February 28, 2006
"Improving international exports translates into good jobs for Alaskans," said Murkowski. "We've worked hard to improve Alaska's business climate and to aggressively market our products abroad. In the last two years, we have seen great progress."
Alaska finished 2004 with $3.2 billion in sales for the first time in more than a decade. That was $418 million, or a 15 percent increase, over the previous year.
"Exports are now a substantial $1.1 billion higher than 2002 levels," said economist Mark Edwards, director of the State Office of Economic Development. "This is even more remarkable considering that prior to 2003, Alaska's exports had declined in six of the previous ten years."
Strong seafood sales comprised a majority of the gains. Alaska exported nearly $2 billion in seafood internationally in 2005, an increase of $278 million from 2004 and 47 percent higher than 2002 levels.
Energy sales of liquefied natural gas, petrochemicals and coal totaled $335 million in 2005. Fertilizers, a natural gas byproduct, accounted for another $275 million in exports. Mineral sales of gold, lead and zinc totaled $595 million, and wood products added another $133 million in sales. Natural resource products account for 95 percent of Alaska's international exports.
"Seafood prices continue to rise, the Pogo and Kensington mines have been permitted and our prospects for more natural resource development are good," Murkowski said. "All of this will lead to thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in exports in the future."
Export totals are garnered from U.S. Census Bureau statistics and compiled and analyzed by the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.
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