Research Analyst
Aug 16 - 22, 2010

The exports of goods and services play an imperative role in the economic development of a country and signify one of the most important sources of foreign exchange income. Exports not only ease the pressure on the balance of payments but also create employment opportunities. They can increase intra-industry trade, help the country to integrate in the world economy and reduce the impact of external shocks on the domestic economy.

Pakistan exports rice, furniture, cotton fiber, cement, tiles, marble, textiles, clothing, leather goods, sports goods, surgical instruments, electrical appliances, software, carpets, and rugs, ice cream, livestock meat, chicken, powdered milk, wheat, seafood, vegetables, processed food items, locally assembled automobiles to Afghanistan and other countries, defense equipment, salt, marble, onyx, engineering goods, and many other items.




MAY, 2010 JUNE, 2009
Knitwear 9.61 5.34
Cotton cloth -5.55 26.23
Bedwear -4.43 4.83
Readymade garments 16.31 24.18
Jewellry 3.49 150.06
Rice others 15.68 85.10
Cotton yarn 70.88 15.62
Rice basmati 20.55 -1.38
Towels -18.22 0.02
Art, silk & syn. Textile 6.83 43.17

During June 2010, exports from Pakistan were amounted to Rs155,164 million (provisional) as against Rs147,882 million (provisional) in May, 2010 and Rs123,219 million during June, 2009 showing an increase of 4.92 per cent over May,2010 and of 25.93 per cent over June, 2009. In terms of US dollars, the exports increased 3.75 per cent in June 2010 $ 1,819,372 thousands (provisional) when compared with May 2010 $ 1,753,574 thousands (provisional) and by 19.54 per cent as compared to June 2009 $1,522,022 thousands. Exports during July-June, 2009-10 totalled Rs1,625,282 million (provisional) as against Rs1,383,718 million during the corresponding period of last year showing an increase of 17.46 per cent. In terms of US dollars the exports during July-June 2010 totalled $19,382,552 thousands (provisional) as against $17,688,007 thousands during the corresponding period of last year showing an increase of 9.58 per cent. Main commodities of exports during June 2010 were knitwear (Rs14,354 million), cotton cloth (Rs13,467 million), bedwear (Rs12,870 million), readymade garments (Rs11,344 million), jewellry (Rs10,765 million), rice others (Rs10,260 million), cotton yarn (Rs9,976 million), rice basmati (Rs6,569 million), towels (Rs4,673 million), and art, silk & synthetic textile (Rs4,583 million).


COUNTRIES JUL-2009 TO FEB-2010 JUL-2008 TO FEB-2009
USA 179,220.55 17.45 174,126.22 18.70
Afghanistan 82,513.12 8.03 76,027.07 8.16
UAE 82,262.90 8.01 79,396.69 8.53
China 66,712.41 6.49 32,882.37 3.53
UK 57,015.71 5.55 44,585.63 4.79
Germany 42,895.11 4.18 39,642.47 4.26
Italy 32,413.33 3.16 30,005.07 3.22
Turkey 26,258.95 2.56 21,486.44 2.31
Spain 23,817.76 2.32 21,759.51 2.34
Bangladesh 22,834.40 2.22 20,939.03 2.25

Currently, Pakistan's export growth is hampered due to lack of diversification in export products as well as export markets. In terms of markets, traditionally 50 per cent of the country's exports are to only seven countries namely USA, Germany, China, UK, Germany, UAE, Italy, and Turkey. Thus past trade policies have consistently tried to promote diversification on both counts through a variety of measures and we are now beginning to see significant progress in this regard. In terms of products too, the exports are concentrated in a few categories such as cotton manufactures and synthetic textiles, leather, rice and sports goods as they collectively accounted for around 72 per cent of total exports. Pakistan now is being very well recognised for producing and exporting cements in Asia and Mid-East.

In Pakistan, exports have been confronted with problems like high cost of production and energy shortage. Other players in the South Asia region have succeeded in creating a niche in the international markets by exporting quality products, augmenting textile exports and earning rich dividends due to surge in the export of their cotton products. During the last few years, the exporters have faced serious power crisis in the industrial areas, which caused million of rupees losses to every year especially from Dec to July 2010. The country's energy demand has grown at an annual consumption growth rate of 4.8 per cent. Therefore, there is a dire need to have a sustained growth in energy supply and infrastructure capacity of seven to eight per cent per annum to support the steady growth in the country's exports. Recently, the worst floods in Pakistan for eighty years will also affect the country's exports and its targets in future.


Pakistan enjoys competitive advantage in several products demands of which are fast growing in the global markets and have high demand potential. The main plank of the strategy should be to concentrate on production and exports of dynamic products with respect to their global demand potential and productivity potential. Pakistan will and should remain engaged in the low-skill, labor intensive dynamic products such as textiles, leather products etc. In order to increase the global market share, the government and business community should participate in trade fairs organised in foreign countries. Similarly booklets, brochures, pamphlets about Pakistani products and economy of Pakistan should also be distributed to foreign business community.