Business for Saskatchewan exporters rose 4.3 per cent in the first six months of 2013, generating more than $17.5 billion in sales and putting the province on pace to surpass its annual export record, set in 2012.
Strong sales in key Asian markets pushed export numbers higher in the first half of the year. Exports to India more than doubled, soaring from $264 million to $553 million, a 109.6 per cent increase. Sales to China were up 16.7 per cent, to $1.5 billion, and exports to Japan jumped 8.4 per cent, to $595 million. Exports to countries outside the United States rose by 10 per cent.
Among the provinces, Saskatchewan recorded the third highest increase in exports in the first half of 2013, trailing only Nova Scotia and British Columbia, and was well ahead of the national increase of 0.8 per cent.
“These numbers are evidence our economy is strong and diversified and testify to the strength of Saskatchewan businesses that are producing goods and services in demand around the world,” Premier Brad Wall said. “Our government’s growth agenda has focused on Asia. We have completed a number of precedent setting trade missions to the region and we are in the midst of planning our next Asian trade mission. Saskatchewan’s future prosperity depends on building strong trade connections to the world’s fastest growing region.”
Oil and gas continued to be the biggest export for Saskatchewan, producing $6.3 billion in sales during the first six months of the year. Potash exports came in second at $3.4 billion, while wheat exports were third at $1.7 billion.
“The demand for Saskatchewan goods and services continues to be strong in a cross section of STEP member-related sectors,” Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP) President and Chief Executive Officer Lionel LaBelle said. “The results coming out of Saskatchewan speak to the proven success of provincial exporters and their ability to provide the world with what STEP members produce.”
STEP, a non-profit, government/industry partnership, has been a major player in growing Saskatchewan’s international exports from $9.3 billion per year in 1996 to more than $32.6 billion in 2012.
For more information, please visit www.sasktrade.sk.ca.