ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka’s seafood exports to the European Union picked up 19.9 percent in July 2016 from a year earlier, following the lifting of a ban, and apparel exports rose 3 percent, but lower commodity prices have hit petroleum and tea.
Exports fell 4.4 percent to $891.2 million in July 2016 from a year earlier and imports fell 6.6 percent to $1,432 million dollars, shrinking the trade balance 10 percent to $541 million, official data showed.
Worker remittances were down 4.4 percent to $572.8 million, but tourism receipts rose 19.1 percent to $347 million.
Exports fell amid lower commodity prices and a drought. Tea exports fell 14.8 percent to $108 million, with weak demand from Russia and the Middle East, the Central Bank said.
Seafood exports continued to be weak, but exports to the European Union had picked up 19.9 percent following the lifting of a ban.
Apparel exports had grown 3 percent to $426 million in July from a year earlier.
Lower bunkering volumes and low prices reduced petroleum exports 24.7 percent.
In the first seven months, exports were down 5.6 percent to $5,998 million, imports were down 2.9 percent to $10,753 million and the trade balance was up 0.7 percent to $4,754 million.