Highest Value Sri Lankan Import Products

Sri Lankan shopkeeper

Sri Lankan shopkeeper

Refined petroleum and crude oils were among the 20 highest value Sri Lankan import products in 2016.

The most valuable Sri Lankan imports also include cars, trucks and motorocycles. Smartphones is another imported item where Sri Lanka has demonstrably strong domestic demand as is imported medication mixes in dosage.

The following list shows on which product categories Sri Lankan importers spent the most. Unlike most information currently available on the web, the items below are detailed at the 4-digit tariff code level.

Such granularity can help entrepreneurs identify more precisely which products in which Sri Lanka has strong demand perhaps competitive disadvantages compared with other nations. Innovation satisfying that demand can transform these disadvantages into lucrative business opportunities.

Highest Value Sri Lankan Import Products

Below are the 20 highest value import products delivered to Sri Lankan importers in 2016. Shown within brackets is the change in value for each imported product since 2012.

  1. Processed petroleum oils: US$1.4 billion (Down -31.1% from 2012 to 2016)
  2. Cars: $633.8 million (Up 25.7%)
  3. Fabrics other than warp-knit: $602.1 million (Up 17.6%)
  4. Hydraulic cements: $536.2 million (Up 34.5%)
  5. Crude oil: $488.6 million (Down -62.1%)
  6. Phone system devices including smartphones: $452.2 million (Up 65.3%)
  7. Medication mixes in dosage: $401.1 million (Up 38.1%)
  8. Gold (unwrought): $374.9 million (Up 124.7%)
  9. Sugar (cane or beet): $334.8 million (Up 0.8%)
  10. Woven fabrics (85%+ cotton): $299.3 million (Down -9.4%)
  11. Trucks: $273.9 million (Down -36%)
  12. Aircraft, spacecraft: $267.9 million (Up 7,407%)
  13. Iron or non-alloy steel products (semi-finished): $245.5 million (Down -2.4%)
  14. Dried shelled vegetables: $233.9 million (Up 85%)
  15. Concentrated/sweetened milk, cream: $230.9 million (Down -20.6%)
  16. Wheat: $230.2 million (Down -29.8%)
  17. Motorcycles: $222.6 million (Up 73.5%)
  18. Light vessels, fire boats, floating docks: $220.2 million (Up 7,427%)
  19. Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $195.9 million (Up 64%)
  20. Miscellaneous iron and steel structures: $184 million (Up 157.8%)

Among these product categories, light vessels, fire boats and floating docks posted the greatest increase in Sri Lankan import purchases with a 7,407% gain in value from $2.9 million in 2012.

In second place were imported aircraft and spacecraft which appreciated 157.8% over the same 5-year period.

Sri Lankan imports of unwrought gold also showed a respectable gain in 2016 up 124.7% from 2012, followed by import purchases of dried shelled vegetables up 85%.

Leading the value decliners was imported crude oil (down -62.1%).

See also Sri Lanka’s Top 10 Exports and Sri Lanka’s Top 10 Imports

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on July 23, 2017

The World Factbook, Field Listing: Imports and World Population, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on July 23, 2017

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on July 23, 2017