SL to hit the US $19 billion export target in 2023 despite decline in September
By: Staff Writer
Colombo (LNW): Even in the wake of a 10 percent decline in export earnings in September to US$ 972 million, Sri Lanka expects to earn US$19 billion this year from the export of goods and services, the Ministry of Investment Promotion said.
The ministry said in a statement that the country will earn 14.8 billion dollars from the export of commercial goods, and the remaining 4.2 billion dollars from the export of services.
The ministry has implemented several strategies ata cost of $ 700,000 to achieve this target, including boosting the reputation of Sri Lankan exports, value addition and branding of products, increasing the access to new markets, increasing the number of exporters, and increasing the efficiency of the export sector.
Earnings from merchandise exports declined by 10 per cent to US dollars 972 million in September 2023, over the corresponding month in 2022 as well as compared to US dollars 1,119 million recorded in August 2023, Central BANK report revealed.
Despite the increase in agricultural exports, the decline in earnings from industrial exports associated with slowing external demand, including garments, mainly contributed to this contraction in export earnings in September 2023, compared to a year earlier.
Cumulative export earnings also declined by 10.1 per cent during January to September 2023 to US dollars 8,982 million, over the same period in the last year.
Industrial Exports: Earnings from the exports of industrial goods declined in September 2023, with a significant share of the decline being contributed by garments. Accordingly, exports of garments to most of the major markets (the USA, the EU, and the UK) recorded declines.
Further, declines were recorded in the export of gems, diamonds and jewellery; machinery and mechanical appliances(mainly, electronic equipment); and chemical products (mainly, activated carbon), among others.
However, earnings from petroleum products increased in September 2023 due to the increase in volumes of bunker and aviation fuel exports.
Agricultural Exports: Earnings from the exports of agricultural goods improved in September 2023, compared to a year ago, mainly due to the increase in earnings from seafood (primarily, fresh fish),coconut related products and tea.
An increase of earnings from tea resulted from the higher export volumes although the unit price of tea exports in September 2023 was lower than a year earlier.
Meanwhile, there was a decline in export earnings from spices (mainly, cinnamon), natural rubber and unmanufactured tobacco.
Mineral Exports: Earnings from mineral exports declined in September 2023, compared to September2022, mainly due to the decline in export earnings from titanium ores.