KARACHI - Total oil imports in the county, both in value and quantity, fell by 12.82 per cent during the first seven months (July-January) of current financial year 2009-10 amid slowdown in international energy prices and decline in domestic demand during the period under review. Overall oil imports, including crude and petroleum products stood at $5.634 billion during Jul-Jan FY10 as against $6.463 billion in the same period of last year. The imports of petroleum products, however, amounted to $3.620 billion during Jul-Jan FY10 from $3.619 billion in the corresponding period of previous year, depicting a slight increase of 0.03 per cent in Y-o-Y growth. According to FBS provisional figures on imports released Monday, the import of petroleum crude declined to $2.014 billion in the course of July-January FY10, compared with $2.884 billion in the equivalent months of previous year. The low import of crude oil is attributed to the ongoing circular debt issue, which resulted in the fall in quantity of crude oil imports. In the single month of January 2010, petroleum group imports rose by 70.37 per cent on month-on-month basis. Similarly, the entire imports in this broad category i.e., simple petroleum and crude, soared by 30.28 per cent, and 15.14 per cent, respectively over the month of January 2009. Pakistan spent $994.2 billion on the import of energy products in January this year as against $583.6 billion in the corresponding month of FY09. The analysis of imported petroleum products in Jul-Jan FY10 revealed that importation of furnace oil, high speed diesel oil, motor spirit and kerosene type jet fuel reached to $696.1 billion from $324.7 billion and $298 billion from $258.8 billion in the same month last year. Energy experts warn that the countrys oil imports bill may see an upward trend in the days to come on account of witnessing a fresh spell of upsurge in the prices of oil and other related commodities in international market, which would not be a positive sign for the current account position. It is important to note that oil prices Wednesday hit record high and reached 80 dollars a barrel, which is the highest point since October 14, 2008 due to a rising concerns by the western powers over Irans nuclear Programme.