Exports of U.S.-manufactured construction equipment increased 13 percent in 2013 compared to 2012, for a total of $26.7 billion, according to the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, citing U.S. Commerce Dept. data. AEM said that the 13-percent gain for 2012 follows a 43-percent leap in 2011 and 28-percent growth in 2010, after a 38-percent plunge in 2009 during the recession.

Exports of U.S. construction equipment to Australia/Oceania showed the biggest jump, growing 42 percent year over year to total $3.9 percent. Exports to Africa went up 14 percent; Europe and Central America 13 percent, and exports to Canada hiked 12 percent. Exports to South America only jumped 6 percent while exports to Asia only increased 2 percent.

“Exports have been called a bright spot for the U.S. economy, and this has been especially true for construction equipment manufacturers,” said Al Cervero, AEM vice president and construction sector leader. “Exports have been essential to our industry’s rebound as we continue to struggle with uneven U.S. markets. With this global slowing and continued domestic market uncertainties, it’s more important than ever for our lawmakers to enact job-creating export and manufacturing policies.”

The top 10 export destinations for U.S.-made construction machinery in 2012 was topped by Canada at $8.1 billion, a 12-percent increase, followed by Australia at $3.8 billion, up 43 percent; Mexico, $1.8 billion, a 13-percent jump; Chile, $1.7 billion, up 25 percent; South Africa at $894 million, up 31 percent; Brazil, $886 million, a 7-percent decline; Belgium, $806 million, up 43 percent; Peru, $779 million, up 36 percent; Russia, $715 million, up 10 percent; and China, $680 million, down 25 percent.