Textiles & Apparel

Textiles & Apparel Production & Trade

This section discusses the current status and historical trends related to imports and exports in the textiles and apparel industry. It covers trends for the industry in North Carolina, the U.S. and top competing states and shows North Carolina’s footprint in relationship to the U.S. industry and other states. This analysis is based on our NAICS-based definition of the textiles and apparel industry using data compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau, Foreign Trade Division available on the USA Trade Online website. Links are provided to the underlying data in the form of interactive tables, charts and maps throughout this section. Import and export data for the textile and apparel industries is represented by the following NAICS codes:

  • Textile components: 313
  • Final products (textile products and apparel): 314 and 315
Overview

In 2012, the United States exported $17.6 billion in textile components and textile and apparel final products, of which $2.3 billion were from North Carolina (13%). Over the last 10 years (2002-2012), the value of North Carolina’s textile component exports increased by 36%; faster than the U.S average of 18.4%.

The United States and North Carolina are both primarily exporters of textile components and importers of apparel. The primary textile component export destinations for North Carolina are Honduras (36%), Mexico (13%), the Dominican Republic (11%) and Canada (10%). The main source of apparel is China (40% of U.S. apparel imports).

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North Carolina
Present (2012)
  • Exports
    • In 2012, North Carolina exported $2.3 billion in textile components, textile products and apparel (T6a). The top export destinations are Honduras, Mexico and Canada.
    • The vast majority (75%) of North Carolina’s exports are from NAICS code 313, textile components ($1.76 billion). The main textile component export destinations are Honduras (36%), Mexico (13%), the Dominican Republic (11%) and Canada (10%). (T6a; M6a). (C6a).
  • Imports
    • North Carolina imported $7.6 billion in textile components and final products in 2012 (T7a). Unlike exports, the majority of imports are apparel products ($6.3 billion). Countries that account for 5% or more of NC imports are China (21%), Honduras, Mexico, El Salvador, Haiti and Vietnam (5%) (T7a).
Historical Trends
  • Exports (2002-2012)
    • The value of NC’s exports decreased between 2002 and 2012 by 10% ($2.6 billion to $2.3 billion). Textile exports (NAICS 313) increased by 36% and textile product exports increased by 17%, however apparel exports declined by 64%.
  • Imports (2008-2012)
    • North Carolina’s imports increased between 2008 and 2012 from $6.4 to $7.6 billion (T7a).

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United States
Present (2012)
  • Exports
    • The total value of U.S. textile and apparel exports was $17.6 billion (T6b).
    • Textiles made up 51% of U.S. exports, while textile products made up 19% and apparel 30% (C6b).
    • The top five destinations of U.S. textile & apparel exports were Canada (25%), Mexico (24%), Honduras (8%), the Dominican Republic (4%) and China (3%) (T6b; M6b).
  • Imports
    • The total value of U.S textile and apparel imports was $106.4 billion (T7b).
    • Textiles made up 7% of U.S. imports, while textile products made up 16%. Apparel accounted for 77% of U.S. imports (C7b).
    • As of 2012, the largest share of imports came from China (40%), followed by Vietnam (7%), India (6%), Indonesia and Mexico (each 5%) (T7b; M7b).
Historical Trends
  • Exports (2002 v. 2012)
    • U.S. textile and apparel exports increased from $15.6 to 17.6 billion between 2002 and 2012 (T6b).
  • Imports (2008 v. 2012)
    • U.S. textile and apparel imports have also increased from $98 billion to $106 billion (T7b). Apparel has remained the main category for U.S. imports.

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Top U.S. States
Present (2012)
  • Exports
    • The top five states for textile and apparel exports were: California (15%), North Carolina (13%), Texas (12%), Georgia (8%) and New York (4%) (T6c; C6c). In 2012, the specific exporting state is unknown for 6% of the total value.
    • North Carolina (19.5%), Texas (15.7%), Georgia (7.1%), South Carolina (6.2%) and California (6.2%) led in textile component exports (T6c; C6c).
    • In apparel, the main exporting states are California, Texas, North Carolina, New York and New Jersey (T6c; C6c).
  • Imports
    • The top five states for textile and apparel imports in 2012 were: New York (25.7%), California (19.7%), North Carolina (6.2%), New Jersey (5.3%) and Georgia (4.8%) (T7c; C7c).
Historical Trends
  • Exports (2002 v. 2012)
    • U.S. textile and apparel exports increased from $15.6 to 17.6 billion between 2002 and 2012 (T6b).
  • Imports (2008 v. 2012)
    • U.S. textile and apparel imports have also increased from $98 billion to $106 billion (T7b). Apparel has remained the main category for U.S. imports.

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NC in the U.S. Economy
  • North Carolina is the leading U.S. exporter of textile components. In 2012, the United States exported $17.6 billion in textile components and textile and apparel final products, of which $2.3 billion were from North Carolina (13%). Over the last 10 years (2002-2012), the value of North Carolina’s textile component exports increased by 36%; faster than the U.S average of 18.4%.
  • The United States and North Carolina are both primarily exporters of textile components and importers of apparel. The primary textile component export destinations for North Carolina are Honduras (36%), Mexico (13%), the Dominican Republic (11%) and Canada (10%). The main source of apparel is China (40% of U.S. apparel imports).

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