KARACHI  - Pakistan’s current account deficit widened to a provisional $305 million in January 2012, compared with $118 million shortfall in January 2011, the State Bank said on Friday.

The current account recorded a provisional deficit of $2.633 billion in the first seven months of the 2011/12 fiscal year, compared with a deficit of $96 million in the same period last year, according to data from the State Bank of Pakistan.

The trade deficit widened to $9.057 billion in the first seven months of the 2011/12 fiscal year, compared with $6.531 billion in the same period last year. The trade deficit was $1.292 billion in January 2012.

Asif Qureshi, director at Optimus Capital Management Ltd, said, “The situation obviously is not looking up and Pakistan is certainly not headed in the right direction. At the same time, there doesn’t seem to be any urgency on part of the authorities to have a strategy on financing the external accounts.”