In the last five months of fiscal 2022, Pakistan’s trade deficit increased to Rs 255 crore. Total imports rose to $40.52 billion, twice as much as exports, according to figures released by Pakistan’s Bureau of Statistics.
A trade deficit means we pay more for the goods and services we buy from the world than we earn from selling them our goods and services.
The bulk of the bill was blamed on imports of more than $10 billion in petroleum products, followed by $5.91 billion in machinery and $4.79 billion in food.
During this period, Pakistan’s imports of petroleum products increased by 10%, while food imports increased by 23%. These include tea paw, spices, palm oil, sugar and beans.
Imports of agricultural supplements, pesticides and fertilizers jumped 96 percent, PBS data showed, adding that $5.91 billion was spent on machinery.
Pakistan also imported a large number of mobile phones during this period. From July 2021 to December 2021, smartphones worth Rs 100 crore were imported – a 39% increase from the previous year.
In addition, $2.32 billion worth of vehicles entered Pakistan. This includes nearly 43 percent of cars.
Other imports included textiles worth $2.39 million, and iron, gold and steel worth $3.4 billion.