Exports of U.S. agricultural equipment dropped 20 percent during the first half of 2009 compared to midyear 2008, at $4.7 billion down from $5.8 billion a year earlier, according to the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM).
The steepest declines in American farm machinery exports were to Europe and South America and the smallest drop to Canada, with a slight gain to Australia/Oceania, according to AEM.
"Farm machinery exports continue to deteriorate as the global recession adversely affects most world regions, with some areas extremely hard hit by the turmoil in financial markets," said Charlie O'Brien, AEM vice president of agricultural services.
O'Brien cited Russia as an example of countries that had been devoting substantial resources to upgrading their agriculture sectors but are now at a standstill. Deere & Company has announced plans to build more tractors in Russia.
Exports to Europe decreased 35 percent to $1.7 billion and exports to South America dropped 22 percent to $314 million, the largest declines. Exports to Canada decreased 1 percent for a total $1.5 billion, with exports to Africa dropping 6 percent to $133 million.
The only gain was recorded by Australia/Oceania, an increase of 6 percent for a total $367 million.