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Exports mark a remarkable surge of 17 percent
Jul '08
Exports from Sri Lanka touched US $746 million in May 2008 mounting by 17.0 percent over last year. This remarkable growth has been recorded largely due to export earnings from diamonds, jewelry, garments and textiles.

However, a major chunk of the contribution was made by the agricultural sector reflecting the impact of hike in global food and energy prices.

On the other hand, mineral exports including gems held a one percent share in total exports and which fell over the previous year. However, cumulative exports during the period January to May 2008 registered a growth of 12.6 percent over the corresponding period last year, amounting to $3,234 million.

Import value touched $1.258 million in the month of May increasing by 24.2 percent over the previous year.

Like always, spending on imports of petroleum continued to increase accounting for 58.3 percent of the increase in import expenditure in May 2008.

Imports excluding petroleum grew by 25.1 per cent to US dollars 4,360 million for the first five-months of 2008.

Besides, capital goods imports also increased and accounted for 5.5 percent of the increase in import expenditure in May this year. Cumulative expenditure on imports during the period January to May 2008 grew by 34.8 percent when compared with the corresponding period last year, and amounted to $5,813 million.

While the overall balance of payments recorded a surplus of $292 million by the end of May 2008, gross official reserves amounted to $3,355 million.

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