Pakistan's July-February exports up 19 percent to $6.916 billion

ISLAMABAD (March 06 2003) : Pakistan's exports have increased by 19 percent to $ 6.916 billion during the first eight months (July-February) of the current fiscal year as compared to $ 5.812 billion of the last year, official sources told Business Recorder here on Wednesday.

They said the country earned $1.104 billion more in exports during July-February this year in comparison to the same period previous year.

Imports, they said, have increased by 19.94 percent to $7.757 billion against $6.468 billion, which showed that the country spent $1.289 billion more of which main share goes to the import of oil products and machinery.

However, according to the provisional foreign trade figures, the countries trade deficit widened by 28.2 percent during this period to $841 million as compared to $655.9 million last year.

In February, exports stood at $772.5 million as compared to the same period last year, showing 18 percent growth while imports showed 24.2 percent increase to $917 million against $738 million, indicating 73.7 percent trade deficit.

It is, however, interesting to note that exports in February declined by 18.4 percent to $772.5 million as compared to $946.5 million in January last whereas imports showed a negative growth of 13 percent to $917 million against $1.053 billion.

Commerce Minister Humayun Akhtar Khan, who was unaware of trade trends in February against January, was hopeful that Pakistan would achieve the target of exports if the current trend continued in the remaining months of the current financial year.

But the comparison of Feb-Jan showed that the current trend was not suitable for the county's exports and imports.

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