ISLAMABAD: Export of services grew 18.17 per cent in the first eight months of the current fiscal year from a year ago, according to the latest data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS).

In absolute terms, the value of export of services reached $4.49 billion between July-February from $3.80bn over the corresponding months of last year.

The exports also grew 13.73pc to $547.07m in February against $481.02m over the corresponding month of last year.

On a month-on-month basis, exports of services increased 4.98pc.

In FY21, the export of services increased 9.19pc year-on-year to $5.937bn in FY21 compared to $5.437bn during the same period last year.

The growth is mainly led by the highest-ever export of IT services which also include finance and insurance, transport and storage, wholesale and retail trade, public administration and defence sectors.

The commerce ministry has projected a $7.5bn target of services exports for 2021-22.

The services sector has emerged as the main driver of economic growth as its share in GDP increased from 56pc in 2005-06 to nearly 61pc in 2020-21.

On the other hand, services imports reached $7.08bn in July and February against $5.08bn over the corresponding months of last year, reflecting an increase of 39.20pc.

In February, the imports of services grew 25.34pc to $831.01m against $663.01m over the corresponding month of last year. On a month-on-month basis, the imports of services posted a negative growth of 17.40pc.

In the FY21, the imports of services reached $7.812bn in July-June FY21 falling by 10.75pc from $8.753bn over the corresponding months last year.

The trade deficit in services increased by 101.25pc to $2.59bn in July and February against $1.28bn over the corresponding months of last year. In February, the trade deficit in services widened by 56.02pc to $283.94m from $181.99m in the corresponding month of last year.

Published in Dawn, April 6th, 2022

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