China remains Pakistan’s largest trading partner during July-September
ISLAMABAD-Despite a 30.67% decline in bilateral trade, China remained Pakistan’s largest trading partner during the first quarter (July-September) of the current fiscal year (2022-23), the Ministry of Commerce reported.
The bilateral trade volume dropped to $3.952 billion during the first quarter (Q1) of the current fiscal year from $5.701 billion in the same period of last fiscal year, data shows. Pakistan recorded $3.121 billion trade deficit with China during Q1 of FY23 against the deficit of $4.393 billion during the same quarter of last fiscal year. Pakistan’s exports to China also fell by 36.45% during the period under review and were recorded at $415.57 million against $653.96 million during the same quarter of last year. Imports from China dropped to $3.536 billion during Q1 of FY23 from $5.047 billion in the corresponding period of FY22, registering a negative growth of 29.93%. Despite substantial decrease in imports, China remained Pakistan’s largest source of imports during the period under review. In a month-wise comparison, negative growth in the bilateral trade was observed during all three months of Q1. The bilateral trade volume declined by 45.70% during September to $1.112 billion from $2.048 during the corresponding month of last year.
Pakistan’s exports to China posted a negative growth of 33% during September this year and were recorded at $175.08 million against $261.86 million during the same month of last year. Imports from China also declined by 48% during September to $937.27 million from $1787.9 million during the same month of last year. A negative growth of 17.51% and 18.10% was also observed in July and August, respectively, in the bilateral trade. According to the Ministry of Commerce, with the bilateral trade volume of $19.457 billion, China remained Pakistan’s largest trading partner during the fiscal year 2021-22. Pakistan’s exports to China were recorded at $3.111 billion in 2021-22 while imports were $16.346 billion. Pakistan’s export items to China included cotton, copper, cereals, fish, crustaceans, molluscs, aquatics invertebrates, oil seed, oleagic fruits, grain, seed, fruits, beverages, spirits and vinegar, aluminium, apparel, salt, sulphur, leather and plastics.
Pakistan’s imports from China are electrical and electronic equipment, machinery, nuclear reactors, boilers, pharmaceutical products, mineral fuels, oils, distillation products, organic chemicals, iron and steel, vehicles other than railway, tramway, plastics, fertilizers, manmade filaments, and rubbers. The Government of Pakistan imposed a ban on imports of various luxury items in May this year. The ban was lifted in August. However, it caused substantial decline in the volume of imports during the first quarter. According to experts, China is the largest food market and Pakistan can enhance its exports to the neighbouring country by exporting food items, especially fruits, vegetables, rice and fish.