Tea exports set for year record
Sri Lanka’s tea exports rose more than 40 per cent in the first eight
months of the year and are on track to earn a record 1.4 billion dollars
this year, the Tea Board said Thursday.
Tea shipments climbed 41 percent to 883 million dollars from January
to August over the same period a year earlier, helped by strong demand
from Russia and the oil exporting nations of the Middle East, the Sri
Lanka Tea Board said in a statement.
Sri Lanka, which is the world’s largest exporter of tea after Kenya,
has benefited from the recent global commodity boom, analysts say.
“We’ve enjoyed good weather and companies have applied fertiliser at the
right time despite high world prices (for fertilisers),” Senior Vice
President of Asia Siyaka Commodity Brokers, Anil Cooke said. Tea is of
crucial importance to the Sri Lankan economy since it is the country’s
biggest agricultural export.
Sri Lanka’s tea shipments climbed 9.7 percent to 220.3 million
kilogrammes (484.6 million pounds) for the eight months to August from
the corresponding period in 2007.
Sri Lankan tea, marketed under the name Ceylon Tea, is the country’s
third largest foreign currency revenue earner. Remittances from Sri
Lankans working abroad and garment exports are the two top earners.
The country earned a record US $ 1.02 billion from tea in 2007 and is
on track to better its performance and hit a record 1.4 billion dollars
this calendar year, said Tea Board chairman Lalith Hettiarachchi.