You can try to buy locally when possible, but it’s hard to avoid participating in the global economy altogether. Many products you use every day, from coffee in your cup to gas in your tank, have traveled thousands of miles from their home countries. To see which items are contributing to global trade, check out the maps below.
BusinessFinacing.co.uk has created these maps of top exports and imports by country using statistics from CEPII – BACI: International Trade Database. Oil appears frequently on both charts. It is the product that the United States imported and exported the most in 2019. It is also the first import to Mexico, Australia and China, and the first export to Canada, Iran and the United Kingdom.
Oil is not the only resource that crosses national borders. The second most important export is gold, which comes from countries like Nicaragua, Uganda and Senegal. Foods, such as coffee, bananas, and tuna, also make up a large portion of the global trade market.
Some countries claim more unusual exports. Only two countries, Costa Rica and Dominica, have surgical instruments as their main export, and Sri Lanka’s main export is bras.
These charts are based on data from two years ago, and the global supply chain is a little different today. But for a look at each country’s top imports and exports before the COVID-19 pandemic, check out the maps below.