Sri Lanka’s apparel sector surpassed $5 bn in export earnings in 2018 and targets $8 bn by 2025. The earnings from export of apparel falling under Harmonised System (HS) chapters 61, 62 and 63 amounted to $5,050 mn in 2018, registering an increase of 4.79 per cent compared to $4819 mn in 2017, according to the Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF).

Developed by the World Customs Organisation (WCO), HS is a multipurpose international goods nomenclature used as the basis for customs tariffs and for the compilation international trade statistics all over the world.

The United States and the European Union (EU) continued to be the two largest buyers of Sri Lankan garments, in both volume and value terms, a top financial daily in the country reported citing a JAAF statement.

The export turnover target of $8 bn by 2025 requires an annual growth of 6 per cent, a very ambitious target and therefore market access programs through regional, multilateral, or bilateral trade arrangements are extremely important, particularly with emerging markets such as India, China and Brazil, the statement added.