US seeks to improve bilateral trade with Sri Lanka 

The US has stated its willingness to cooperate in providing Sri Lanka with technical assistance for capacity building and skill development to improve bilateral trade, as discussed at the Joint Council Meeting of the US-Sri Lanka Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA).

At the meeting, discussions also focussed on market access, trade and investment policy reforms of Sri Lanka, trade facilitation, intellectual property rights, development and innovation in the digital economy, government procurement, the environment and trade capacity building.

The US remains Sri Lanka’s single largest trading partner and accounts for over 12 percent of the island’s external trade. Apparel products represent nearly 70 percent of exports while the remaining products include solid tyres, pneumatic rubber tyres, rubber gloves, vulcanised rubber articles, tea, fisheries products, cinnamon, activated carbon and precious stones.

Sri Lanka imported an estimated US$ 645 million in goods from the US in 2018 – this included products such as aircraft, turbojets, turbo propellers, gas turbines, and medical instruments and appliances.

With two-way trade amounting to 3,729 million dollars, 2018 witnessed the highest value of bilateral trade between the two countries.