South Dakota more than tripled its export to China from 2018 to 2020.  Not surprisingly, a big part of the state’s $970M exports to China in 2020 are soybeans and pork. Beyond Agriculture, South Dakota is eyeing the Chinese market for further export expansion, especially around manufacturing.  On the inbound investment side, Smithfield, now a Chinese owned enterprise, is the second-largest employer in South Dakota, employing nearly 4,000 people in the state and has one of its largest plants in Sioux Falls.  There is growing appreciation of the importance of educational exchanges with China in the state’s educational institutions. Even though the Chinese American population is small in the state, the history of early thriving Chinese American communities in the Black Hills is still celebrated in local communities each Chinese New Year.


$970 million in goods exports from South Dakota to China in 2020
$127 million in service exports from South Dakota to China in 2019

Jobs & Education


8.2% of international students in SD are Chinese (IIE, Open Doors 2021)




Why China Matters

Why China matters to the Heartland Join USHCA and our partners in exploring Why China Matters to the Heartland. Learn how each Heartland state benefits from its relationship with China economically, educationally and culturally. Event Date: January 25th, 2022 10:00

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  1. Export: the US-China Business Council 2020 State Export Report
  2. Jobs:
    • # of Jobs supported by US-China exports: the US-China Business Council
  3. Education:
  4. Agriculture:
  5. Investment:
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