Petroleum one-fourth of total imports

ISLAMABAD (APP): The imports of petroleum group constituted around 23.7 percent of the total import bill during the fiscal year 2017-18, official data revealed. The import bill of petroleum group was recorded at $14.430 billion compared to the total merchandise imports of $60.867 billion during July-June (2017-18), according to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS).  The imports of petroleum group during the year under review increased by 32.10 percent when compared to the imports of $10.923 billion during the corresponding period of last fiscal year (2016-17). Among the petroleum products, the highest increase of 86.94 percent was registered in the imports of liquefied natural gas, which grew from $1.312 billion during 2016-17 to $2.453 billion in 2017-18. The imports of crude petroleum surged by 66.05 percent by going up from $2.547 billion to $4.229 billion while the imports of liquefied petroleum gas increased by 20.08 percent, from $0.225 billion to $0.270 billion. The imports of petroleum products increased from $6.837 billion to $7.476 billion, showing growth of 9.33 percent.

However, the imports of all other petroleum group decreased by 42.25 percent.

Meanwhile, on year-on-year basis, the petroleum group imports into the country increased by 48.51 percent during June 2018 against the imports of same month of last year.

The imports during June 2018 were recorded at $1.502 billion against the imports of $1.011 billion in June 2017, the PBS data revealed.

On month-on-month basis, the imports of petroleum group into the country witnessed around one percent increase in June 2018 when compared to the imports of $1.487 billion in May 2017.

It is pertinent to mention here that the overall merchandise imports into the country during the fiscal year 2017-18 increased by 15.10 percent by going up from $52.910 billion in FY 2016-17 to $60.898 billion.

On the other hand, the exports from the country surged by 13.74 percent from $20.422 billion to $23.228 billion.

Based on the figures, the external trade deficit during the outgoing fiscal year 2017-18 increased by 15.95 compared to last year.

The trade deficit during FY 2017-18 was recorded at $ 37.670 billion against the deficit of $32.488 billion in FY 2016-17.

LCVs output goes up by 19pc

ISLAMABAD (APP): The production of light commercial vehicles (LCVs) witnessed an increase of 18.54 percent during first eleven months of the fiscal year 2017-18 against the same period of last year, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) reported. As many as 27,178 LCVs were manufactured during July-May (2017-18) against the output of 22,927 in July-May (2016-17), showing growth of 18.54 percent, the PBS data revealed.  Meanwhile, on year-on-year basis, the production of LCVs witnessed decrease of 12.96 percent by going down from the output of 2,368 units in May 2017 to 2,061 units in May 2018. It is pertinent to mention here that the overall Large Scale Manufacturing Industries (LSMI) of the country witnessed growth of 6 percent during the first eleven months of the current fiscal year compared to the corresponding period of last year. The country's LSMI Quantum Index Numbers (QIM) was recorded at 149.19 points during July-May (2017-18) against 140.75 points during July-May (2016-17), showing growth of 6 per cent.

The highest growth of 3.62 percent was witnessed in the indices monitored by Ministry of Industries, followed by 1.58 percent growth in the products monitored by Provincial Bureaus of Statistics (PBOS) and 0.80 growth in the indices of Oil Companies Advisory Committee (OCAC).

On year-to-year basis, the industrial growth increased by 2.76 percent during May 2018 as compared to same month of last year, however, on month-to-month basis, the industrial growth decreased by 11.63 percent in May 2018 when compared to growth of April 2018, the PBS data revealed.

Urea sales to surge by 45pc in July

Lahore  (staff Reporter): Pakistan urea sales during Jul 2018 is likely to increase by 45% YoY due to low base effect last year. To recall, industry witnessed higher offtakes in Jun 2017 (nearly 1mn tons) in anticipation of reduction in cash subsidy. Sales were normalized in subsequent month Jul 2017. Other than this sales were higher in the outgoing month due to inventory buildup by dealers/farmers in anticipation of rise in urea prices amid its prevailing shortage. Urea inventory in July end is estimated to touch nearly 5-year low at 120-130k tons, where last low was seen in Aug-2013 at around 105k tons. Sharp decline in inventory is due to closure of few fertilizer plants amid unavailability of natural gas and their unviability at current LNG prices.  Among companies, Engro Fertilizer (EFERT) is expected to post sales growth of 131% YoY to 171k tons. While, Fauji Fertilizer (FFC) and Fauji Fertilizer Bin Qasim (FFBL) sales are likely to grow by 49% YoY and 36% YoY respectively. During Jul 2018, DAP sales were likely to close flat at 285k tons, taking 7M2018 offtake to 967k tons, up by 14% YoY.

On the other hand, urea sales during 7M2018 is expected to reach 3.2mn tons, up by 6% YoY.

At present dealer transfer price of urea is around Rs1570-1590 per bag, while recent data released by Pakistan Bureau Of Statistics (PBS) indicates that dealers are selling at average of Rs1660/bag.

Export to Afghanistan rises 31pc

ISLAMABAD (APP): The country's export of goods to Afghanistan increased by 31.02 percent during July-May (2017-18) to US $1.402 billion against the export of goods worth $1.07 billion in same period of the preceding year. The import of goods from Afghanistan also witnessed an increase of 117.9 percent as it rose to $118.48 million in 11 months of previous fiscal year from $54.355 million in July-May (2016-17), according to latest data released by SBP. On yearly basis, the export of goods to Afghanistan increased to $119.571 million in May 2018, against the exports worth of $115.649 million in same month of previous year, showing an increase of 3.43 percent. The imports also witnessed an increase of 169 percent which rose to $10.683 million in May 2018 against the imports worth of $3.97 million in same month of last year. The export of services to Afghanistan during the period under review, also increased by 76 percent to $17.87 million during July-May (2017-18) against export of services worth $10.15 million during same period of last year.

Total import of services from Afghanistan during the corresponding year increased to $13.58 million from $9.9 million during same period of the preceding year.

On yearly basis, the export of services declined from $727,000 in May 2017 to $502,000 in 2018, showing a decline of 30.9 percent.

Similarly the import of services from Afghanistan witnessed an increase of 44.26 percent to $1.15 million in May 2018 from $0.641 million in same month of previous year.