Pakistan’s exports plunge over 15pc in January

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: The country’s exports contracted for the fifth consecutive month, dropping by 15.42 per cent year-on-year to $2.21 billion in January 2023, the data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) shows.

The decrease in exports on yearly and monthly basis is being attributed to the closure of industrial units especially textile and clothing throughout the country.

The PBS data further shows that on a month-on-month basis, export proceeds plunged by 4.41pc in January.

The exports began posting negative growth in the first month of the current fiscal year, July, barring August when a slight increase was recorded because of the backlog of the preceding month. Export contraction is a worrisome factor, which will create problems in balancing the country’s external account.

In the first seven months (July to January) of 2022-23, exports were down 7.16pc at $16.46bn compared to $17.74bn in the corresponding period last year.

The drop shows the government would find it difficult to achieve the export target this fiscal year.

The imports also decreased to $4.856 billion in January 2023 from $6.036 billion in January 2022, showing negative growth of 19.55per cent. The trade deficit narrowed by 22.71 per cent on a YoY basis to $2.645 billion in January 2023 compared to $3.422 billion in January 2022.

On a month-on-month basis, the exports during January 2023 declined by 4.41 per cent when compared to the exports of $2.313 billion in December 2022. The imports into the country decreased 5.78 per cent in January 2023 when compared to the imports of $5.154 billion in December 2022, according to the data.

The trade deficit narrowed by 6.90per cent on a month-on-month basis and stood at $2.645 billion in January 2023 compared to $2.841 billion in December 2022.

The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) has said the country’s textile group exports declined to $1.36 billion in January 2023 as compared to $1.55 billion during the same period last year registering 12 per cent decline.

The data on textile exports released by the Association (APTMA) revealed that on MoM basis, the textile group exports were$1.36 billion in December 2022.