Exports fall by 4.5pc in February

Published March 2, 2021
Pakistan’s exports fell by over four per cent in February from a year ago after recording growth in the past four months. — File photo
Pakistan’s exports fell by over four per cent in February from a year ago after recording growth in the past four months. — File photo

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s exports fell by over four per cent in February from a year ago after recording growth in the past four months, showed data released by the Ministry of Commerce on Monday.

The export proceeds fell to $2.044 billion in February, down by 4.5pc from $2.14bn in the corresponding month last year.

The drop in exports amid steady increase in imports will create a problem for the government on the external side.

Commerce Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood took to Twitter to say that Pakistan’s exports remained above the $2bn-mark for the past five consecutive months. How­ever, he did not give any reasons for the month-on-month decline in the exports.

Razak says proceeds remain above $2bn for fifth month in row

The adviser also did not share import figures and only release figures on export proceeds, which has steadily been on the rise for the past few months leading to a higher trade deficit.

Between July and February of the current fiscal year, Pakistan’s exports increased by 4.2pc to $16.30bn as compared to $15.643bn over the corresponding months of last year.

“We wish to congratulate our exporters for their hard work in earning the foreign exchange for the country and urge them to market their exports even more aggressively,” the adviser remarked.

Exports in the new fiscal year started on a positive note but witnessed a steep decline of 19pc in August 2020 before rebounding in September, October, and November. It further posted growth in December and January.

To boost exports of textile and non-textile products, the government has been providing cash subsidies besides slashing duty and taxes on import of raw materials.

In FY20, exports fell by 6.83pc or $1.57bn to $21.4bn, compared to $22.97bn the previous year. Data showed visible improvements in export orders from international buyers, mainly in the textile and clothing sectors since May 2020.

Published in Dawn, March 2nd, 2021

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