KARACHI - The State Bank of Pakistan has expressed concern that the recent turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region could influence the flow of remittances to Pakistan in coming months. At the same time, the central bank assumes that the inflow of remittances would continue its current trend for the remaining months of FY11 as there are no immediate risks to the external current account balance. The financial account inflows such as foreign direct and portfolio investments, on the other hand, have remained fairly modest during July-February, FY11; almost half the level of inflows seen in the corresponding period of last year, which was also small compared to historical levels, the SBP monetary policy document said. The overall balance of payments position appears to be strong at the moment with a gradual build-up of foreign exchange reserves and a stable foreign exchange market. However, given the uncertainty with respect to foreign inflows, the developments in the external sector will need to be monitored closely in the upcoming months, it said. According to SBP document, there is growing uncertainty in the global economic environment also. The popular uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa and unprecedented damage to the Japanese economy because of an historic earthquake and tsunami have shaken the global economy once again, which has yet to fully recover from the repercussions of the financial and economic crises of advanced economies. One consequence of these uncertain times has been high international commodity prices, especially of oil. So far, the terms of trade shock has been favourable for Pakistans economy. More than 90 percent of the incremental increase in export earnings during July - February, FY11 over the corresponding period of last year has been due to high international prices of Pakistans exports. The contribution of high import prices, particularly of oil, to the import bill has been relatively low, but is substantial and rising, it mentioned.