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The coir fiber industry in Sri Lanka: Reasons for its decline and possible turnaround strategies


  • H.S. Rohitha Rosairo

    (Department of Agribusiness Management, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, Belihuloya, Sri Lanka)

  • Tamotsu Kawamura

    (Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, 3-18-8 Ueda, Morioka, Iwate 020 8550, Japan)

  • T.L.G. Sanjeewani Peiris

    (Development Finance Corporation of Ceylon, No. 2, Deva Veediya, Kandy, Sri Lanka)


The decline of the coir fiber industry in Sri Lanka, which brings valuable foreign exchange, has been a subject of concern as Sri Lanka is a main supplier of coir fiber to the world market. The repercussions of this decline on the country are enormous. In this article we analyze this crisis situation to find the causative factors and to propose recommendations for the development and sustainability of the industry. The main factors contributing to the crisis are unfavorable trade policies, trade barriers, human resource problems, poor trade behavior, export barriers, poor product marketing strategy, the high cost of production, poor industry regulation, and threats from the global marketing environment. Recommendations for the development of the industry include policy changes, improved working conditions, trade strategies, product diversification, mechanization, quality assurance, market development, strengthening of market position, and regional cooperation. We present a comprehensive long-term strategy for the future development of the coir fiber industry of Sri Lanka. [EconLit citations: O530, Q130, Q170.] © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Agribusiness 20: 495-516, 2004.

Suggested Citation

  • H.S. Rohitha Rosairo & Tamotsu Kawamura & T.L.G. Sanjeewani Peiris, 2004. "The coir fiber industry in Sri Lanka: Reasons for its decline and possible turnaround strategies," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(4), pages 495-516.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:agribz:v:20:y:2004:i:4:p:495-516
    DOI: 10.1002/agr.20071

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bashir A. Qasmi & Scott W. Fausti, 2001. "NAFTA intra-industry trade in agricultural food products," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(2), pages 255-271.
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    Cited by:

    1. van Wijk, J.C.A.C. & Danse, M. & van Tulder, R.J.M., 2008. "Making Retail Supply Chains Sustainable: Upgrading Opportunities for Developing Country Suppliers under Voluntary Quality Standards," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2008-080-ORG, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.

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