Business & Economy

Sri Lanka records first merchandise trade surplus in two decades

Colombo, Jul 31 (EFE).- Sri Lanka’s central bank on Sunday reported the country’s first merchandise trade surplus since 2002 following an uptick in the export of textiles, garments, petroleum products, gems, diamonds and jewellery.

“The balance in the merchandise trade account in June 2022 recorded a surplus of $21 million, compared to the deficit of $652 million recorded in June 2021, and for the first time since August 2002, where a trade surplus of $110 million was recorded,” the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) stated.

The surplus reflected the “ impact of historically high monthly export earnings and the continued decline in import expenditure.”

As it struggles to find sufficient foreign exchange, the cash-strapped island nation has cut down on non-essential imports, drastically reducing its intake of machinery, telecommunication devices, base metals and sugar.

“Earnings from tourism recorded an increase in June 2022 (year-on-year) from the low base, despite the negative sentiments associated with travel advisories and the ongoing shortage of fuel and resultant transportation difficulties,” the CBSL added.

Workers’ remittances, Sri Lanka’s main foreign exchange earner, have moderated in June 2022 compared to the month before.EFE


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