Pakistan CA deficit surges in September

Islamabad: Pakistan’s Current Account (CA) deficit was recorded at $956 million in September this year when compared with $550 million reported in August.

The surge in the CA deficit is mainly attributed to the reduced size of the remittances sent home from overseas Pakistanis.

As per the latest data by the State Bank of Pakistan, the country’s current account deficit stood at $3.6 billion, 4.2 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), during first two months of the Financial Year 2017-18.

Trade deficit during September remained flat at $2.2 billion. Both exports and imports declined by 17 per cent and 8 per cent to $1.7 billion and $3.9 billion, respectively.

Decline was largely due to the lower number of working days in September as both Eid-ul-Adha and Ashura holidays fell during the month.

Moreover, remittances saw a steep monthly decline of 34 percent to 1.3 billion dollars due to high-base effect (higher remittances in August owing to Eid and lower number of working days in September).

The country’s overall balance of payment, which includes financial account and capital account, remained in the red standing at $761 million in September.

Resultantly, foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank in September stood at $13.9 billion as against $14.7 billion posted in August.