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FDI slips to $523 million in July-Jan

Karachi: Foreign investors are still reluctant to enter Pakistan, and even change in the leadership after 2013 elections failed to change their perception, the current FDI data reflects.

The State Bank reported on Monday that during the first seven months (July-Feb) of 2013-14, foreign direct investment (FDI) inflow stood at $523m while it was $528m during the same period last year.

Total investment, including portfolio investment, fell compared to last year. During the first seven months, it was $640m while it was $663m during the same period last year.

Largest trading partner United Arab of Emirates’ net investment during the first five months was just $4m.

Regional friends like Saudi Arabia and Qatar’s net investment were negative which means these countries were disinvesting.

Net outflows from Pakistan for the two countries were $29m and $34m, respectively.

It was only Kuwait among the Arab countries that invested a net sum of $10.6m.

China did not show any improvement in the confidence while investing in Pakistan. China has been improving its bilateral trade with Pakistan and volume has substantially increased during the last five years, but investment remained out of sight. In fact, China disinvested about $12m during the seven months.

Highest investment from the Far-Eastern country came from Hong Kong that was about $124m. However, Switzerland made the highest investment during this period ie $138m.

The US and UK invested $111m and $65m respectively during the same period.

Pakistan’s poor health of foreign exchange reserves remained under pressure as foreign investors did not show any interest.

The latest report of the State Bank showed that SBP’s reserves fell to $2.8bn while country’s total reserves stood at $7.6bn.



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