ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s exports of services grew by about 54 per cent in the first two months of the current fiscal from what it was a year ago, according to the latest data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics.
In absolute terms, the value of exports reached $1.008 billion in July-August 2021 from $799.94m over the corresponding months of last financial year.
Services exports posted a growth of 53.64pc in August to $531.29m against $345.81m over the corresponding month of last year. On a month-on-month basis, exports increased by 11.38pc.
The export of services went up by 9.19pc year-on-year to $5.937bn in FY21 compared to $5.437bn during the same period last year.
The growth in the export of services are mainly led by the highest-ever export of IT services. Services exports also include finance and insurance, transport and storage, wholesale and retail trade, public administration and defence sectors.
Imports increased by 31.42pc to $1.627bn
The commerce ministry has fixed a target of $7.5bn for services exports for 2021-22.
The services sector has emerged as the main driver of economic growth as its share in the GDP increased from 56pc in 2005-06 to nearly 61pc in 2020-21.
On the other hand, services imports increased by 31.42pc to $1.627bn in July and August against $1.238bn over the corresponding months of last year.
In August, the imports of services went up by 88.89pc to $885.98m against $469.05m over the corresponding month of last year. On a monthly basis, the imports of services grew by 19.55pc.
The imports of services fell by 10.75pc to $7.812bn in July-June FY21 from $8.753bn over the corresponding months last year.
The trade deficit has increased by 41.24pc to $618.76m in July and August against $438.10m over the corresponding months of last year.
In August, the trade deficit in services went up by 187.8pc to $354.69m from $123.24m over the corresponding month of last year. The trade deficit declined by 43.45pc to $1.875bn in July-June FY21 against $3.315bn over the corresponding months last year.
In the budget 2021-22, the government has announced several measures to promote export of services, especially information technology. The incentives offered to exporters are related to tariff and non-tariff services.
Published in Dawn, October 9th, 2021