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Healthy growth in apparel exports
22
Apr '09
Despite the global economic downturn, Sri Lanka Customs data just released show a healthy growth in apparel exports in 2009

Overall apparel exports in January 2009 had a growth of 4.1% and 7.9% in February 2009 when compared over the corresponding period in 2008.

Apparel exporters attribute this growth to the timely measures taken by the Government in announcing the Export Development Reward Scheme allowing the companies to offer competitive prices.

When contacted, Ajith Dias, Chairman of Joint Apparel Association Forum commented that's the timeliness of the Government's announcement late December detailing the reward scheme for exporters announced in the budget was crucial. It gave the exporters the confidence to chase orders in an extremely competitive environment and the first two months performance is encouraging.

Mr Dias further added that although the comprehensive package contained stringent criteria in terms of sustaining export levels and employment levels, the incentive offered was sufficient to boost our exports and we are certainly appreciative of the efforts by the Government to offer a workable package.

The apparel industry has a proven track record of steering through trying times and similarly the industry has re-adjusted to face this crisis.

Further, the recent decision by the Minister of Labour Relations and Manpower with regard to the five-day work week and the temporary layoff of workers will help during this difficult period.

The apparel industry continues to be the leading export revenue earner to the country and the largest employer.

Joint Apparel Association Forum

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