ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s exports of value-added textile products grew three per cent to $1.14 billion in the first quarter (July to September) of this fiscal year from $1.11bn a year ago, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday.
In the subsectors, exports of readymade garments were almost steady at $630.16 million compared to $629.67m, while those of knitwear rose by 6.7pc to $510.02m from $478.17m.
The growth came mainly on the back of a Rs6bn subsidy the government extended to the sector last year.
This time around, however, the government has irked the sector by imposing a 10pc regulatory duty on import of yarn, mostly used by knitwear and woven apparel segments.
In 2014-15, value-added textile exports rose to $4.517bn from $4.202bn in 2013-14, an increase of 7.5pc.
The import of textile machinery fell by around 3pc in the July-September quarter over the last year, which points to little interest for investment in diversifying products or improving their quality.
During the quarter under review, cotton yarn exports fell 19pc to $379.124m from $467.767m, and those of cotton cloth dropped by 11pc to $561.06m from $631.068m.
Trade analysts believe that by encouraging and facilitating exports of raw materials or semi-finished products, Pakistan is exporting jobs to other countries.
Bedwear exports dipped by 7.68pc, but those of towels and made-ups rose by 8.92pc and 2.51pc during July-September, due mainly to better prices.
Exports of carded cotton fell by 42pc, yarn (other than cotton) by 15.3pc, tents and canvas by 54pc.
Overall textile and clothing products export dropped to $3.225bn in July-Sept as against $3.410bn, a decline of 5.4pc.
Oil and foodstuffs
Oil and eatables import bill plunged by 35.6pc year-on-year to $3.449bn during the three months to September from $5.359bn.
Pakistan’s total import bill, however, saw a lesser decline, going down by 14.6pc to $10.655bn during the quarter from $12.473bn a year ago.
Imports of food products fell 16pc to $1.198bn from $1.430bn, mainly driven by lower imports of palm oil and wheat.
Oil imports plummeted by 42.7pc to reach $2.251bn in July-September 2015 from $3.927bn a year earlier. The decline was witnessed in imports of both crude oil and finished petroleum products.
Published in Dawn, October 23rd, 2015