Sri Lanka's apparel and textile sector exported a record US$4.3bn in2013 and its Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF) has predicted overseas sales will continue rising this year.
The JAAF president Noel Piyatilake told just-style the industry is targeting an ambitious target of US$6bn in exports by 2020, making Sri Lanka one of the world's top 10 apparel exporting countries.
The sixth edition of the Footwear and Leather Fair 2014 exhibition organized by Sri Lanka Export Development Board in collaboration with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Industrial Development Board and Footwear and Leather Products Manufacturers Association kicked off yesterday at the BMICH.
Sri Lanka’s apparel industry is looking towards China this year aimed at finding new brands and increasing chances of promoting garment exports via a new gateway with trade concessions for its existing buyers to the East Asian partner.
But reasons for the shift in market focus would also be due to the fact that industries need to align themselves with wherever the free trade agreements (FTA) are entered into by the government, Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association Chairman Yohan Lawrnce told the Business Times.
The Chinese market is said to have grown in addition to a good demand for luxury goods due to the large spending capacity by its locals. As a result of the rising income levels this new emerging market was today becoming a brand and quality conscious market.
Sri Lanka will continue to receive the benefit of the European Union (EU) GSP facility for another 10 years beginning from January this year, Industry and Commerce Minister Rishard Bathiudeen said yesterday.
He said the EU has been Sri Lanka’s largest trade partner next to the United States and the bilateral trade volume exceeds US $ 5 billion a year.
“Total trade between Sri Lanka and EU which was at US $ 3 billion in 2004 rose to US $ 4,946.18 million in 2012. Apparel, diamonds, tea and rubber products became the major export items,” he said.