The opening of global markets allowed almost all the nations of the planet to trade with each other without too many setbacks. The result? A world increasingly connected, but also more specialized.
If we look at Europe, for example, most of the continental countries make a lot of money selling modes of transport. Germany is the queen of the automobile industry, of course, followed by Spain and seconded by Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Romania and many others. France falls into the same category: its main export are the aeronautical parts.
Italy, Ireland, Austria and Denmark opt for medicines, and only a few for petroleum products (Sweden, the Netherlands, Portugal) or for the same oil (only Norway, plus Russia).
We jump to South America. The panorama? Radically different: almost all Latin countries choose to fully exploit their natural resources. Peru and Chile export copper in different ways. Ecuador and Venezuela depend heavily on crude, while almost all Andean countries not so favored by oil opt for copper mines and for their refined products. In Paraguay, electricity reigns (thanks, dams) and in Brazil and Argentina, soybeans. Even Uruguay, whose main export is pulp of treated cellulose.
Further north something similar happens, although with notable exceptions. The main one is Mexico, whose industrial growth during the last decades has been very remarkable. Its main export are also cars, the European way. The United States and Canada are very clear about what they can sell better than anyone: oil (refined first, crude second). For the American case, the fracking trend will reinforce the position of the crude.
In Africa, countries depend on their natural resources more than anywhere else. Only in Tunisia (isolated wiring) and in the Central African Republic, one of the poorest countries in the world, the main export is manufactured (delivery trucks, if applicable). The horn of Africa focuses on agricultural products (coffee, tea, goats and sheep in Somalia), West Africa on gold, wood and cotton, North Africa on oil and derivatives, and the south on resources minerals
Asia is different. Beyond the Middle East (oil is the king), manufactures that are collaborating to shoot the economies of a lot of countries triumph. Bangladesh? The textile. China and Thailand? Computers The Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam? Integrated circuits, antennas, television equipment. India sells refined oil. South Korea? technology and electronics.
Beyond very curious cases (the main export of Afghanistan is the grape). Africa and South America provide most of the natural resources not related to oil, such as minerals or agri-food products; The Middle East, North Africa and North America pull oil; Southeast Asia of computer science and technology; and Europe of cars and planes.
As for imports, South America clings to refined oil; Europe continues to buy items related to transport (except in countries that are very exporting and lacking in oil, such as Spain or Poland); The United States and Canada buy cars; and, in general, most of the world imports oil.