Sri Lanka external trade up, apparel exports down

L to R : Suresh de Mel, Nisthar Cassim, Randhula De Silva, Fayaz Hudah, Chandula Abeywickrema, Dr Nirmal De Silva, Anushka Wijesinha, Talal Rafi

May 26, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s external trade expanded in March 2010 with imports growing 6.5 percent to 1090 million US dollars and with exports growing 4.8 percent to 662.7 million rupees and but apparel exports fell. In March apparel exports fell 9.5 percent from a year earlier to 281 million US dollars. The trade deficit expanded 9.3 percent to 427 million US dollars, data released by the Central Bank showed.

In the first quarter apparel exports were down 14.9 percent to 703.2 million US dollars.

March industrial exports were up 5.1 percent with higher revenues from rubber products, diamond and jewellery, petroleum products, machinery and equipment, and food and beverages, the Central Bank said.

In the first quarter exports were up 7.1 percent to 1,763 million US dollars and imports were up 39.5 percent to 3,224.9 million US dollars.

But apparel exports were down 14.9 percent to 703.2 million US dollars in the quarter from a year earlier.

The trade deficit was up 119 percent to 1,461 million US dollars.