Sri Lanka June trade gap narrows as imports fall sharply

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s trade deficit narrowed to 316 million US dollars in June 2019 from a year ago, the lowest since October 2010, as imports fell sharply while export earnings grew, the central bank said.

Export earnings grew 5.8 percent in June 2019 from the previous year to 1,084 million dollars, the 28th consecutive monthly rise, mainly supported by an increase in industrial exports, a statement said.

“Earnings from industrial exports increased in June 2019 mainly due to the improved performance in textiles and garments rubber product s and transport equipment.”

Export earnings from textiles and garment s increased by 11.4 percent in June 2019 benefiting from higher demand for garment exports from both the traditional and non traditional markets.

Spending on imports fell 23.1 percent to 1,400 million dollars in June 2019 from a year ago.

“All three major categories of imports; consumer goods, investment goods and intermediate goods contributed to the decline in June 2019,” the central bank said.

Spending on consumer goods imports reduced by 39.4 percent in June 2019 due to lower imports of all non food consumer goods, particularly  personal motor vehicles

“Spending on food and beverages imports also decreased reflecting lower outlays in almost all sub categories except seafood, cereals and milling industry products,” the statement said.
(COLOMBO, 20 August, 2019)