Why Choose a Career in Global Trade?

International trade is involved in everything we own or use—from the food we eat to the cars on the road, the clothing we wear and even the roads and bridges that contribute to every city’s infrastructure. Its presence continues to grow and contribute to the global economy, helping to shape opportunities for prosperity around the world, and particularly here in California.
California depends on global trade. Almost five million jobs in California can be attributed to international trade. With more than 95 percent of the world’s population living beyond U.S. borders, international trade has become a necessary bridge to provide businesses with the access and ability to expand. Technology has granted people incredible access to the world at the click of their fingertips. Companies can enter the global marketplace, launch offices abroad, and even take advantage of trade agreements to export and import from across the world.

As more businesses branch out to foreign markets, opportunities for those interested in international business, trade policy and international affairs will increase. Multinational corporations, joint ventures, financial institutions, law firms, consulting agencies, and manufacturers of both goods and services cater to a growing international clientele. As a result, both public and private businesses find themselves employing a large number of individuals to handle international-related issues and business.

California exports translate into high-paying jobs for more than one million Californians. International trade, including exports and imports, supports nearly five million California jobs – over 1 in 4 jobs.

Careers in global trade offer the opportunity to work in a constantly changing environment and to make a real impact on the region’s economy. Perks include the ability to explore new cultures and markets and travel to new and exciting places. And because so many products depend on trade, there are many opportunities to work with products and services you are passionate about. If this sounds exciting, you may be interested in a career in international trade! Use this guide to obtain information about the different industries, both private and public, which can help you seize the opportunities provided by this growing industry.

$156.1 Billion

In 2020, CA exported $156.1 billion to 227 foreign economies. Exports from California accounted for 7.4 percent of total U.S. exports in 2020.

Top Export Markets

California’s top export markets are Mexico, Canada, China, Japan and South Korea.

4.8 Million Jobs

International trade, including exports and imports, supports 4.8 million California jobs – more than 1 in 4.