January 18, 2022 (MLN): The import of medicinal products went up by a whopping 9.7x YoY and 41.6% MoM to $975.7mn during the month of December 2021, mainly due to an increase in Covid-19 vaccine imports.
The PBS data showed that the medicinal import bill rose to a huge $3.1bn during the first half of FY22, up by 5.7x YoY from $538.9mn a year ago.
Meanwhile, it is important to note that this medicinal import bill may widen the difference between PBS and SBP datasets as the central bank has not paid the bill for medicinal items i.e., vaccines for Covid-19 during December.
During the last 12 months, the 9 listed selected pharmaceutical units registered a sales growth of 12% to Rs163bn whereas the profit of listed pharma sector companies rose by 28% to Rs 18.8 billion.
Going by the PBS data, a massive increase was witnessed in the import bill of petroleum products, as it jumped to $1.8bn in Dec’21, up by 2.18x YoY. On a monthly basis oil import bill dipped by 17.4%.
Cumulative, during 1HFY22, the oil import bill surged to $10.18bn, showing an increase of 2.13x YoY. As a consequence of this, prices of petroleum products also soared noticeably for domestic consumers during the same period.
The country’s food import bill widened by over 22% YoY to $4.8bn in the first six months of the current fiscal year from $3.9bn over the corresponding months of last year to bridge the gap in food production. During the month of December alone, the food import bill dipped by 11.6% YoY and 2.13% MoM to $783.4mn. It is worth mentioning that Pakistan paid over $1.8bn on import of Palm oil during 1HFY22, showing an increase of 66% YoY due to rise in palm oil prices in international market.
Moreover, Pakistan imported 1,361, 253 tonnes of wheat in the first six months of the current fiscal year against 24,487,706 tonnes imported last year, showing a decline of 45% YoY. In value terms, the government paid $470.4mn for wheat import as compared to $661mn in the same period last year.
The import bill of the machinery group increased by 39% YoY to $5.9bn in July-Dec FY22 against $4.2bn over the same period last year. Import of power generating machinery went up by 20.6% in the period under review due to CPEC related projects.
The mobile phone import jumped by 16% YoY to $1bn in July-Dec FY22 from the same period a year ago. During the month of December alone, machinery imports witnessed a growth of 30% YoY and 6% MoM to $1.13bn.
The import bill of the transport sector posted a growth of 105% YoY to $2.32bn in the first six months this year against $1.1bn over last year, mainly led by massive imports of road motor vehicles (build unit, CKD/SKD) worth $1.87bn. In the same period last year, the country imported $873.5mn worth of road motor vehicles.
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