Pakistan Economy Profile – January 2014

Decades of internal political disputes and low levels of foreign investment have led to slow growth and underdevelopment in Pakistan. Agriculture accounts for more than one-fifth of output and two-fifths of employment. Textiles account for most of Pakistan’s export earnings, and Pakistan’s failure to expand a viable export base for other manufactures has left the country vulnerable to shifts in world demand. Official unemployment is under 6%, but this fails to capture the true picture, because much of the economy is informal and underemployment remains high.

Over the past few years, low growth and high inflation, led by a spurt in food prices, have increased the amount of poverty – the UN Human Development Report estimated poverty in 2011 at almost 50% of the population. Inflation has worsened the situation, climbing from 7.7% in 2007 to almost 12% for 2011, before declining to 10% in 2012. As a result of political and economic instability, the Pakistani rupee has depreciated more than 40% since 2007. The government agreed to an International Monetary Fund Standby Arrangement in November 2008 in response to a balance of payments crisis.

Although the economy has stabilized since the crisis, it has failed to recover. Foreign investment has not returned, due to investor concerns related to governance, energy, security, and a slow-down in the global economy. Remittances from overseas workers, averaging over $1 billion a month since March 2011, remain a bright spot for Pakistan. However, after a small current account surplus in fiscal year 2011 (July 2010/June 2011), Pakistan’s current account turned to deficit in fiscal year 2012, spurred by higher prices for imported oil and lower prices for exported cotton. Pakistan remains stuck in a low-income, low-growth trap, with growth averaging about 3% per year from 2008 to 2012.

Pakistan must address long standing issues related to government revenues and energy production in order to spur the amount of economic growth that will be necessary to employ its growing population. Other long term challenges include expanding investment in education and healthcare, and reducing dependence on foreign donors. 

Per Capita annual income crosses $1044



$24.66 billion (2012 est.)

$26.3 billion (2011 est.)


Exports – commodities

Textiles (garments, bed linen, cotton cloth, yarn), rice, leather goods, sports goods, chemicals, manufactures, carpets and rugs


Exports – partners

US 15%, UAE 9.7%, Afghanistan 9.5%, China 9.2%, UK 5%, Germany 4.5% (2012 est.)



$40.82 billion (2012 est.)

$38.93 billion (2011 est.)


Imports – commodities

Petroleum, petroleum products, machinery, plastics, transportation equipment, edible oils, paper and paperboard, iron and steel, tea


Imports – partners

UAE 17.2%, China 15%, Saudi Arabia 11.2%, Kuwait 8.9%, Malaysia 5.4%, Japan 4.3% (2012 est.)


GDP (purchasing power parity)

$514.6 billion (2012 est.)

$496.3 billion (2011 est.)

$481.7 billion (2010 est.)

Note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$230.5 billion (2012 est.)


GDP – real growth rate

3.7% (2012 est.)

3% (2011 est.)

3.1% (2010 est.)


GDP – per capita (PPP)

$2,900 (2012 est.)

$2,800 (2011 est.)

$2,800 (2010 est.)

Note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP – composition by sector

Agriculture: 20.1%

Industry: 25.5%

Services: 54.4% (2012 est.)


Population below poverty line

22.3% (FY05/06 est.)


Labor force

60.36 million

Note: extensive export of labor, mostly to the Middle East, and use of child labor (2012 est.)


Labor force – by occupation

Agriculture: 45.1%

Industry: 20.7%

Services: 34.2% (2010 est.)


Unemployment rate

5.6% (2012 est.)

5.6% (2011 est.)

Note: substantial underemployment exists


Youth ages 15-24

Total: 7.7%

Male: 7%

Female: 10.5% (2008)


Household income or consumption by percentage share

Lowest 10%: 9.9%

Highest 10%: 39.3% (FY07/08)


Distribution of family income – Gini index

30.6 (FY07/08)

41 (FY98/99)


Investment (gross fixed)

10.9% of GDP (2012 est.)



Revenues: $29.51 billion

Expenditures: $44.19 billion (2012 est.)


Taxes and other revenues

12.8% of GDP (2012 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-6.4% of GDP (2012 est.)


Public debt

50.4% of GDP (2012 est.)

60.1% of GDP (2011 est.)


Inflation rate (consumer prices)

11.3% (2012 est.)

11.9% (2011 est.)


Central bank discount rate

12% (31 January 2012 est.)

14% (31 December 2010 est.)


Commercial bank prime lending rate

12.2% (31 December 2012 est.)

14.12% (31 December 2011 est.)


Stock of narrow money

$60.68 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

$56.34 billion (31 December 2011 est.)


Stock of money

$NA (31 December 2008)

$52.76 billion (31 December 2007)


Stock of quasi money

$NA (31 December 2008)

$18.42 billion (31 December 2007)


Stock of broad money

$76.16 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

$71.36 billion (31 December 2010 est.)


Stock of domestic credit

$92.06 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

$86.19 billion (31 December 2011 est.)


Market value of publicly traded shares

$32.76 billion (31 December 2011)

$38.17 billion (31 December 2010)

$33.24 billion (31 December 2009)


Agriculture – products

Cotton, wheat, rice, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; milk, beef, mutton, eggs


Textiles and apparel, food processing, pharmaceuticals, construction materials, paper products, fertilizer, shrimp


Industrial production growth rate

3% (2011 est.)


Current Account Balance

-$4.632 billion (2012 est.)

$268 million (2011 est.)


Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$13.5 billion (30 November 2012 est.)

$18.09 billion (31 December 2011 est.)


Debt – external

$55.98 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

$58.27 billion (31 December 2011 est.)


Stock of direct foreign investment – at home

$22.38 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

$21.88 billion (31 December 2011 est.)


Stock of direct foreign investment – abroad 

$1.482 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

$1.432 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Pakistan Current Economy is in very bad Shape, people are loosing faith in government for last 6 years. It is time that all Pakistani leader take a joint action for the economy.

Remittances from OVERSEAS PAKISTANIS of about $20 billion per year is keeping the Pakistan meeting his international obligation and keep the country running.  Pakistan Government should thankful for their support of Pakistan and should give them the full right to vote and run for the public office in Pakistan.

Pakistan should fellow Turkey for Economy reform and Development. Turkey Economic Reforms working well, Legal Reform law was adopted and working well, Social Reform law was adopted and working well, Government Reform process moving in the right direction.

Turkey rapid economical development present Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan & President Abdullah Gul Honest and Good Economic Management in Turkey.

Best Regards,
Habib Syed,
President, Karachi to Istanbul Free Trade Area Business Council Montreal, Canada. January 29, 2014.

View Hammad Ansari's profile on LinkedIn


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