Ocean State Treasures: Top Ten Rhode Island Exports

Did you know that Rhode Island sends products all over the world? When you think of international trade, the Ocean State may not be the first thing that comes to mind. But according to Business Roundtable, Rhode Island falls into the top half of state exporters in eight industries. This includes being in the top ten exporters of marine products and scrap products.

By exporting more goods, new business is created for our state’s manufacturers and service providers—which also increases the number of jobs in the state. From 1992 to 2016, Rhode Island’s trade-related employment grew 7.4 times faster than total employment.


If you’re interested in going global but want to learn more about the top exports and most lucrative industries, keep reading.

The top ten Rhode Island exports boosting the Ocean State economy

Can you guess what the top exports from the Ocean State are? According to World’s Top Exports, Rhode Island’s top export products are:

  1. Miscellaneous precious metal scrap (15.7% of RI’s total exports)
  2. Immunological products (unmixed)
  3. Imitation jewelry (precious metal)
  4. Gold compounds
  5. Iron or steel scrap
  6. Gold scrap
  7. Silver powder
  8. Jewelry articles containing silver
  9. Chemical preparations for photographic purposes
  10. Antisera, other blood fractions

If you’re interested in one of the specific industries above, get started by researching data by country and industry. The U.S. International Trade Administration  offers an excellent website with critical compliance guidance, training webinars and other national and local resource information.

How we can help

The RISBDC offers data sources, best practices, access to private sector and government officials, and financial incentives designed to improve your chances of success. Our team can help you through the planning and implementation of your international business plan.

As you start on your international journey, we want to remind you that developing customers in international markets takes longer than in domestic markets, but exporters grow their revenues faster than domestic companies.


Additional resources

Here are a few additional resources to help you get started:

  • Trade Passport offers a variety of webinars targeting logistics, trade compliance, and planning for both experienced and new to export businesses.
  • Commerce RI has a variety of grants available to qualified businesses seeking to offset expenses involved with exporting.
  • SBA’s State Trade Expansion Program helps provide financial awards to aid in export development.
  • Exporters may consider targeting markets based on existing trade agreements. The U.S. has 20 trade agreements that provide US exporters with unique access to a variety of markets.
  • The World Bank is an excellent source when planning to export. They rate countries for ease of doing business, per capita income, growth rates and political risk.

Are you ready to start exporting?

RISBDC business counselors are a free, confidential resource, available to help small businesses through the strategy and implementation of your international plan. Register with us to schedule an appointment today.