ISLAMABAD    -    Pakistan’s oil imports have reduced by over 16 percent in first quarter (July to September) of the current fiscal year.

The country spent $3.16 billion on importing oil in July to September period of the year 2019-2020 as compared to $3.78 billion in the corresponding period of the previous year, according to the trade figures released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). The massive reduction in oil imports had helped in reducing overall imports of the country. Pakistan’s imports were recorded at $11.25 billion in first quarter of the current fiscal year as against $14.17 billion in the same period of previous year, showing reduction of 20.59 percent.

The PBS data showed that the import of petroleum products had shown decline of 17.25 percent to $1.32 billion. Similarly, import of petroleum crude had reduced by over 32.53 percent to $811 million. Meanwhile, imports of natural gas liquefied had cost $965 million and imports of petroleum gas liquefied recorded at $60.8 million.

All the groups including food group, petroleum good, consumer durables and raw materials have witnessed hefty decline in imports during the July-September period of 2019-20 over the same period last year. Food imports had contracted 24.78 percent to $1.096 billion during July-September period of 2019-20, from $1.458 billion in corresponding months last year. This decline was largely due to a 41.88 percent fall in the value of milk, cream and milk food for infants. Similarly, imports of transport group had posted a 32.02 percent decline, with decrease in imported value of almost all subcategories. On the other hand, agriculture imports inched down by 21.85 percent to $1.816 billion in July-September period of the current fiscal year from $2.324 billion in the same period of last year.

According to PBS figures, the country’s exports have recorded minor growth of 2.75 percent in the period under review. Pakistan has exported goods worth of $5.52 billion in July-September period of the year 2019-2020. The country’s textile exports had recorded growth of 2.95 percent during first quarter of the current fiscal year. The incumbent government had provided several incentives to the five exports oriented sectors including textile to enhance the country’s exports. The government had depreciated the currency and reduced the prices of electricity and gas but it failed to achieve the desired results.

Textile exports were recorded at $3.371 billion during July to September of the ongoing fiscal year. In textile sector, according to PBS, exports of knitwear had enhanced by 11.14 percent. Similarly, exports of bedwear had also recorded an increase of 2.84 percent and exports of raw cotton had gone up by 53.65 percent. Meanwhile, exports of yarn had also surged by 21.95 percent. The PBS data showed that exports of cotton cloth had recorded a decline of 5.6 percent. Similarly, exports of cotton yarn had tumbled by 6.19 percent. Exports of tents, canvas and tarpaulin witnessed decrease of 4.23 percent. Meanwhile, exports of made-up articles (excluding towels and bedwear had declined by 5.76 percent.

Meanwhile, the exports of food commodities had recorded an increase of 13.98 percent during first three months of the current fiscal year. In food commodities, exports of rice recorded growth of 50.76 percent, fruits exports increased by 10.2 percent and oil seeds, nuts and kernels exports had gone down by 13.5 percent.