ISLAMABAD-Pakistan’s exports have declined by over eight percent in March 2020 mainly due to the outbreak of coronoavirus throughout the world.

According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), the country’s exports have reduced to $1.81 billion in March 2020 from $1.97 billion in the same month of the previous year showing decline of 8.46 percent. Exporters have been facing after the outbreak of coronavirus and the evolving position of the global economies and its impact on the export sector of Pakistan.

Pakistan’s exports might tumble by up to $2.67 billion in next few months. According to the estimates, exports could either tumble by 25 percent ($1.336 billion) at the minimum and by 50 percent (2.672 billion) at the maximum during the period of March-June 2019-20.

Keeping in view the problems of business community, the government had announced to provide maximum relief by disbursing of Rs100 billion refunds immediately. The ministry of finance on Friday announced that the government has released Rs100 billion to industry under tax refunds. Advisor to PM on Finance & Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh noted that these are unprecedented steps taken by the government to support business and employment in difficult times.

The tax refunds released to the industry are the highest in Pakistan’s history. Dr Shaikh stated that the government stimulus package aims to address the liquidity challenges faced by the industry. Improved cash flow position of the companies will ensure that workers get their salaries on time.

The PBS data showed that Pakistan’s exports have shown growth of 2.23 percent in nine months of current fiscal year. The country’s exports registered at $17.45 billion in July-March period of the current financial year as compared to the $17.07 billion in the corresponding period of previous year.

On the other hand, the government has successfully controlled the soaring imports of the country. Imports have declined by 14.42 percent in the period under review. Pakistan has imported goods worth of $34.81 billion in July-March of 2019-20 as compared to $40.68 billion in the same period of last year.

The country’s trade deficit was recorded at $17.36 billion in July to March period of the year 2019-20 as compared to $23.61 billion in the same period of the previous year, showing decline of 26.45 percent. Trade imbalance has shrunk by $6.25 billion in one year.

According to the data, the country’s exports have registered decline of 8.46 percent in the month of March 2020. The country has exported goods worth of $1.81 billion in March 2020 as compared to $1.97 billion in the same period of the previous year.

However, the imports have tumbled by around 19.85 percent. Imports were recorded at $3.299 billion in March 2020, which was around $4.116 billion in the same month of the previous year.

The reduction in imports and exports has resulted in reduction in trade deficit by 30.35 percent during the month of March this year. Pakistan’s trade deficit was recorded at $1.49 billion in the month of March 2019 as compared to $2.14 billion in the same month of previous year.