COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s exports fell 18.7% to US$ 817.5 million in December 2015 from a year earlier while imports fell at a slower 8.5% to US$ 1,644.7 million, Central Bank official data showed.
The trade gap widens 4.4% to US$ 827.3 million from a year earlier.
On a cumulative basis, the trade deficit during 2015 expanded marginally by 1.7% to US$ 8,430 million over 2014.
Earnings from exports during 2015 decreased by 5.6% to US$ 10,505 million while expenditure on imports declined by 2.5% to US$ 18,935 million.
The Central Bank said it reflected the subdued global demand and lower commodity prices.
“Lower performance in tea, rubber products, textile and garments and seafood exports contributed mainly for the drop in exports,” the Bank said.
“Significant decline recorded in fuel import bill due to lower oil prices and lower thermal power generation caused for the decline in import expenditure,”
“The leading markets for merchandise exports of Sri Lanka during 2015 continued to be the USA, UK, India, Germany and Italy accounting for about 51% of total exports, while the main import origins continued to be India, China, Japan, UAE and Singapore accounting for about 60% of total imports.”