Sri Lanka tea bag exports fall sharply

COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Sri Lankan tea bag exports fell sharply in March 2015 from a year ago with total export volumes and earnings also down, worsening an industry downturn triggered by troubles in key overseas markets.

Tea exports for March 2015 fell 19 percent or 5.8 million kilos to 25.1 million kg from the same month last year, "a fairly significant decrease," Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers said.

Tea export earnings fell 26 percent or by 5.2 billion rupees to 15 billion rupees in March 2015 when compared to March 2014.

Earnings from exports of tea bags, on which margins are higher, fell almost 27 percent to 2.2 billion rupees, the brokers said, with a fairly significant 700,000 kg decrease in shipments.

Tea export earnings have been falling throughout this year owing to a weaker rouble in Russia, one of the biggest markets, and political and economic troubles in other big Middle Eastern markets.

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