Exports outgrow import growth

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Sri Lanka’s trade deficit expanded more than 6.2 per cent to USD 3,131 million during the first four months of this year from USD 2,948 million a year ago, as imports to the country during the four months expanded 8.9 per cent as against an export growth of 11 per cent.

According to data released by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka during April this year, the trade deficit contracted more than 18 per cent to USD 729 million from USD 889 million a year ago.

Though Sri Lanka is facing a major United State dollar crisis, the country has imported goods worth USD 7,350 million during the first four months, up 8.9 per cent compared to USD 6,748 million a year ago.

In April, Sri Lanka imported goods worth USD 1,699 million, down 0.5 per cent compared to USD 1,707 million.

Export earnings during the first four months this year reached USD 4,219 million, up 11 per cent compared to USD 3,800 million a year ago.

In April, Sri Lanka exported goods worth USD 970 million, up 18.5 per cent compared to USD 818 million.

An increase in earnings was observed in industrial exports and agricultural exports, while a decline was recorded in mineral exports.

Earnings from the export of industrial goods increased in April 2022 by 21.9 per cent, compared to April 2021.

A broad-based increase in earnings among industrial goods has been recorded, with the greatest share for the overall increase being contributed by garments and petroleum products

Total earnings from the exports of agricultural goods in April 2022 increased by 7.3 per cent, compared to April 2021.

Earnings from mineral exports in April 2022 nearly halved compared to April 2021, mainly due to a decline in export earnings from titanium ores categorised under ores, slag and ash.

On the importation front, a decline in expenditure was observed in import of non-food consumer goods and investment goods, while an increase was recorded in import of food and intermediate goods.

Expenditure on the importation of consumer goods declined by 15.4 per cent in April 2022, compared to April 2021, due to the 43.4 per cent reduction in non-food consumer goods imports.

Expenditure on the importation of intermediate goods increased by 11.3 per cent in April 2022, compared to a year ago, driven by imports of fuel and textile and articles.

Import expenditure on investment goods declined by 24.6 per cent in April 2022, compared to April 2021.