Pakistan Bureau of Statistics Reports a Mixed Bag of Import-Export Growth

Pakistan’s textile and clothing exports grew by 11.3 percent year-on-year (YoY) basis, reaching $1.189 billion in September 2020 as compared to $1.068 billion, as shown by the data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Saturday. Petroleum imports declined while the telecommunication sector posted higher imports, the data showed.

In August, the exports declined by more than 15 percent, after showing a growth of 14.4 percent in July. Exports had collapsed due to a drastic reduction in demand since March, due to the Covid-19. However, now a gradual improvement is being seen by international buyers. In July-September, textile exports showed modest upward movement by 2.92 percent to $3.46 billion, from $3.37 billion in the same period last year.


As per the documents, exports of ready-made garment showed upward movement by 12.62 percent in value, however, the reports showed that the number of exports went down by 41.19 percent during September. Knitwear exports increased by 24.08 percent in value and also increased in quantity by 9.56 percent.

The government lifted the ban on exports of seven products classified as personal protective equipment (PPE) in a bid to allow manufacturers to honor international orders.

On the import side, the import of textile machinery dropped by 25.09 percent during the first quarter of the current fiscal year, July to September 2020, which is indicative of no expansion or upgrade projects being done by the industry during the time period in concern.


Petroleum imports declined by 26.55 percent in the first quarter (July-September) to $2.32 billion, as compared to $3.16 billion over the same period last year. Of these, the petroleum product imports were down 14.68 percent in value in the first quarter despite having posted an increase in quantity, to the tune of 65.3 percent. Similarly, the import of crude oil went down by 15.86 percent in monetary terms even though the imported quantity went up by 30 percent during the period under review.

Imports of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) fell by 56.52 percent in value but the imports of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) went up by 46.43 percent in July-September. This hike is largely attributable to the shortage in local production.


In the telecommunication sector, imports surged by 57.54 percent, primarily through the imports of Mobile handsets which showed an upward movement of 83.17 percent. The crackdown on smuggling and doing away with free imports in baggage schemes led to this increase in registered imports of mobile phones.

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