ISLAMABAD - Pakistan’s trade deficit has surged by 40 per cent during the first seven months (July-January) of ongoing fiscal year 2011-12 as it has recorded at $13.172 billion in the period under review against $9.424 billion of the same period last financial year.

According to figures of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics released on Tuesday, the country’s trade imbalance has been recorded at $13.172 billion in July-January of 2011-12 against $9.424 billion of July-January 2010-11 thus showing an increase of 40 per cent in one year. The official figures depicts that trade deficit has increased due to the sharp increase in country’s imports in the period under review, as Pakistan imported commodities worth of $26.327 billion in July-January 2011-12 against $22.546 billion of July-January 2010-11 that showed an increase of 17 per cent. On the other hand, exports has been enhanced by only 0.25 per cent as it has recorded at $13.155 billion in the first seven months of the current fiscal year against the $13.122 billion of same period last year.

The country’s exports might not reach the previous year level of $24 billion owing to the international market situation and ongoing prevailing energy crisis in the country. The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has also projected in its recent monetary policy that export receipts are projected to show a decline of 3 to 5 per cent in the current fiscal year as the falling cotton prices are playing their part in sharper than expected slowdown in export receipts.

Meanwhile, according to the PBS figures, the overall exports showed growth of 5.34 per cent in January 2012 if compare with the exports of December 2011. The country exported good worth of $1.953 billion in January 2012 against the $ 1.854 billion of December 2011. However, the imports have went down by 14.36 per cent in January 2012 against the December 2011, as the country imported good worth of $3.649 billion during the last month as compare to $4.261 billion of December 2011.

Therefore, the country’s trade imbalance went down by 29.54 per cent in January 2012 against the December 2011. The country’s trade deficit has recoded at $1.696 billion in January 2011 against the $2.407 billion of the December 2011.

According to the PBS figures, exports stood at $1.953 billion in January 2012, which were $2.307 billion in January 2011 and this showed 15.34 per cent decline in exports in one year. Imports increased by 5.95 per cent and totalled to $3.649 billion in January 2012 against $3.444 billion of January 2011.

The trade deficit for January 2012 against January 2011 increased by 49.16 per cent and recorded at$ 1.696 billion.