To check this claim, FactCheck consulted the Annual Imports Statistics published by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for 2019 and 2020 under the External Sector Statistics and Monthly Economic Indicators which give provisional import data. FactCheck considers the MP to comparing import value of the first 11 months of 2020 data against the previous year – the months for which data would have been available at the time the statement was made.
The data (in Exhibit) shows that value of sugar and confectionery imports have increased from USD 179.9 million in 2019 to USD 247.4 million in 2020. This is a 37.5% increase. Oils and fats imports have increased from USD 25.7 million in 2019 to USD 86.7 million in 2020. This amounts to a 237.2% increase. Both these numbers align with the claim made by the MP.
Therefore, we classify the MP’s statement as TRUE.
*FactCheck’s verdict is based on the most recent information that is publicly accessible. As with every fact check, if new information becomes available, FactCheck will revisit the assessment.
Central Bank of Sri Lanka, External Sector Statistics, Exports, Imports and Trade, Imports – Annual (1990 to Latest) Table, available at: https://www.cbsl.gov.lk/en/statistics/statistical-tables/External-Sector [last accessed 26 March 2021]
Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Economic Indicators Statistics, Monthly Economic Indicators, Monthly Economic Indicators – December 2020 Table, available at: https://www.cbsl.gov.lk/statistics/economic-indicators/monthly-indicators [last accessed 26 March 2021]