Sep 06, 2023
Due to the limited foreign exchange reserves, Pakistan's textile and apparel import has remained sluggish in the first half of this year. In June, the import value of textile and apparel was only $200 million, with a monthly average import value of around $271 million for the first half of 2023, which represents a 1/3 decrease compared to the monthly average import value in the first half of the 2022. However, the recent development is that the State Bank of Pakistan has lifted all import restrictions to meet the requirements for disbursement of IMF loans, which will provide relatively loose conditions for import settlement transactions in the future.
The quality of Pakistani cotton is inconsistent, and in recent years, the country's reliance on imported cotton has deepened. As the major category of textile imports, the volume of cotton imports from Pakistan has gradually decreased to a recent low since Apr. In June, the import volume was only 23,300 tons, nearly 2/3 less than the same period last year. From January to June 2023, the total cotton imports in Pakistan amounted to approximately 163,300 tons. With the Pakistani new cotton hitting the market after July, the domestic cotton supply is relatively abundant, which helps stabilize the domestic cotton prices. Consequently, the cotton import volume is expected to remain at a seasonal low level.