest export destination was Europe, at US$ 1,6 billion, a +21% increase on the first half of 2007. Not far behind was South America at US$ 1.4 billion, an impressive +30% higher than a year previously. Asia was not far behind, buying US$ 1.35 billion worth of American construction machines in the first six months of the year, a +16% rise.

In the Asia/Oceania area sales were up +19% to US$ 856 million, US$ 824 million, or 96% of which was sold in Australia. The Central American market was a similar size at US$ 838 million, but growth was just +3%.

Commenting on the half-year figures, AEM senior vice president, Al Cervero said, "Exports remain a bright sport for the US construction equipment manufacturing industry in these uncertain times, and whoever is elected President in November needs to focus on passage of free and fair trade agreements that eliminate barriers to commerce across borders.

The top 10 export destinations for US-built construction equipment in the first half of the year were:

  1. Canada - US$ 3.35 billion (up +28%)
  2. Australia - US$ 824 million (up +18%)
  3. Mexico - (US$ 545 million (down -7%)
  4. Chile - US$ 406 million (up +17%)
  5. South Africa - US$ 369 million (up +47%)
  6. Belgium - US$ 362 million (up +9%)
  7. Brazil - US$ 258 million (up 59%)
  8. Singapore - US$ 235 million (up +48%)
  9. Russia - US$ 231 million (up +40%)
  10. Colombia - US$ 230 million (up +44%)
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