Sri Lanka’s exports increase 0.6-Pct in Jan 2015: Central Bank

Mar 24, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s export earnings rose 0.6 per cent to 910 million US dollars in January 2015 form a year earlier led by industrial exports, the Central bank said.

Earnings from industrial exports increased by 0.9 per cent due to an increase in export of petroleum products, machinery and mechanical appliances and leather, travel goods and footwear.
Export earnings from petroleum products increased by 67.3 per cent to 56 million US dollars, data showed.

Food, beverages and tobacco earnings declined by 44.4 per cent to 21 million US dollars, while export of rubber products declined by 12.3 per cent to 64 million US dollars with a significant decline in rubber tyre exports despite the increase in exports of surgical and other gloves.

Meanwhile, export earnings from textiles and garments declined marginally by 0.5 per cent to 410 million US dollars reflecting declines in garment exports to both traditional and non-traditional markets.

Earnings from agricultural exports declined marginally by 0.6 per cent due to lower international commodity prices.

Earnings from tea exports recorded a decline of 2.2 per cent in value terms due to lower prices in spite of a volume increase of 11.9 per cent.

Expenditure on imports increased marginally by 1.6 per cent to 1,682 million US dollars in January 2015 from an year earlier with increases in consumer and investment good imports.

The major contribution to the increase in imports came from consumer goods mainly due to higher imports of rice and personal motor vehicles.

Continuing the increasing trend observed since April 2014, the expenditure on rice imports increased to 55 million US dollars in January 2015 in comparison to US dollars 1.6 million in the corresponding month of 2014 due to lower domestic production.

Meanwhile, personal motor vehicle imports increased by 115.8 per cent, due to the impact of changes in the import tariff structure for motor vehicles as well as the depreciation of the Japanese Yen.

The trade deficit in January 2015 widened to US dollars 772 million in comparison to 752 million US dollars a year earlier.