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Sri Lanka's trade deficit narrows on 9.4 pct.export growth in AprilMonday, June 23, 2014 > 08:19:02
Sri Lanka's trade deficit narrows on 9.4 pct.export growth in April
COLOMBO, June 20 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka's trade deficit narrowed 17.7 percent to 682 million U.S. dollars as exports grew by 9.4 percent in April when compared with the same period last year, the Central Bank said in its latest report on Friday.
On a year-on-year basis, earnings from exports in April 2014 increased by 9.4 percent to 762 million U.S. dollars, while expenditure on imports declined by 5.3 percent to 1.4 billion U.S. dollars.
The trade deficit contracted by 17.7 percent to 682 million U.S. dollars.
"Cumulative trade deficit for the first four months of 2014 contracted by 12.1 percent, as the growth in export earnings of 16. 9 percent outpaced the 2.6 percent increase in import expenditure, " the report added.
Growth in earnings from exports was led by improved performance in industrial exports which grew by 8 percent, year-on-year, in April 2014 to 559 million dollars.
Industrial exports led by the earnings from export of textiles and garments, increased by 22.5 percent, contributing 94 percent to the total increase in exports.
Industrial exports accounted for more than 73 percent of total exports.
During the month, earnings from export of garments to the European Union (EU) and to the United States increased by 22.3 percent and 21.2 percent, respectively.
"A notable increase of 50.5 percent was observed in export of garments to non-traditional markets such as China, Hong Kong, Japan and Russia, reflecting further diversification of export markets."
Expenditure on imports declined in April 2014 driven by reductions in both consumer and investment goods. Expenditure on consumer goods imports declined by 3.2 per cent in April 2014, reflecting a decline in expenditure on most of food categories.
Sri Lanka's economy is projected to grow by 7.8 percent in 2014 by the Central Bank after recording 7.3 percent last year.