Despite simmering tensions India-Pakistan border trade continues

KARACHI: Despite tensions following the Pulwama incident and downing of an Indian Air Force jet, the border trade between the two arch-rivals did not see much change and witnessed a six percent decline during the first 10 months of this fiscal year.

According to the latest report of State Bank, the trade volume of the two countries (Pakistan and India) was $1,699 million during July-April FY19 compared to $1,820m in the same period in last fiscal year, showing a decline of 6.6pc.

However, trade remained in favour of India as its exports to Pakistan were much bigger than imports. Pakistan’s exports to India declined by $39m to $298m and imports by $82m to $1,401m during the 10 months period.

Meanwhile, China has emerged as Pakistan’s biggest trading partner in the last five years. During the 10 months, exports to China slightly increased but imports were drastically reduced by $989m or 10.6pc to $8.301 billion. Exports increased by $23m to $1.476bn in 10 months of this fiscal. China has increased market access for Pakistani products but the country lacks exportable products. Only agriculture products like rice saw an increase in exports.

The biggest loss was noted in trade with Afghanistan as Pakistan’s export to the country fell by 25pc in the first 10 months of this fiscal year.

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