Sri Lankas trade deficit widened to Rs. 271 million by February, fuelled by higher imports of consumer and intermediary goods.
The Central Bank on Monday said the total import bill for 2003 had reached Rs. 1.03 billion, an 18 per cent increase over 2002, while exports peaked at Rs. 767 million up from Rs. 714 million in the previous year. rn
rnThe Bank said imports of non food consumer goods like TV sets, motor vehicles and tyres and tubes rose 34 per cent in February.rn
rnImport of petroleum products, fertiliser, and diamonds along with other intermediate goods grew by 28 per cent over February 2002. rn
rnIn the export sectors, earnings from textile and garments increased 4 per cent to US 201 million due to an increase in unit price. rn
rnOther industrial exports increases 23 per cent driven by 13 per cent increase in machinery and mechanical/electronic equipment, a 4 per cent rise in rubber based products, an 86 per cent increase in crustaceans and molluscs and other fish products and a 32 p