Nearly 860,000 jobs directly supported by the nation's tech trade
WASHINGTON, May 21, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Exports of U.S. technology industry products and services grew by some $16 billion in 2018, to an estimated $338 billion, according to the annual "Tech Trade Snapshot 2019" report released today by CompTIA, the leading trade association for the global technology industry.
The report reveals that U.S. technology exports directly supported an estimated 858,000 American jobs in 2017 – the most recent year of available data – an increase of 5.2 percent over the prior year.
"The global demand for all things digital – devices, applications, content and the underlying technology infrastructure – continues unabated," said Tim Herbert, senior vice president for research and market intelligence at CompTIA. "Technology plays a unique role in international trade. Not only is it one of the largest categories of exports. But technology serves as a catalyst for businesses and consumers to connect, create and exchange, thereby encouraging even more trade."
Since 2010, U.S. exports of technology added nearly $65 billion in new earnings and aggregate growth of 23 percent. This even as growth slowed slightly in 2018, increasing by 2.5 percent compared to the 2017 rate of 4.5 percent. Exports account for approximately $1 in every $4 generated in the U.S. tech sector.
The U.S. is also a big importer of technology products and services. American businesses and consumers purchased nearly $500 billion in technology goods and services from overseas sellers in 2018, resulting in a tech trade deficit of slightly over $160 billion. That deficit was narrowed somewhat by a trade surplus in U.S. tech services exports, which experienced a surplus of nearly $40 billion in 2018, a figure that grew 10.5 percent over the previous year.
U.S. – China Technology Trade
U.S. technology product exports to China showed gains in 2018, but escalating trade tensions make it difficult to predict where tech trade between the economic powerhouses is headed.
The CompTIA report finds that U.S. technology product exports to China increased by 4.9 percent last year, to $17.9 billion. U.S. companies exported $2.2 billion worth of technology services to China in 2017, the most recent year of available detailed data. Overall, tech services grew by 3.9 percent in 2017, adding $82 million in new sales.
By comparison, the U.S. imported $187.7 billion in technology products and services from China in 2017.
"The U.S.-China trade dispute resulted in tariffs on tech product imports increasing fivefold from 2017 to 2018," said Stefanie Holland, CompTIA's vice president for federal and global policy. "Should a 25-percent tariff rate apply to all tech product imports the costs could run into the tens of billions of dollars."
"Barriers to trade do not foster long-term economic growth and will continue to negatively impact products that are designed, developed and manufactured in the United States," Holland added. "We encourage the U.S. and China to reach a deal that protects American innovation and intellectual property."
CompTIA's "Tech Trade Snapshot 2019" is based on an analysis of import and export data from the U.S. Office of Trade Policy and Analysis, the U.S. International Trade Association, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and The Trade Partnership's CDexports database. The complete report is available at https://www.comptia.org/resources/tech-trade-snapshot-2019.
The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) is a leading voice and advocate for the $5 trillion global information technology ecosystem; and the more than 50 million industry and tech professionals who design, implement, manage, and safeguard the technology that powers the world's economy. Through education, training, certifications, advocacy, philanthropy, and market research, CompTIA is the hub for advancing the tech industry and its workforce.
CompTIA supports policies that advance free and open competition; promote a highly educated and technical workforce; encourage collaboration and cooperation in ideas and technology; advance regulations that positively impact the ability of the private sector to effectively research, develop, integrate, manufacture, service and sell solutions in the global marketplace; and improve the use of technology in the state and local government, human services and space enterprise markets. Visit www.comptia.org to learn more.
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