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EU gives Sri Lanka a helping hand to boost exports

Sri Lanka needs to diversify its exports. In 2016 half of Sri Lanka’s total revenues were from the textile and garment sector and this ratio has remained the same for several years as Sri Lanka's export basket has not changed much since the 1990s.

If Sri Lanka is to substantially increase export revenues, diversifying to new sectors is the key to success. Similarly diversification of markets is also a priority for Sri Lanka.

While the UK is currently an important market for Sri Lanka, with Brexit becoming a reality, Sri Lanka will benefit if it also focuses attention on accessing non-traditional markets among the EU countries. This will not only cushion the potential negative impact of Brexit on Sri Lanka but will also help contribute towards the country’s target of doubling its export revenues.

The EU aims to support Sri Lanka’s economic growth by launching a series of initiatives which includes: support to design and implement a coherent trade strategy for export competitiveness, support for trade policy development and regulatory reforms, enhancement of Sri Lanka's WTO trade negotiations capacity, support Sri Lanka's regional integration process and help Sri Lanka maximize the use of the EU GSP Plus scheme when it is granted.