Central Iowa companies should consider exporting more services as well as products to increase international trade, the Greater Des Moines Regional Export Plan released last week recommended. Just 30 percent of the $5.7 billion in exports by Central Iowa companies last year consisted of services, according to the report. Boosting service sector exports is one of four broad recommendations in the report, which outlines specific strategies. Greater Des Moines is one of 12 metropolitan areas that have been selected by the Brookings Institution to receive assistance in developing an export plan tailored to regional strengths.

4 ways to boost exports of Iowa services

  • Identify service companies currently exporting through existing industry meetings.
  • Identify service companies that are under-exporting and firms  with export potential.
  • Promote the Study Iowa Program to attract more international students at Central Iowa colleges and universities.
  • Conduct an international insurance symposium in Des Moines (planned for spring 2014).