Trade Deficit Rises at $43.3b in Jul-May Fiscal Year 2021-2022

In the first 11 months of the outgoing Fiscal year (July-May), Pakistan’s deficit crossed $43 billion as the pace of increase in imports was more than the surge in exports due to sky-rocketing oil import bill, quoting data from Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). Analysts fear that a record high trade deficit may further weaken the rupee and worsen the country’s current account balance.

Growth in exports was good during the year but still cannot meet the demands for trade balance. Imports surged to $72.18 billion while exports were at $28.848 billion in the July-May period. The imports were 60% more than exports. There deficit increased to 11.5% to $4.04 billion from $3.63 billion I the same month a year ago. If we compare trade performance with the previous month, the exports in May 2022 went down by 10.2% from $2.896 billion in April 2022 while imports also went down by half a percent from $6.679 billion in comparison to last month.

It is worth noticing that the trade deficit during the last year (2020-2021) which was $31-1 billion was 34.3% higher than recorded in the fiscal year (2019-2021) which stood $23.159 billion. During FY2020, the exports reached $21.39 billion while imports came in at $44.55 billion, which makes a deficit of $23.159 billion.

The PBS also reported the services trade statistics for the first ten month period of July2021-April2022. The services trade rose to 71% $3.58 billion from $2.1 billion in the same month last year as the local companies hired more services from other countries. Comparing April 2022 services trade performance with the same month last year exports surged to 58.17% while exports jumped 27.16%

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