Gonzalo Varela Profile picture
Trade and macro economist, policy-researcher, commentator, and failed squash star in Manila. Views expressed are mine, not my employer's.
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Jul 2, 2023 β€’ 12 tweets β€’ 4 min read
Today's my last day in #Pakistan. So I'll close with a thread on #trade trends. With @StateBank_Pak data recently released for 11 out of 12 months of FY23.

Here's a summary: πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡ 1) Exports declined in July-May FY23 by 9.4% relative to same period of FY22. Largest contraction for #goods. Services exports actually expanded by 3.4%.
Role of restrictions to import inputs may explain the difference.
Jan 25, 2023 β€’ 11 tweets β€’ 10 min read
. @StateBank_Pak has released disaggregated #trade data for #Pakistan, for the first half of FY23. Some analysis on main trends in πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ 1) #Pakistan's #exports have declined in H1 FY23 relative to H1 FY22 by 4%. The fall is driven by goods #exports that fell by 5.8%. in million USD
Jan 15, 2023 β€’ 10 tweets β€’ 10 min read
#Pakistan is going thru a complex #macro situation. At its heart is one symptom: the #CAD. Because the CAD has been perennial, this long-standing symptom translated into large foreign liabilities. Short πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡ a) The #CAD shows that #Pakistan has been consuming beyond what it produces. At its heart, there’s another perennial deficit: the fiscal deficit.
Jan 13, 2023 β€’ 11 tweets β€’ 17 min read
In our latest #growth report for #Pakistan, we examined, among other themes, the role of #FDI in the country. How much #Pakistan attracts, how much it could attract, the impact on #productivity and on #jobs.

A short πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡

openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/3… 1) #FDI is a useful source of financing for #developing countries. It is stable, and typically associated w/ #export growth, #job creation and #productivity upgrading. Does that all of that apply to #FDI in #Pakistan? Let's see...
Oct 27, 2022 β€’ 11 tweets β€’ 10 min read
We have now 3 months of disaggregated #trade data for FY23 in #Pakistan. Visible deceleration both on #exports and #imports. Some key elements in 🧡below: #Exports grew in Jul-Sep 23 versus Jul-Sep 22 by 5.3%. Slightly faster growth in #goods than in #services.

Aug 4, 2022 β€’ 10 tweets β€’ 12 min read
Now we have dissaggregated @StateBank_Pak data on #Pakistan's #trade performance for the full of the FY22.

This thread will show performance in #values. not #volumes. Keep in mind FY22 was extraordinary in terms of high #prices, both for #imports and #exports. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ§΅ 1\ #Exports reached record highs, both #goods and #services, increasing by 26.6 and 17.1% respectively w.r.t. FY21. Good export prices and a decent #export response played a role here. Note: June 2022 is preliminary. Figures are Jul-Jun FY22 and
May 20, 2022 β€’ 8 tweets β€’ 6 min read
A month ago I wrote this 🧡 on why #import duties were not the answer to #Pakistan's Balance of Payments constraints. #ImportBans are certainly not the answer either. Rather, they exacerbate the underlying problem. Five thoughts. πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡

1\ The usual: CAD results from a macro imbalance (Saving too low relative to investment, so foreign saving needed (borrowing) (CAD is the mirror image of borrowing from the rest of the world (financial account of BOP)). Fixing the CAD takes increasing saving (cool off demand).
May 8, 2022 β€’ 6 tweets β€’ 3 min read
Thank you for the feedback, dear Yousuf. If you read the article carefully, you will see this is specific & data driven. A short thread to explain. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ Figure 2 in the article is built from a careful analysis combining micro-level *data* from all listed firms in Pakistan, & effective rates of protection (calculated based on FBR data on import duties and the latest input output *data* from IFPRI. It conveys the key message. πŸ‘‡
Apr 25, 2022 β€’ 9 tweets β€’ 10 min read
Fast #import growth has overshadowed some very good news in #Pakistan. The latest release of disaggregated #trade data by @StateBank_Pak reveals that the first nine months of FY22 showed #record high #exports in real terms, since there's statistics.
Short πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡ w/ more results. 1\ #exports grew by 24.8% in the first 9 months of FY22 w.r.t. same period of FY21, reaching 23.7 bn for goods and 5.2 bn for services.

#Pakistan #trade
Apr 19, 2022 β€’ 9 tweets β€’ 9 min read
Higher #import duties to tackle the #BOP problem is the wrong advice. It won't deliver on the intended objective. Why? πŸ§΅πŸ‘‡ brecorder.com/news/40168085/… 1\ The #CAD is the result of a Saving/Investment imbalance. The sustainable solution to the #CAD entails policies that increase #saving.
Jan 27, 2022 β€’ 9 tweets β€’ 10 min read
With @StateBank_Pak releasing dissaggregated #trade data for December, we have a picture of the full 2021, which, despite #supply #chain disruptions worldwide, was 'good' for #Pakistan. Short thread below: 1\ #exports grew by 30.1% in 2021 w.r.t. 2020, with a strong pick up in merchandise, but also substantive in services.

#trade #Pakistan
May 28, 2021 β€’ 10 tweets β€’ 14 min read
On May 26th @StateBank_Pak released #Pakistan's disaggregated #trade statistics for April '21. We now have 10 months of the FY21. Some analysis in #thread below. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ #Pakistan #exports of #goods & #services grew by 6.2%., surpassing the US$25 billion mark. (2/n) Pakistan exports of goods and services, first 10 months of F
May 26, 2021 β€’ 5 tweets β€’ 6 min read
In the context of #Africa Day 2021, what's #Pakistan's untapped #export potential with that region? #thread πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ We have recently estimated #Pakistan's export potential at about US$88 billion. The untapped portion of that is close to US$61 billion.

thedocs.worldbank.org/en/doc/884b60a… 2/n
Nov 16, 2020 β€’ 13 tweets β€’ 13 min read
Wanted to analyze #Pakistan's #export performance, benchmarking with structural and aspirational countries, along 4 dimensions - #growth, #diversification, #quality, #survival. Thread below: πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ 1/n Since the turn of the century, #Pakistan has become a more inward oriented economy, with exports/GDP falling from 16 to 10%.
Nov 24, 2019 β€’ 11 tweets β€’ 5 min read
Nice article by @AliKhizar. To add to the dialogue, I'd like to share a few thoughts: Pakistan moved into a current account surplus after years of a deficit. There seems to be a debate on whether that’s a good or a bad thing. Are CAD β€œbad”? As with everything in economics, the answer is β€˜it depends’. #PakThink 1/n