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Apparel Exports from Sri Lanka to the EU: A product level analysis of the impact of GSP+

Concerns about Sri Lanka losing GSP+ concessions resurfaced with the EU parliament passing a resolution on June 10th, 2021, calling the EU Commission and the European External Action Service (EEAS) to use GSP+ as leverage to push for the repeal or replacement of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). For Sri Lanka, a major area of concern is the impact of the above on apparel exports to the EU, a key beneficiary of the concessions. Apparel contributes the most to Sri Lanka’s export revenue, accounting for 40-45% of the country’s total exports and the EU is the second largest market for Sri Lankan apparel after the USA, making up 42% of Sri Lanka’s total apparel exports between 2015-2019.

This working paper thus aims to evaluate the impact of GSP plus at a product level, based on the level of utilization of the concessions. It reviews the disaggregated impact of losing GSP+ concessions on individual products at the HS 6-digit level. It does so by assessing the reliance on GSP+ of the top 20 apparel products exported to the EU. These products account for 74% of the value of total apparel exports from Sri Lanka to the EU.

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Last modified: December 5, 2023