- August exports contract by 25% YoY
- “...don’t see much signs of revival of export volumes”- JAAF
- Trend expected to continue into the coming months
- Exports to all markets show negative growth
By Shabiya Ali Ahlam
Dampened performance continues for Sri Lanka’s apparel sector with exports proceeding to move along the negative growth trajectory.
For the month of August, the local apparel sector saw exports contract by 25.66 percent Year-on-Year (YoY). Export earnings dropped from US$ 5324.85 million in August 2022 to US$ 397.61 million in August 2023. “As expected exports in August continue around the US$ 400 million mark down some 20 percent last year.
We still don’t see much signs of revival in export volumes, this trend will continue for the next few months as well,” Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF) Secretary General Yohan Lawrence told Mirror Business.
Out of the key markets, exports to the United States saw the steepest contraction with revenue dropping by 25.89 percent to US$ 170.38 million in August. In the corresponding month the previous year, exports to that market accounted for US$ 229. 91 million.
Similarly, exports to the Europe Union, and the United Kingdom contracted by 24.4 percent and 11.95 percent to US$ 118.23 million and US$ 52.99 million.
Apparel exports to other markets dipped by a staggering 36 .63 percent YoY to US$ 56.01 million.
Cumulative analysis shows that the apparel sector just managed to cross the US$ 3 billion export revenue mark in August. For the January - August 2023 period exports totalled US$ 3.084 billion, a 19.87 percent drop when compared with the corresponding period in 2022. In 2022, January - August exports totalled US$ 3.849 billion.
Here again, exports to all markets saw a double digit contraction, with the steepest being for the United States. Cumulative exports, ending August, to the United States contracted by 24.15 percent to US$ 1.25 billion. Exports to the European Union and the United Kingdom declined by 17.34 percent and 17.31 percent to US$ 925 million and US$ 426 million.
For January - August 2022, cumulative exports to the US, European Union, and the United Kingdom totalled US$ 1.64 billion, US$ 1.11 billion, and US$ 515 million. Exports to other markets dropped by 14.85 percent to US$ 487 million.