The Embassy of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
Japan was the largest supplier to Sri Lanka until late 1990s. In 2001, India surpassed Japan as the main supplier. From 2017 to 2019 Sri Lanka’s exports to Japan shows a positive trend. The Balance of Trade between the countries has been in favor of Japan. The value of imports which stood at 1,584.76 US$ Mn in 2018 decreased to 875.47 US$ Mn in 2019 by 44.75% compared to 2018.
Japan was the 8 th export market for Sri Lanka with a share of 2.39% in 2019. In 1977, Japan was Sri Lanka’s 6 th export market with a share of 5.21%. Apparel was the dominant export item from Sri Lanka to Japan accounting for 21.15% of total exports to Japan in 2019.
Japan was the 5 th import partner of Sri Lanka with a share of 4.49% in 2019. Motor vehicles for the transport of persons were the major import item from Japan to Sri Lanka which Accounts for 40.58% of total imports from Japan in 2019.
Since 1971, Japan GSP scheme has been granting preferential tariffs to certain developing countries under its Temporary Tariff Measures Law. Sri Lanka is a beneficiary country of this scheme. This scheme which has been granting preferential tariff rate deduction of 4.9 percentage points from 2012 onwards includes concessions for 337 agricultural & fishery products and 3,216 industrial products.
The GOSL on 25th August, 2020 submitted the proposal on the new Japan GSP Scheme, which will be implemented in March 2021. The DOC consulted the government stakeholders, relevant product sectors and trade chambers of Sri Lanka, enabling us to get more market access opportunities in the Japanese market under the new Japan GSP scheme. In this regard the DOC has selected four main product sectors where it can get more market access opportunities and requested more concessions for the products coming under those sectors along with other few products. These 04 sectors include textile and apparel, tea, fisheries and food processing.
Exports from Sri Lanka to Japan under Japan GSP during the last 05 years
In terms of the growing demand pattern in Japan and considering the sustainable supply capacities of Sri Lanka, following products can be further expanded in the Japan market.