Key highlights from the 2023-24 Economic Survey

During a press conference in Islamabad on Tuesday, Pakistan’s Finance Minister, Muhammad Aurangzeb, presented the economic survey for the fiscal year 2024, unveiling Pakistan’s challenges in meeting its economic objectives. This release comes ahead of the presentation of the federal budget for the fiscal year 2024-25, scheduled for June 12 (Wednesday).

The Pakistan Economic Survey, an annual report, encapsulates the country’s economic trajectory for the outgoing financial year, spanning from July 1, 2023, to June 30, 2024. It plays a vital role in the federal budget process, providing insights into Pakistan’s economic landscape.

This pre-budget report offers an overview of Pakistan’s economy, highlighting its performance across various sectors, including GDP growth, inflation, trade, and investment. Additionally, it delves into sector-specific achievements in agriculture, industry, and services.

Key highlights from the economic survey include:

– In the fiscal year 2022-23, GDP contracted by 0.2%, with the PKR depreciating by 29% and foreign exchange reserves declining to cover two weeks of imports.

– Real GDP for 2023-24 (July-March) grew by 2.4%, a positive shift from the previous year’s contraction, but below the targeted 3.5%.

– The agricultural sector showed significant growth, expanding by 6.25%, surpassing both the targeted 3.5% and the previous year’s growth of 1.55%.

– Challenges faced by the Large Scale Manufacturing (LSM) sector included high interest rates and energy costs.

– Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) tax collection increased by 30.6% to Rs7,361.9 billion from July to April, falling short of the government’s target of Rs9,415 billion.

– Foreign exchange reserves improved, surpassing $9 billion.

– Inflation rates decreased from 38% to 11%, leading the central bank to reduce the policy rate.

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