ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Minister for Commerce has said that the bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia decreased by 12.24% from January to October 2019 as opposed to the same period of the previous year (from US$ 660.2 million to US$ 579.4 million).
In a written reply to a question by Nafeesa Inayatullah Khan Khattak of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), the minister told the National Assembly on Thursday that Pakistan’s imports from the Russian Federation experienced a significant drop of 32.9% reaching US$ 257.5 million during the said period which consequently led to the decrease in Pakistan-Russia trade volume.
The minister told that the balance of trade in the period January-October 2019 equaled to US$ 64.4 million was in favor of Pakistan.
Top 10 Pakistan’s exports to Russia in September 2019 included:
- Articles of apparel and clothing accessories, not knitted or crocheted
- Articles of apparel and clothing, knitted or crocheted
- Articles of leather
- Man-made staple fibers
- Home textiles
- Toys, games and sports requisites (inflatable balls)
- Pharmaceutical products
- Soap, organic surface-active agents
Top 10 Pakistan’s imports from Russia in September 2019 included:
- Edible vegetables and certain roots and tubers (peas/chickpeas)
- Paper and paperboard; articles of paper pulp, of paper or of paperboard
- Coffee, tea, mate and spices
- Rubber and articles thereof
- Articles of iron or steel
- Organic chemicals
- Inorganic chemicals
- Electrical machinery and equipment and parts thereof
- Wood and articles of word; wood charcoal
- Salt; Sulphur; earths and stone; plastering materials, lime and cement.
The Minister for Commerce also apprised the House that no trade agreements between Pakistan and Russia have been signed during the last three years.
The minister further told that an agreement was signed between Pakistan and Russia on the settlement of mutual financial claims and the obligations on operations of the former USSR. He told that a 39-year-old trade dispute has been settled in which it was decided that Pakistan would return USD$ 93.5 million within 90 days of the signing of the agreement.
The House was told that the National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) has been instructed to complete all codal formalities and disperse the amounts as per the Cabinet’s decision. The minister hoped that this would prove as a catalyst for further bilateral trade enhancement and cooperation between Pakistan and Russia.