Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Local Firms Expand Sales from Exports

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Local Firms Expand Sales from Exports

Article excerpt

Exports from the Oklahoma City Metropolitan Statistical Area increased $9.7 million, or 2 percent to $488.5 million in 1994 from $478.8 million in 1993.

Those figures placed Oklahoma City 107th among a list of 256 metropolitan areas surveyed by the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Rankings and figures in the survey, however, are skewed by both the survey methodology and changes in the survey between years, and are not directly comparable with figures from previous years, said Ronald Wilson, director of the Oklahoma District Office of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

"It is good, though, to even be ranked in the top 250 metropolitan areas," he said.

The Tulsa Metropolitan Statistical Area ranked 71st in the survey with exports valued at $1.24 billion, down 2.5 percent from the $1.27 billion in the 1993 survey.

The survey showed the two Oklahoma cities ranking near the bottom of the rate of export sales growth from 1993 to 1994, with Oklahoma City 176th, and Tulsa 239th.

More current state figures show Oklahoma's exports increased from $2.17 billion in 1994 to $2.46 billion in 1995, said Kevin Chambers, director of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce International Division.

Export sales of the 256 metropolitan areas increased 11.5 percent to $415 billion in 1994 from $372 billion in 1993. Their sales accounted for roughly 80 percent of all U.S. merchandise sales abroad during the year.

Export location statistics, or the location credited with the export, is deceiving in the report. Exporters of record are credited at their headquarters locations, which frequently is different than production locations, Wilson said.

Classic examples are two Oklahoma City plants that are among the city's largest exporters, General Motors and Lucent Technologies, formerly known as AT&T. …

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