Palm oil imports up by 7pc

ISLAMABAD(APP): The imports of palm oil into the country witnessed increase of 7.06 percent during the fiscal year 2017-18 as compared to the imports of the corresponding period of previous year. Pakistan imported palm oil worth $2039.718 million during July-June (2017-18) against the imports of $1905.136 million in July-June (2016-17), showing growth of 7.06 percent, according to the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). In terms of quantity, Pakistan imported 2,843,350 metric tons of palm oil during the period under review against the imports of 2,606,841 metric tons last year, showing growth of 9.07 percent. Meanwhile, the soyabean oil imports also increased from $122.785 million during FY2016-17 to $135.995 million in FY2017-18, showing growth of 10.76 percent. In terms of quantity, the soyabean imports increased from 117,393 metric tons to 156,718 metric tons, showing growth of 33.50 percent. Meanwhile on year-on-year basis, the palm oil imports into the country slipped down by 4.8 percent during June 2018 against the imports of June 2017.

The palm oil imports during June 2018 were recorded at $151.398 million against the imports of $159.032 million, the data revealed.

On month-on-month basis, the palm oil imports decreased by 4.85 percent during June 2018 when compared to the imports of $159.112 million in May 2018.

On the other hand, the soyabean imports into the country increased by 5.49 percent in June 2018 to $10.815 million compared to the imports of $10.252 million in June 2017.

On month-on-month basis, the soyabean imports into the country increased by 133.82 percent in June 2018 when compared to the imports of $4.764 million in May 2018, the data revealed.

It is pertinent to mention here that the overall food imports into the country increased by 0.68 percent during July-June (2017-18) compared to corresponding period of last year. The food imports during the period were recorded at $6185.369 million against the imports of $6143.435 million, the data revealed.

Food group exports record 29pc growth

ISLAMABAD (APP): About 1.189 million metric tons of wheat worth $236.339 million were exported during 12 months of fiscal year 2017-18 as compared the exports of 3,937 metric tons valuing $1.038 million of corresponding period of last year. During the period from July-June,2017-18, local export of wheat witnessed about 22,668.89 percent growth as compared the exports of the same period of last year, according the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. The boost in exports of the local wheat were attributed to bumper crop production during last season, besides, facilitation to its exports and purchase of the commodity by International Donner agencies for their contribution in different food assistance programs. Meanwhile, the exports of sugar also grew by 215.66 percent in terms of dollar as about 1,469,802 metric tons of the above mentioned commodity worth $508.333 million exported as compared the exports of 307,348 metric tons valuing $161.039 million, the data reveled.

During the period under review, about 20,694 metric tons of spices worth US$ 79.154 million exported during last year, which was stood at 22,831 metric tons valuing $84.572 million of same period of 2016-17.

However, in last fiscal year, the local exports of leguminous vegetables (pulses) registered negative growth in their exports and no quantity of the commodity was exported during the period under review.

In last fiscal year , about 520,759 metric tons of basmati rice worth $540.231 million were exported during the Period from July-June, 2017-18 as against the exports of 496,263 metric tons valuing $453.441 million of Corresponding period of last year.

During the period under review, the exports of basmati rice witnessed 19.14 percent growth when the quantity was compared with the same period of last year, according the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. .

Meanwhile about 4.106 million tons of rice worth $2.073 billion were exported during 12 months of last financial year as compared the exports of 3.523 million tons valuing $1.606 billion of the corresponding period of last years, registered 26.78 percent growth during the period under review.

During the period from July-June, the country earned $1.496 billion by exporting rice other then basmati as about 3.585 million tons of other rice exported as against the exports of 3.053 million tons worth $1.153 billion of same period last year.

It may be recalled that food group exports from the country recorded about 29.28 percent growth as country earned $4.797 billion exporting different food commodities, which were recorded at $3.711 billion in the same period of last year.

Service sector poises to grow at 6.5pc

ISLAMABAD (APP): Keeping in view the momentum gained during past three years, the growth prospects for services sector are bright and it has been targeted to grow by 6.5 percent during the current fiscal year (2018-19). Official data predicted that since retail and wholesale trade, and transport, storage, communication are closely associated with the commodity producing sectors of the economy, hence any uptick in the economic activity of agriculture and manufacturing would translate into increased growth in these sectors. In this backdrop, wholesale and retail trade is targeted to grow at 7.8 percent, the data revealed. Retail and wholesale trade, and transport, storage and communication have share of 18.3 percent and 13.4 percent in total GDP respectively.Meanwhile, Rapid pace of digitization of financial services is expected to substantially increase the number of people having bank accounts and help document the true potential of economy. Thus finance and insurance is expected to grow at 7.5 percent.

Tourism is another potential area for boosting growth in service sector and the

World Travel and Tourism council had forecast that Pakistan has the potential to earn 3 percent of GDP from tourism.

There had been potential for increasing the broadband penetration and cellular density as the government was keen in technology upgrade, setting up IT parks and enhancing the capacity of IT and software industry.

The transport, storage and communication sector was set to grow at 4.9 percent while general government services, other private services, and housing services are expected to grow at 7.2 percent, 6.8 percent and 4 percent respectively.

Meanwhile, the export of services has witnessed negative trends during the last fiscal year (2017-18) as it went down 7.91 percent during the first eleven months.

The exports of services from the country during July-May (2017-18) were recorded at $4.696 billion against the exports of $5.099 billion during July-May (2016-17), showing decline of 7.91 percent.

The imports of services into the country, however increased by 4.98 percent by going up from $8.980 billion during FY2016-17 to $9.428 billion in FY2017-18.

Based on the figures, the services trade deficit during the period under review increased by 21.93 percent as it went up from the deficit of $3.881 billion in FY2016-17 to $4.732 billion during FY2017-18, the PBS data revealed.

Steps in place to promote olive production

LAHORE (APP): The provision of 2 million good quality and high yielding olive plants is underway to make Potohar an olive valley. A spokesman of the Punjab Agriculture department said this here on Wednesday. Under a five years government project which is aimed at the promotion of olive growth, growers of Chakwal, Jhelum, Attock, Rawalpindi, Mianwali and Khushab were being given olive plants free of cost, he added. He said that under the project farmers were also being provided financial assistance upto 70 percent for tubewells while 60 percent financial support was being given to install drip irrigation system. Landlords were also being given free technical training and recommendations, he maintained. The spokesman said that interested farmers could submit their application till August 31 to get free of cost plants besides contacting on 0543-662001/662004 numbers to get information in this regard. Application forms could be downloaded from www.barichakwal.agripunjab.gov.pk and www.barichakwal.org, he added.