Trade deficit swells to $6.44bn in four months

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ISLAMABAD: From July to October 2012, the Pakistani economy racked up an international goods trade deficit (an excess of imports over exports) of $6.44 billion, as its total goods exports stood at $8.203 billion and imports were recorded at $14.64 billion, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) reported on Tuesday.

In the corresponding period last year, Pakistan’s exports stood at $7.814 billion and imports at $14.723 billion with a deficit of $6.909 billion. Compared to same period last year, Pakistan’s export-import gap fell by 6.8 percent. During October 2012, $2.016 billion worth of products were exported while in the same month last year $1.88 billion worth of products were sold abroad – registering an increase of 7.23 percent. Imports stood at $3.79 billion during October 2012 while in same month last year, they were at $3.607 billion – registering an increase of 5.07 percent. During the same month, the export-import gap widened by 2.72 percent to $1.774 billion as compared to last year. Exports declined by 9.15 percent while imports rose by 8.10 percent during October 2012, as compared to September 2012, when exports stood at $2.219 billion and imports at $3.506 billion.

PBS monthly trade data shows that for the last few months the pace of exports has been a little higher than that of imports. This is why the trade deficit has narrowed. Independent economists consider it a good cushion for the economy on the external front however they are not happy with the trend arguing that less imports indicate the closing down of businesses, domestic demand and slowing down of the economy.

 

The cumulative exports of the economy during this four-month period went up by 4.98 percent while imports dipped by 0.54 percent. During the last fiscal year, the economy racked up a huge trade deficit of $21.27 billion, which was 36.32 percent more than what was recorded in the previous fiscal. Exports during FY12 totalled $23.64 billion compared with $24.81billion for the same period last year, showing a 4.71 percent decline. Meanwhile, imports rose by 11.13 percent to $44.91 billion from $40.41 billion in the previous year.

 

Courtesy:  The News


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