GLOBAL MARKETS & INTERNATIONAL TRADE
Alaska has had a role in the global economy since the late 1700s, when Russian fur traders first traded Alaska sea otter pelts with the Chinese. Sale of natural resource commodities to world markets has been an economic theme ever since, and today the state’s major international exports are seafood, minerals and ores, and petroleum. Over the last five years Alaska’s exports have averaged nearly $5 billion per year.
Breaking down Alaska’s exports by specific product offers further detail. Zinc is the state’s single most valuable international export, sourced from Red Dog Mine, located in the Northwest Arctic region of the state, with one of the largest known reserves of zinc in the world. Various seafood and petroleum products, (which sometimes follow inconsistent classifications) make up most of the remainder of international exports.