The country’s tea exports dipped for the second consecutive month year-on-year in October, though cumulative performance keeps the industry afloat.
Quantity shipped dipped by 1.35 million kilos to 28.06 million kilos and Rs. 400 million in value terms to Rs. 14.1 billion over 2010 October performance. In September exports volume of 26.1 million kilos was down 10% over a year ago whilst 16% lower over 31 million kilos shipped in August this year. In September exports value was Rs. 13.1 billion, down by Rs. 1 billion over September of last year.
The only blessing is a rebound in performance in October over September 2011.
Forbes and Walker Tea Brokers said despite value dipping by Rs. 400 million, the total FOB value of Rs.503.47 per kilo in October reflects a growth of Rs.7.92 per kilo over the corresponding month of 2010.
Tea in bulk shows a marginal gain whilst tea in packets and tea in bags show a decrease year on year.
Cumulative exports of January-October 2011 amounted to 265.4 million kilos, up by 9.2 million kilos over the first 10 months of last year.
Revenue from exports were Rs. 135.6 billion up by Rs. 8 billion vis-à-vis Rs.127.6 billion achieved in January to October 2010. Here again FOB value of Rs.510.95 per kg for the period under review show a growth of Rs.12.95 per kg vis-à-vis Rs.498 per kg of 2010.
Tea in bulk and tea in packets have shown a growth in volume YoY. Tea in bags and green tea however show a decline as against the corresponding period of 2010.
Major importers of Sri Lankan tea continue to be led by CIS followed by Iran and Syria. Other noteworthy importers are UAE, Iraq and Turkey.
In September the industry crossed the US$ 1 billion export mark, an achievement made faster than 2010. Overall in 2010 the country went on to earn a record US$ 1.37 billion.