SALT LAKE CITY — The export of goods and products from Utah is growing faster than any other state in the country. In fact, during the past five years, Utah is the only state to have doubled its volume of exports.

In 2010, Utah shipped $13.57 billion in merchandise exports to international markets and the state is positioned to grow exports significantly, according to the Governor's Office of Economic Development.

"In 2006, Utah exports were $6.8 billion," said Craig Peterson, GOED International Trade and Diplomacy director. "In 2009, they were $10.3 billion, and this year, they're $13.6 billion."

He said Gov. Gary Herbert has challenged businesses throughout the state to double their output of exports from 2009. And reaching that $20 billion goal by 2014 is certainly an achievable objective, he added.

The data was compiled by the U.S. International Trade Administration and U.S. Census Bureau.

Peterson said direct export supported jobs linked to manufacturing in Utah account for an estimated 93,000 jobs for Utahns.

There were 2,800 Utah companies involved in exports.

With exports' critical impact on Utah's economy in mind, it is especially significant that the U.S. government announced that Utah's exports are showing a 31 percent increase over the previous record set in 2009, Peterson added.

According to the Kauffman Foundation's 2010 New State Economy Index, Utah ranked No. 6 overall in its annual ranking report, taking over the top spot as most-improved export state.

Electric machinery grew at 63 percent; aerospace grew at 18 percent; and industrial machinery, including computers, grew 12 percent.

"The state of Utah is perfectly poised to double export numbers in the next five years," said Lew Cramer, president and chief executive officer of the World Trade Center of Utah. "Being recognized as the only state in the nation to double its exports over the past five years is another key validation that Utah is becoming more globally focused."