Business Tips

STRUCTURE / TREND OF TRADING 

Export and Import Performance:

The external sector performance improved in July 2015, year-on-year, with a lower trade deficit and strong tourist earnings. The increase in the cumulative trade deficit in July was 6 per cent, down from 15.6 per cent recorded in June this year, due to a sharp deceleration in imports during July 2015. The deficit in the trade account in July 2015 contracted substantially by 32.3 per cent to US dollars 602 million in comparison to US dollars 889 million in July 2014. However, on a cumulative basis, trade deficit during the first seven months of 2015 increased by 6.0 per cent to US dollars 4,688 million. In terms of export performance, export earnings dropped by 2.6 per cent to US dollars 932 million in July 2015, reflecting a year-on-year decline in both industrial and agricultural exports. On a cumulative basis, earnings from exports declined marginally by 0.9 per cent during the first seven months of the year mainly due to the lower performance of agricultural exports despite the positive growth in industrial exports. Expenditure on imports decreased by 16.9 per cent, year-on-year, to US dollars 1,534 million in July 2015 mainly due to the base effect as July 2014 recorded the highest monthly import value after November 2012. In addition, reduction in fuel imports bill also contributed for the overall decline in import expenditure.

Source: External Sector Performance–July 2015, Central Bank of Sri Lanka

External Trade

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

Trade balance (US$ million)

-1,798

-5,981

-3,122

-4,825

-9,710

-9,417

-7,609

-8,287

Exports (n)

5,522

8,111

7,085

8,626

10,559

9,774

10,394

11,130

Imports (n)

7,320

14,091

10,207

13,451

20,269

19,190

18,003

19,417

Source: Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Annual Report 2014 Direction of Trade

Industrialized countries continue to be the major destinations of Sri Lankan exports. USA accounted for 25% of the exports ranking as the major export market of Sri Lanka. In respect to the imports, Asian countries are the major importers of Sri Lanka. India remains as the largest source of imports of Sri Lanka, products accounting to 21% of its imports.

Exports by destination

Year

USA

Asia

UK

Germany

Belgium

Others in EU

Middle East

Others countries

2009

22%

13%

14%

5%

5%

14%

12%

15%

2014

25%

16%

10%

4%

3%

14%

11%

17%

Source: Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Annual Report 2014

Imports by origin

Year

USA

Asia- Other

Singapore

China

Middle East

EU

India

Other

2009

3%

20%

10%

10%

15%

13%

18%

11%

2014

3%

18%

6%

18%

14%

8%

21%

12%

Source: Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Annual Report 2014

Market Trends for Export Products / Services

  • Apparel
  • Coconut and Coconut Based Products
  • Floriculture
  • Fruit & Vegetables
  • Giftware and Toys
  • ICT BPO
  • Seafood

Source: Sri Lanka Export Development Board

Market Trends for Import Products / Services

  • Refined Petroleum
  • Crude Petroleum
  • Light Rubberized Knitted Fabric
  • Cars, Delivery trucks and motorcycles
  • Wheat
  • Cement
  • Packaged Medicaments
  • Electric Items

Source: atlas.media.mit.edu