ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s trade imbalance reached a stunning $20.59 billion in the first five months of the current fiscal year, according to figures released on Friday by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS).

According to preliminary figures, the merchandise trade deficit increased for the sixth straight month in November, reaching $4.96 billion. In terms of value, this is the largest trade imbalance ever recorded in a single month.

During the period July-November, exports increased by 26.68 percent to $12.34 billion. In the month of November, exports totaled $2.88 billion.

Imports increased by 69.17 percent to $32.93 billion in November, with a $7.84 billion import bill.

During the fiscal year 2021-22, the trade deficit increased to $15.61 billion.

Exports increased by 24.71 percent to $9.44 billion from $7.57 billion in the same time last year. Imports increased by 65.15 percent to $25.06 billion, up from $15.17 billion in the same time previous year.

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