ISLAMABAD - Pakistan’ trade deficit has increased by 6.07 per cent in the first month of ongoing financial year 2013-2014, as it was recorded at $1.719 billion in July 2013 as compared to $1.621 billion of the corresponding period of previous year (July 2012).

According to the figures of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), which were released on Friday, the country’s trade deficit was recorded at $1.719 billon in July 2013 against $1.621 billion of July 2012, showing an increase of over six per cent in one year. Exports rose 2.65 per cent to $2.095 billion during the July 2013 compared to $2.041 of the same period of last year. Imports soared by 4.16 per cent to $3.814 billion in July 2013 from $3.662 billion a year ago.

Meanwhile, according to the PBS figures, the overall exports growth went down by 4.64 per cent in July 2013 if compared with exports of June 2013. The country exported goods worth of $2.095 billion in July 2013 against $2.197 billion of June 2013. Similarly, the imports also reduced by 3.19 per cent in July 2013 against June 2013, as the country imported goods worth of $3.814 billion during the last month as compared to $3.940 billion of June 2013. Therefore, the country’s trade imbalance decreased by 1.35 per cent in July 2013 against that of June 2013. The country’s trade deficit was recoded at $1.719 billion in July 2013 against $1.743 billion of the June 2012.

According to the Annual Plan 2013-14, trade balance is encouraging due to the optimism prevailing on account of better availability of energy supply, coupled with high targets set in Strategic Trade Policy Framework 2012-15. Hence, a sustainable and growth supportive balance of payments is envisaged.

Exports for the ongoing financial year 2013-14 are projected to grow by 5.1% to $ 26.6 billion from $ 25.3 billion estimated of the previous fiscal year 2012-13. Imports for the ongoing financial year 2013-14 are projected to increase by 7.1% to $ 43.3 billion from $ 40.4 billion estimated for 2012-13. Hence, the trade balance is projected to be in deficit by $ 16.7 billion in 2013-14. The current account is projected to be in deficit by $ 2.9billion in 2013-14 (1.1% of GDP) as against a deficit of $ 2.1 billion (0.9% of GDP) estimated for 2012-13.