Sri Lankan government says country’s exports in 2017 has hit an all-time high of US$ 11.4 billion
The Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade of Sri Lanka has reportedly said that the country’s exports in 2017 has hit an all-time high of US$ 11.4 billion, which is a 10% increase from 2016 and surpassed the previous best of US$ 11.1 billion achieved in 2014.
The Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade has noted that the EU and the US were the biggest markets taking US$ 3 billion each.
According to reports, the sectors showing particularly strong year-on-year growth were tea 20% and fisheries 40%. Tea benefitted from higher prices and enhanced access to Middle Eastern markets, particularly Iran. Fisheries has benefitted from both the lifting of the EU ban in June 2016 and the GSP+ concession in May 2017.
The apparel sector, which accounts for over 40% of all goods exports has recorded a modest 2% growth over 2016.
The Ministry has added that it is encouraging that the past four months showed 10% year-on-year growth as new orders from the EU were secured due to the GSP+ benefit of 12% duty exemption.
The Ministry has further noted that 2018 was expected to be a strong year for apparel manufacturers. Services exports comprising ICT/BPM, logistics, financial services and construction have contributed an additional US$ 3.7 billion of exports, an increase of 8% compared to 2016.
The growth in services in 2017 was significant compared to 2016 where ICT/BPM grew at 7.7% and logistics at 5%, according to reports.
Meanwhile, the 40% foreign ownership restriction will be removed from freight forwarding to facilitate investment in the sector.
Export Development Board (EDB) Chairperson Indira Malwatte has said, “Our export results are particularly noteworthy given the global trading environment. Our peer nations have experienced material declines in trade in the past year, while Sri Lanka has maintained growth. This is a testament to the tenacity of our exporters and the relentless enhancement of their value proposition to customers.”
The announcement by the Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade of the country’s exports hitting an all-time high of US$ 11.4 billion in 2017 as well as the increase in exports orders due to the EU’s GSP Plus facility indicates a strong growth in Sri Lanka’s trade sector. Given the statistics by the Ministry, Sri Lanka is definitely an attractive destination for foreign investors to carry out businesses seeking good returns.
|Article Code :||VBS/AT/20180124/Z_1|