Sri Lanka December 2011 exports up 24-pct

Feb 24, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s exports in December 2011 went up 24 percent to 906 million US dollars from year ago with sharp gains in textiles and rubber products, the central bank said. Imports during the month went up 34 percent to 1.9 billion dollars with spending on investment goods like transport equipment and building materials rising sharply, a statement said.

The trade gap during December 2011 widened 44 percent to just over a billion dollars.

“The expenditure on imports, although increased by 33.7 percent to 1,910 million US dollars in December 2011, decelerated from a year-on-year increase of 78 percent reported for November 2011,” the central bank said.

“The expenditure on imports was driven by continuing demand for investment and intermediate goods.

“Government infrastructure projects financed mainly by foreign loans also raised the demand for investment goods.”

The largest contribution to the export earnings in December 2011 came from industrial exports followed by agricultural exports.

Industrial exports increased by 28.9 percent to 703 million dollars in December 2011 compared to the same month of 2010.

“Among the industrial export