Sri Lankas trade deficit for February contracted marginally, on the back of a lower import bill and a drop in apparel sector revenues, the Central Bank said Monday.
Trade deficit for February fell to US$ 90 mn from US$ 119 mn in 2003, bringing the cumulative deficit for Jan-Feb down to US$ 242 mn.rn
rnA general lean period in the apparel sector pulled exports down by five-percent to US$ 390 mn, though cumulative export earnings for the first two months were up 10 percent to US$ 850 mn in February.rn
rnApparel exports, the countrys top money-spinner, saw its revenues fall four-percent to US$ 193 mn in February 2004.rn
rnldblquote Generally, the first quarter of a year is a lean period for industrial exports in Sri Lanka, as this is the off peak season for the garment industry,
dblquote the Bank explained.rn
rnFollowing this general seasonal pattern, Industrial exports fell four-percent in Feb. due to a drop in machinery, mechanical and electrical equipment (down 22 percent