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Friday June 21, 2024

Textile exports dip slightly to $13.68bn in July/April as key segments contract

By Israr Khan
May 17, 2024
In this image, a man can be seen working in a textile factory in Pakistan. — AFP/File
In this image, a man can be seen working in a textile factory in Pakistan. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The textile exports declined 0.2 percent to $13.68 billion in the first 10 months of the current fiscal year, as key segments such as knitwear, cotton cloth, and readymade garments contracted.

However, bedwear and towel exports showed moderate increases over the same period last year.Monthly, the textile group's exports increased for the fourth consecutive month by a marginal 0.37 percent in April 2024 compared to April 2023. Official data released on Thursday that revealed textile exports reached $1.237 billion in April 2024, up from $1.232 billion in the same month the previous year.

In December 2023, textile exports saw a year-on-year increase of 3.3 percent, followed by a 10.1 percent rise in January 2024, a substantial 20.2 percent increase in February, and a 3.3 percent uptick in March 2024. Despite this monthly improvement, cumulative textile exports for July-April 2023/24 experienced a slight contraction of 0.19 percent, decreasing by $26 million to $13.68 billion, compared to $13.71 billion in the same period last year.

The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) reported that compared to March 2024's exports of $2.3 billion, April sales declined by 4.84 percent.In April 2024, bedwear exports declined by 7.1 percent to $202.5 million, cotton cloth by 7.97 percent to $135 million, and cotton yarn by 15.1 percent to $54.1 million. However, knitwear exports increased by 1.44 percent to $326.3 million, towels by 1.45 percent to $80.75 million, and readymade garments by 17.7 percent to $135 million.

Rice exports, including Basmati, increased by 57 percent to $352 million. Basmati rice exports rose by 17.5 percent to $77.9 million, while other varieties surged by 73.4 percent to $275 million. From July 2023 to April 2024, total rice exports jumped by 80 percent to $3.28 billion from $1.82 billion the previous year, with Basmati exports up 34 percent to $699 million and other rice varieties up 98.6 percent to $2.58 billion

Vegetable exports in April 2024 increased by 23.5 percent to $32.7 million and fruits also up by 29.3 percent to $8.16 million. However, exports of meat and meat preparations were down by 2.57 percent to $43.5 million, and fish and fish preparation by 14.6 percent to $43.6 million over the same month of last year.Additionally, football exports in April increased by 423 percent to $26.3 million, plastic materials by 21.1 percent to $30.3 million, and engineering goods by 20 percent to $30.9 million, while footwear exports increased by 0.25 percent to

$9.9 million.Pharmaceutical products’ exports were up by 20.8 percent to $29.5 million, Cement by 66.6 percent to $25 million, and leather manufacturing exports up by 0.78 percent to $42 million. However, surgical goods exports were down by 12.7 percent to $35.6 million over exports in April 2023.

IMPORTS

The PBS reported that total imports in the petroleum group surged by 88 percent to $1.676 billion in April 2024 compared to April 2023. Petroleum product imports increased by 115 percent to $673 million, crude oil by 110 percent to $581.5 million, LNG by 33 percent to $344 million, and LPG imports rose by 80.7 percent to $78 million.

During July-April of FY24, total imports in the petroleum group decreased by 1.5 percent to $13.76 billion compared to $13.97 billion in the same period of FY23. Notably, imports of petroleum products were reduced by 14.1 percent to $5.28 billion, while crude oil imports increased by 10.4 percent to $4.57 billion, LNG by 4.56 percent to $3.25 billion, and LPG imports also saw a rise of 14 percent to $657 million.

During the month under review, machinery imports surged by 151 percent to $906 million. Within this category, imports of telecom machinery and other apparatus witnessed a substantial increase of 515.5 percent to $211.7 million, largely due to a surge in mobile set imports. Pakistanis imported mobile sets of $161.4 million in one month which was over 14 times more than what was imported in the same month of the previous year.

In July-April of FY24, the import of mobile sets accounted for $1.46 billion, reflecting a significant increase of 209 percent compared to the previous year's imports of $473 million.

Moreover, in the machinery group, agriculture machinery imports increased by 84 percent to $8.18 million, and electrical machinery and apparatus by 290 percent to $486 million, construction and mining machinery imports up by 38 percent to $9.28 million.

However, power generation machinery imports dipped by 16.9 percent to $25.4 million and textile machinery imports were down by 10.4 percent to $14.2 million.

In the transport sector, total imports in April 2024 also increased by 154 percent to $159 million compared to $93 million in April 2023. Imports of completely built units (CBU) of buses, trucks, and other heavy vehicles saw an increase of 65.3 percent to $22.5 million. Imports of motor car units increased significantly by 148 percent to $21 million compared to the same month last year.

Imports of completely knocked down (CKD)/semi-knocked down (SKD) models of cars, motorcycles, buses, trucks, and other heavy vehicles increased by 140 percent to $90 million in April 2024. Within this category, motorcar imports increased by 215 percent to $72.2 million, and motorcycle imports increased by 41.4 percent to $3.19 million. Parts and accessories imports were also increased by 76 percent to $18.1 million.