Crisis-hit Pakistan allowed over 2,000 luxury vehicles to be imported even as shipments of essential consumer goods remained stuck at ports, according to a Dawn newspaper report.
Pakistan is grappling with a foreign exchange crisis, which has halted almost all imports. An IMF team is scheduled to visit the country this week to talk about an urgent bailout package.
The Dawn newspaper report said that Pakistan imported 164 luxury electric vehicles between July and December of 2022. There was also a jump in the imports of used luxury vehicles.
Pakistan imported nearly 1,990 such vehicles in the last six months, according to the report.
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Senior customs officials told the newspaper that most of the imports happened July to September, with a very small number of cars being imported October to December.
On the other hand, over 5,000 containers of with consumer and industrial goods were held up at ports, the newspaper reported.
Pakistan's foreign reserves have fallen to $3.7 billion -- a record low. The country is grappling with inflation, the aftermath of the disastrous flooding in 2022 and an acute energy shortage.
It only has enough for a few of weeks of imports, news agency AFP reported.
In response to the crisis, Pakistan's state bank, beginning this month, refused to issue letters of credit for all imports, barring food and medical supplies.
(With inputs from AFP)