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Sri Lanka external trade expands in AugustFriday, October 10, 2014 > 09:00:23
Sri Lanka's exports rose 7.9 percent, to 991.3 million US dollars in August 2014 from a year earlier with 85.6 percent contribution of apparel exports, official data showed.
Apparel exports grew 17.0 percent to 428.6 million US dollars in August 2014, the Central Bank said.
Exports of machinery and mechanical items had risen 17.6 percent to 32.1 million US dollars and rubber products had risen 6.1 percent to 82.4 million US dollars.
Agricultural exports were down 3.1 percent to 239.4 million US dollars with tea shrinked 2.8 percent to 138.9 million US dollars. Spices export also were down 45.5 percent to 24.1 million US dollars.
Imports grew 16.9 percent to 1,725 million US dollars with consumer goods up 23.0 percent including 48.7 percent growth to 102.2 million dollars of motor cars. Intermediate goods were up 21.1 percent to 1,061.5 million US dollars with fuel imports up 21.0 percent to 472 million US dollars.
Investment goods imports were slightly up by 1.1 percent to 334 million US dollars with machinery and equipment down 1.2 percent to 170.4 percent while transport equipment also down 9.9 percent to 41.3 million US dollars and building materials up 9.1 percent to 122.1 million US dollars.
As the growth of imports weighed on the export earnings, the trade deficit widened to US dollars 733 million in August 2014, compared to US dollars 556 million in August 2013.
Trade deficits are caused when market participants in a country earn and spend money from selling abroad sources other than goods.
In August worker remittances (exports of labour) rose 1.5 percent to 548 million US dollars, and tourism earnings rose 22.2 percent to 202.2 million US dollars.
In the eight months to August exports up 14.8 percent to 7,385 million US dollars, imports up 4.6 percent to 12,555 million US dollars and the trade gap declined 7.1 percent.
Worker remittances rose 10 percent to 4,515 million US dollars in the eight months and tourism earnings rose 32.1 percent to 1,442.2 million US dollars.
Long term loans obtained by the government during the year to end August 2014 amounted to US dollars 1,173 million, compared to US dollars 1,156 million during the corresponding period in 2013. Net inflows to the Government securities market from January to end August 2014 amounted to US dollars 218 million, which comprised net inflows to Treasury bills and Treasury bonds amounting to US dollars 37 million and US dollars 181 million, respectively.
Foreign Investments in the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) recorded a net outflow of US dollars 28 million in August 2014 compared to the net inflow of US dollars 18 million recorded in the corresponding period in 2013. However, on a cumulative basis, foreign investments in the CSE up to end August 2014 recorded a net inflow of US dollars 56.7 million.
Inflows to Licensed Commercial Banks (LCBs) and Licensed Specialised Banks (LSBs) during the first eight months in 2014 amounted to US dollars 200 million.