Sri Lanka Exports to SASEC Countries up by 8%

9 May 2019

Sri Lanka’s exports to South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) member countries have increased from 6% to 8% in the 13-year-period from 2002 to 2015. India is Sri Lanka’s largest export market among SASEC countries, with 83% of its exports going to India. India is also Sri Lanka’s largest source of imports, with 99% of SASEC-country imports coming from India. This is according to the study Potential Exports and Nontariff Barriers to Trade: Sri Lanka National Study done by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

According to the ADB national diagnostic study, sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) and technical barriers to trade (TBT) result in low volume of trade with Bhutan and Nepal. Analysis shows legal, institutional, and infrastructure gaps in Sri Lanka’s SPS structure. These include weak coordination among regulatory authorities and shortage of laboratory facilities for testing new products and services. The study also notes the need for the Sri Lanka Standard, a national product certification mark, to be accredited and recognized internationally to help Sri Lanka exports.

The study presents practical recommendations for developing a legislative and regulatory framework environment, institutional and capacity frameworks, and SPS-TBT-related infrastructure.


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