Book exports to Canada rose 6.6% last year, helping to increase total 2005 U.S. book exports 8.8%, to $1.89 billion, according to figures from the U.S. Commerce Department. Shipments to the U.K., the second largest market for U.S. books, slipped 1.5% in the year, to $285 million. Mexico jumped from fifth to third place, with exports soaring 55.3%, to $102.6 million. A 226% increase in professional book exports led the gain in shipments to Mexico. A 28.3% increase in exports to Australia coupled with a 5.1% decline in shipments to Japan pushed Australia ahead of Japan as the fourth largest book market in 2005.
Among the largest export segments, professional book shipments had the most significant increase, jumping 26.7%, to $355.7 million. In addition to the hefty increase of exports to Mexico, large gains were reported to the U.K. and Australia. Hardcover exports rose 15.7%, to $120 million, although mass market paperback exports dropped 8%, to $159.3 million. Exports of religious books increased 4.1%, to $64.3 million. Textbook shipments fell 1% in 2005, to $307.7 million, as exports to the top four markets—the U.K., Canada, Singapore and Japan—all declined.
Imports rose at about half the rate of exports last year, increasing 4.8%, to just over $2 billion. China further cemented its place as the largest offshore manufacturer of American books with exports from that country rising 13.4%, to $605.3 million. Imports from the U.K. inched up 1% last year, to $307.5 million, and fell 2.9% from Canada and 5.3% from Hong Kong, the third and fourth largest source of imports, respectively. Imports from Mexico spiked in the year, increasing 81%, to $40.9 million. Imports from India, which is becoming a more important location for outsourced production services, increased 52.2% last year to a still modest $12.5 million.
U.S. Book Exports, 2004—2005
($ in millions)
|Source: U.S. Commerce Department |
|Total, Top 15 Countries||1,580.2||1,697.9||7.4|