Country’s direct investment dips by 2.8pc to $1.382bn in July-Dec 2017

Total foreign investment surged by 7.4 per cent to $ 1.253 billion

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KARACHI: The country’s Direct Investment (DI) has dipped again by 2.8 per cent to $ 1.382 billion during the first half of the current fiscal year compared to $ 1.421 billion in the same period last year. Out of the total investment, Chinese companies invested $ 969.1 million in Pakistan during last six months.

In December 2017, the country has received $ 197 million only, in the head of DI compared to $ 692 million in the same period last year. The country received inflows of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of $ 242 million, while investors pulled back $ 45.2 million in the same period, the data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said here on Tuesday.

An analyst said, “The month of December was the worst as the country received only $ 197 million as DI compared to last five months.”

Foreign private investment of the country stood at $ 1.253 billion up by only 7.4 per cent in July-Dec compared to $ 1.167 billion in the same period last year.

During the first half of 2017, SBP recorded inflows of $ 2.450 billion under the head of Foreign Public Portfolio Investment (debt securities), increasing by 145.4 per cent during July-Dec this year which stood at $ 998 million in the same period last year, the data said.

In portfolio investment (equity market), the country recorded outflows of $ 128.4 million in July-Dec this year compared with a negative $ 254.4 million in July-Dec 2016.

The Chinese companies under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) invested $ 969.1 million in July-Dec 2017, while Malaysia invested $ 117.2 million and UAE invested $ 14.5 million in Pakistan.

Other major investments include $ 63.5 million from USA, $ 77.1 million from United Kingdom, $ 25.1 million from Japan, $ 21.7million from Italy, $ 48.4 million from Hungary and $ 21.9 million from France in different sectors, meanwhile, Norway, Kuwait and Finland pulled back their investment from Pakistan during July-Dec 2017.

The country recorded inflows of the direct investment of $ 1.721 billion compared with outflows of $ 339.7 million in July-Dec this year.

“The equity market has improved during December last year despite continuous downtrend at the Pakistan Stock Market,” the analyst claimed. There is no new major investment in the country and only Chinese companies are pouring their investment in their projects during the last six months.”

Pakistan has received $ 2.157 billion in the last fiscal year (2016-17) compared to $ 1.976 billion in 2015-16.

After touching the highest level of $ 24.6 billion, the forex reserves had declined to below $ 20 billion. However, after receiving $ 2.5 billion, the total reserves showed little strength touching $ 20.8 billion again, but is still sliding. The stock market has gained around 5,000 points during the last two weeks and stood at around 42,500 points after touching the highest level of 52,387 points in June this year.