Export Assistance Program

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Export Assistance Program

This page is no longer being maintained, though most of the material linked and listed here continues to be relevent.  If you are interested in exporting, please contact the Washington Small Business Development Center or the Washington State Department of Agriculture.


The Export Assistance Program’s mission is to assist new-to-export and new-to-market firms with little or no expertise in international trade. The Export Assistance Program’s ultimate goal is to create a “Culture of Exporting” across the state.  The Export Assistance Program seeks to support embryonic export relationships, which can develop into long term partnerships. Because research shows that firms located near exporters have a greater likelihood of exporting to those same destinations than otherwise, by creating a culture of exporting in Washington, we hope to begin a domino effect spilling over from firm to firm within the state without direct policy assistance.

The Export Assistance Program provides:

  • no-cost confidential, in-depth, and long-term one-on-one export advice
  • assistance in preparing market and trade research & understanding export and exchange rate data
  • assessment of the client’s export readiness
  • collaboration with the client to develop a plan that ensures short and long-term exporting success
  • guidance in navigating international trade forms and paperwork
  • additional resources as needed.

Select 2011 Accomplishments:

Select 2012 Accomplishments:

Exporter’s Toolkit

Get the Quickstart guide

Detailed Step-by-step instructions for agriculture exporting

Agricultural Trade Barriers by Country and Product


Conference Presentation (October 25, 2012): Exporting Trends, Facts & Profits
(Joint with James McCafferty of Western Washinton University’s Center for Economic Vitality)
Learn why your business should look at exporting as a long-term profitcenter.  In this session you will: understand how exporting will help youbuild a stronger business; learn how to select and enter an exportmarket; understand exporting trends, activities, and free tradeagreements; and how to access the free and low-cost resources availableto help you every step of the way.
Webinar presentation (August 20, 2012): Trends in Washington Exports

This webinar covers the compositional change in Washignton exports between 2011 and previous years, as well as showing what happened to Washington exports after Free Trade Agreements were signed with other countries.

Extension fact sheet (FS076E): Export Trends in Washington State, Vol. 4

This is the fourth edition of an annual series. New material includes 2010 export data.  Also new are tables showing the changing composition of Washington’s exports in terms of industries and destinations.

Seminar presentation (May 18, 2012): Trends in Washington Exports

This seminar focuses on changes to Washington’s exports using newly released 2010 data.

Extension fact sheet (FS071E): Export Process Quickstart Guide: Step-by-step to Agricultural Exporting 

Quick two-page overview of the 10 steps for agricultural exporting

Extension manual (EM041E): A Primer on Exchange Rates and Exporting

Opportunities to begin exporting or to expand export operations depend on a number of factors but one of the most important is the exchange rate. Individual business owners can do nothing to affect the exchange rate, but they can leverage their export opportunities using knowledge of exchange rate movements. This short primer, intended primarily for small business owners and owners new to exporting, will 1) describe the theoretical relationship between exchange rates and exports, 2) describe and interpret the exchange rate data, and 3) examine trends in exchange rates for the U.S. dollar going back to 1990. This combination of theory and data will reveal the reasons why exchange rates are important, and how understanding them will allow for improved international business decisions.

Extension fact sheet (FS036E): Export Trends in Washington State, Vol. 3

Accurate descriptions of export trends are needed for industry representatives, analysts, policymakers, and business owners to properly assess market conditions. This fact sheet provides data on manufactured exports from Washington State to foreign countries for several large industries (including aerospace and fruit and vegetable preserves) in a context emphasizing the relationships between exports and the overall economy. Unlike other export data sources, the data here can be used to compare 1) export changes over time, 2) export changes with overall industry shipment changes, and 3) changes to current importing countries with changes to the number of importing countries.

Webinar presentation (Mar. 23, 2011): Export Data & Trends (Slides)

Overall manufacturing exports increased in inflation-adjusted terms in 2009. This is due mainly to the rebound in exports of aerospace products and parts.  Most other industries exported less in 2009 than in 2008.

Conference presentation (Oct. 5, 2011): Export Assistance Program (Slides)

Overvies of the Export Assistance Program, including contact information, 10 steps to becoming an exporter, and exchange rate and export data.

Conference presentation (Nov. 18, 2011): Washington State Export Trends (Slides) (TV: TVW)

Documents the changes in destination and industry composition of Washington’s exports.  Also documents the trends in exports in amount and in the number of destinations receicing Washington exports.  A special emphasis is on Washington’s processed agricultural exports.

Department of Commerce Quarterly Trade Bulletin (July 2011): Processed Agricultural Exports in the Global Economy

Explains the difference between processed and unprocessed agricultural products and shows Washington export data for this very important economic sector.


Trends in Washington State Exports

Export Data

Agricultural Trade Barriers by Country and Product

Washington State Department of Agriculture Commodity Supplier Database


Export-Import Bank of the United States

The Ex-Im Bank is the official export credit agency of the United States. Ex-Im Bank’s mission is to assist in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to international markets.

U.S. Department of Agriculture: Export Credit Guarantee Program 

The Commodity Credit Corporation of the USDA administers the Export Credit Guarantee (GSM-102) Program.  This program is for commercial financing of U.S. agricultural exports.


U.S. Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agricultural Service:  Export Questionnaire

U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing Service: Directory of Freight Forwarders Serving Agricultural Exporters 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service provides an extensive, detailed searchable database of Agricultural Sector Freight Forwarders, including their experience in shipping agricultural products. This searchable database could assist exporters to find a freight forwarder according to Products and/or Destinations and/or Services.

Links to trade data and development organizations


The Export Assistance Program is run through the Washington Small Business Development Center (SBDC).


Exporting Resources


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