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[DIPLOMACY] American Dream
2020.05.02 23:29 artistique1[DIPLOMACY] American Dream
CONSTITUTION AVENUE, ISLAMABAD As you might be aware by this time, we are in the process of kickstarting the most ambitious planned city project in the world based around a special economic industrial zone focused on high-tech manufacturing and silicon semiconductor fabrication. As ambitious as this project is, we have a very good feeling about this as our high-potential, high-risk undeveloped sector has all the ingredients required to make a big move into the international tech supply market; all that is needed is the support of some of the largest and most influential tech companies in the world. Megacorporations such as Mitsubishi, Sony, and Panasonic from Japan and Huawei from China have already committed to the project among several others, a clear sign that this project is bound to succeed. Currently, our manufacturing sector is mostly dependent on natural processed goods and sporting equipment such as linens, clothing materials, surgical instruments, and footballs. The most high-tech of our manufacturing is our growing automotive sector which, while a decent sized export, is still not enough to fully the gear the nation towards an export-oriented economy. The deficit in our trade is quite massive with exports constituting about half of what we import and we believe that an expansion into the alluring and profitable high-tech manufacturing industry could solve this. You may read more about the SEZ here. Electronics manufacturing The American technology sector is renowned across the world for its innovative, reliable, and popular products and services. Their expansion into global developing markets has been a trend since the early dotnet boom and with competitive manufacturing available in more and more countries, domestic manufacturing is being rapidly shifted to locations with more economically favorable wage rates. With this in mind, we invite Apple Inc. to establish an assembly plant in the SEZ as well as outlets across all major cities such as Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan, and Islamabad, as well as the new planned city. As several companies that are currently contracted by Apple to manufacture its components have also been invited to establish foundries in the city, an assembly plant would significantly cut costs as all components of the iPhone and iPad would essentially be produced in the same location. We'd also recommend that manufacturing plants for other Apple products such as the AirPods and accessories also be established in the city to take advantage of unrivaled taxation rates and competitive costs of operation. Taking advantage of the large land area that has been allotted to the city boundaries, we can offer a huge 150 acres campus in the heart of the industrial zone to accommodate offices and manufacturing sites. The site will be able to host upwards of ten thousand employees. We would like to invite Google to establish a major regional office in the planned city to serve as the headquarters for all operations in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. We can offer Google a land plot of 150 acres to establish a large campus in the city to accommodate upwards of 10,000 employees. We also invite Google to establish at least three factories in the city to manufacture its products to be sold into the international and domestic market as well as an assembly plant for the Google Pixel phones. Amazon has solidified its position as the foremost leading e-commerce corporation in the world and their recent expansions and forays into new sectors have dramatically enhanced the company's global footprint. Despite the major market present in Pakistan, the company has not implicitly launched operations in the country for whatever reasons. But now, with the planned tech city project already making great strides with several agreements signed with major companies such as Huawei, Mitsubishi, Sony, Rolls-Royce, and BAE Systems to begin direct operations, we believe the time is better than ever for Amazon to enter the large and rapidly growing Pakistani market with a bang. We propose the establishment of a distribution center responsible for delivering products both domestically and, especially, into the international market. The distribution center, the largest of its kind in the region, would be responsible for handling all Amazon business in the Middle East and North Africa region. We also invite Amazon to establish a major factory in the tech city for the manufacturing of its line of Alexa AI personal assistants. These are currently manufactured in China and we believe that our tech hub offers a more cost-effective manufacturing operation due to significantly lower taxes and more favorable wage rates. There is also the case of our governance not being as tariff as some others such as China or India. We extend similar invites to major tech giants HP Inc. and IBM to begin direct operations through manufacturing and supply in Pakistan. We offer HP to establish three factories in the tech city to manufacture the following products: HP's line of consumer laptops (Pavilion, Envy, and Omen) as well as its line of business laptops (ProBook and EliteBook); the second to produce HP's printers; and the third to manufacture HP business desktop workstations. All products will be marketed towards the global market with the factories significantly enhancing HP's production capabilities due to the lower costs of operation. The same offer is extended to IBM to establish a factory in the tech city for the production of its workstations as well as two data centers such as alphaWorks and SPSS to develop software solutions in data analytics. Mechanical and automotive manufacturing We would like to invite Boeing to establish a factory in the planned city for the manufacturing of wings for its major airliners and other aircraft that are offered by Boeing into the global market through Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Secondly, we'd like to offer the company to establish two more factories in the future for the production of jet engines and a major factory to assemble entire Boeing jet airliners. We would like to invite renowned companies General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, and Tesla to establish factories in the planned cities to build products either directly or through subsidiaries such as Chevrolet, Dodge, and Cadillac. We invite these companies to establish at least one plant to enter the Middle Eastern and South Asian automotive market. Semiconductor fabrication Now onto the main course. While a hub of electronics and automotive manufacturing and innovation, the main driving force behind the tech city will be the several semiconductor fabrication plants that will be built there. Semiconductor fabrication is both a delicate and a very high-tech sector and is currently dominated by Asian nations such as Taiwan and China. We believe that we have tons of undeveloped potential that could be developed over the course of the next five to seven years, allowing both fabless and IDM to flourish in Pakistan due to lower costs of starting work and the very high returns on the cheap manufacturing in the country. Similar to prior proposals to Nintendo, Sony, BAE Systems, Huawei,and Mitsubishi, we'd like to establish these fab plants at the planned special economic zone in Greater Karachi and across various other cities where foreign investment is more accessible and easy to make due to various incentives. The corporate taxes in the SEZ will be almost none for the first seven years, allowing the invited companies to establish their footprints easily. For this reason, we would like to invite some of the most innovative and export-oriented semiconductor foundries from the US to establish a presence in the SEZ. We would like to invite Intel, ON Semiconductor, Microchip, Texas Instruments, Micron, and AMD to establish semiconductor and integrated circuits fabrication plants in the tech city. We'd like to propose the establishment of one (or more, if any of these companies wish to do so) in the city for the manufacture and fabrication of semiconductors, microchips, and integrated circuits. Specifically, we'd like Intel to begin building their memory chips (DRAMs, SRAMs), SSDs, and new advanced microprocessors at these new facilities. We extend this same offer to AMD. Estimated FDI We estimate that the requested FDI would amount to the following figures, classified according to type.
E-commerce and services
The profits on these investments are expected to be threefold within the next decade.
2019.11.06 11:19 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 135.
-Pak army to generate own electricity to reduce burden on economy Pakistan Army is all set to generate electricity for its garrisons and establishments across Pakistan to cut their expenditure on power which is estimated to be around Rs 15 billion for 240 MW (megawatt), a private news outlet has reported. As per reports, the Pakistan army is planning on harnessing renewable energy through solar parks with an aim to establish 1-5MW solar parks in each garrison. The pilot project will generate 40MW energy and no public money will be used on solar parks for 25 years. This step will reduce the burden on the Army’s budget as a huge portion of it goes to electricity payments to various electricity distribution companies, and the costs are rising due to increasing tariffs. The Defence Division has informed the federal cabinet that army possesses robust distribution systems, which means that it can easily shift to renewable energy alternatives. -PIA Launches Mobile App for Flight Booking Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has launched a mobile application in collaboration with Turkish IT company Hitit. The app will let users book and confirm flights through their smartphones. The app allows users to; Book a flight, Check flight status, Check flight schedules, View booking details. -Government to Upgrade Pakistan Refinery for $1 Billion The government is planning to upgrade Pakistan Refinery Limited (PRL) at an estimated cost of $1 billion to achieve self-sufficiency in the refining sector and bringing down the oil import bill. “We have offered the Chinese government to participate in the PRL up-gradation project, and Chinese companies are interested in it", official sources told APP. At present, around 55 percent of diesel and petrol used in Pakistan is imported, while 40 to 45 percent comes from local refineries. The sources said the government is encouraging the establishment of new oil refineries and modernizing the existing facilities to meet the country’s needs indigenously. -First group of Indian Sikh pilgrims arrive in Pakistan for Guru Nanak's birth anniversary The first group of Sikh pilgrims arrived in Pakistan on Tuesday to take part in the 550th birth anniversary ceremonies of Baba Guru Nanak Dev Ji. The pilgrims arrived through the international border crossing at Wagah. Chairman Evacuee Trust Property Board Dr Amer Ahmad and Pakistan Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee President Satwant Singh welcomed the 2,500 pilgrims upon their arrival in Pakistan. Another 2,000 pilgrims will arrive in Pakistan on Wednesday. The pilgrims praised Prime Minister Imran Khan and said the premier had achieved what could not be done in the last 72 years. -‘Current account deficit falls 64pc, FDI surges 137pc in first quarter’ Economic Affairs Minister Hammad Azhar has said the current account deficit declined by 64pc during the first quarter of the ongoing fiscal year (FY20), adding that the primary budget balance witnessed a surplus of Rs285 billion during the same period. Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, the minister claimed that the economy has now started picking up as the indicators, including investment inflows, foreign exchange reserves, revenue collection, current account balance, trade balance, ease of doing business, Public Sector Development Programme spending, stock market performance and inflation, were showing positive signs. He said that the total foreign investment in Pakistan increased by a whopping 137pc during 1QFY20. “Pakistan has witnessed a positive foreign portfolio investment of $350 million in this quarter, which is the first positive inflow after a gap of three years,” he added. The minister said that foreign exchange reserves, which were constantly reducing by $500 million per month since 2017, have been stabilised despite the fact that the government had made record payments to debt servicing. “The government broke all records of paying off the foreign loans; the government paid $10.5 billion worth of loans last year and it would repeat the same this year.” -Pakistan’s Trade Deficit Fell by 33.5% in July-October 2019 For the first time in fifteen years, exports are rising with imports decreasing simultaneously. Pakistan’s trade deficit over the first four months of the fiscal year 2019-20 decreased significantly by 33.5%, according to a report by the Ministry of Commerce. The government’s battle against the trade deficit is finally bearing fruit, as the trade deficit went down for the fourth month in a row. The trade deficit fell to $7.8 billion during July-October of FY19-20 as compared to $11.70 billion during the same period last year. Abdul Razak Dawood, Advisor to Prime Minister for Commerce, Textile, Industry, and Production said that trade stats for Jul-Oct 2019 indicate that annual trade deficit may decrease by $12 billion to $19 billion (from $31 billion) in 2019-20. ”With this, coupled with workers remittances, will positively address our Current Account Deficit woes,” he added. -Bull-run continues at Pakistan Stock Exchange Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Tuesday witnessed a bullish trend as the KSE-100 index gained 80 points to close at 35,358 points, ARY News reported. A total of 308,484,510 shares were traded compared to the trade of 207,782,700 shares during the previous day, whereas the value of shares traded during the day stood at Rs 8.678 billion compared to Rs 8.480 billion during last trading day. In total 370 companies transacted shares in the Pakistan Stock Exchange market on Tuesday, out of which 194 witnessed gains and 153 sustained losses whereas the share price of 23 companies remained unchanged. -KSE-100 Crosses 35000 Point Mark for the First Time in Four Months The stock market started the week with a bullish rally as the benchmark index, KSE-100 index surged over 900 points in intra-day trading, crossing the 35,000-mark. The bourse managed to cross the 35000 point mark for the first time since July 2019. The KSE-100 index maintained an uptrend from the moment trading began as investors shed fears and resumed buying activity. The KSE-100 Index touched an intraday high of 931 points to stand at 35,308 points. -In a first, 300 MW Coal Power Plant inaugurated in Gwadar under CPEC In a first, 300 MW Coal Power Plant inaugurated in Gwadar under China Pakistan Economic Corridor project. Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Khusro Bakhtiar inaugurated the 300 Megawatt coal power plant in Gwadar. Vice Chairman National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) Ning Jizhe, Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani, senior officials and Chinese delegation members were also present on the occasion. Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Planning said that benefits of CPEC are being reaped as various projects under this monumental framework are being completed or nearing completion. -Pakistan Govt. to Launch Auto-Disabling Syringes Soon According to Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health, Dr. Zafar Mirza, the PTI-led federal government has finalized the strategy for introducing auto-disabling syringes in all public and private hospitals in the country. An auto-disabling syringe automatically becomes unusable after one use. These syringes will help to contain the spread of diseases and infections arising from the repeated use of single-use syringes. By the end of April 2020, single-use syringes will be replaced with auto-disabling syringes in all public and private health facilities, said Dr. Zafar Mirza. -Pakistan absolved of paying $1.2b penalty to Karkey Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government achieved massive success when it resolved the $1.2 billion award against the country in the Karkey case, announced by International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in August 2017. The statement was made by Prime Minister Imran Khan on social media on Monday wherein it was stated that the PTI government with the help of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had amicably resolved the Karkey dispute and saved Pakistan’s $1.2 billion penalty imposed by ICSID. The premier congratulated the government’s negotiating team for doing an excellent job. -Pakistan listed in top five at #TechWomen19 If you could solve one problem in your country, what would it be was a question asked at the beginning of #techwomen19 as emerging leaders gathered to present their action plan and the process of strategising the solution to that one problem. Team Pakistan not only presented but was also listed amongst the top five pitches. Their initiative was Bacha-o which reflected the problem of child sexual abuse using a digital platform. Their mission is to make every child safe which has been on a rise as per the recent report by the Pakistani government. -National Payment System Strategy Intends to Boost Pakistan’s GDP Growth to 7% State Bank of Pakistan has rolled out the National Payments System Strategy aimed at boosting Pakistan’s GDP growth to 7% and creating 4 million jobs in the country thanks to customers migrating to electronic payment systems. Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Dr. Reza Baqir launched the National Payment Systems Strategy (NPSS) in an event at its headquarters in Karachi. The strategy claims to attract $263 billion in new deposits with a potential market of $36 billion by 2025. The objectives of the National Payments System Strategy are to make recommendations to design a National Payments System complying with international standards and best practices, tailored for specific circumstances and providing a safe, efficient and inclusive payment system in Pakistan. Migration to efficient electronic payments stimulates consumption and trade, benefiting the economy. -Pakistan’s Vulture Population Shows Signs of Recovery Vultures have been on the verge of extinction in Pakistan. However, in recent years, nature’s ‘garbage disposal’ workers have shown signs of recovery. According to a World Wildlife Fund (WWF) report, the population of vultures found in the Thar Desert, and scattered areas in southern Punjab, Azad Kashmir, and southwestern Balochistan had declined by up to 95 percent since the 1990s. However, ornithologists have recently spotted hundreds of vultures alongside a water reservoir in Gorano in Thar – a new hope for the endangered species. The reservoir was recently built to pump water out of the coalfield. Other than that, experts have also found 60 new nests in Nangarparkar and Islamkot areas Naveed Ali Soomro, who heads the IUCN’s vulture conservation project, said his team spotted nearly 300 vultures in the area back in July. -SWVL Plans on Investing $25 Million in Pakistan By now you must have heard about SWVL. SWVL, pronounced as “Swivle” rhymes with chisel, is an app based bus hailing service which is en route to revolutionising the Pakistani commute system by running buses on fixed routes that users can book seats in by using the app. SWVL is a global mobility leader in mass transit which was launched in Nairobi over six months ago and recently launched its operations in Lahore in July this year. It is the first start up in the mass transit ecosystem to launch in all three metropolitan cities: Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad. SWVL helps you to travel more for less, giving you a safe and reliable ride in air-conditioned, neat and clean buses with spacious seats. -Cement Exports Grow 16.5% During July-October 2019 According to data released by the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA), cement export has registered a healthy growth of 16.50%, reaching 2.8 million tonnes in July-October of this fiscal year compared with last year. The local despatches were 13.312 million tons in this period, 2.3% higher than 13.011 million tons of local despatches in FY 2018-19. As a result, total cement despatches in the first four months of this fiscal stood at 16.117 million tons, 4.53% higher than 15.419 million tons recorded last year. -Government to present first Geographical Indication bill in parliament soon After a historic development related to introduction of the country’s first e-commerce policy last month, the government is now going to table the first Geographical Indication (GI) Bill in the National Assembly to protect ownership rights of goods produced in the country. According to a high official at the Ministry of Commerce, the draft bill of GI law which was approved by parliament in August 2019, is all set to be tabled in parliament soon for approval. On the request of the ministry, the bill is being introduced in the parliament in the next session of parliament, said the official, adding that the same has also been approved by the Cabinet Committee for Disposal of Legislative Cases (CCLC). According to the official, Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce, Industry and Textile Razak Dawood has also taken up the issue with concerned officials at parliament house to table the bill in the next session. -Kamyab Jawan Program receives 0.9 mln applications in two weeks The Prime Minister’s youth loan scheme titled Kamyab Jawan Program has received 0.9 million applications within two weeks, according to a report. According to Radio Pakistan, youth were showing immense interest in the loan scheme as on a daily basis around 50,000 to 100,000 applications are being received. The government had created opportunities to open the doors of socio-economic empowerment of youth, an official told Radio Pakistan. He said 1 million youth will get benefit from the scheme and an amount of Rs. 100 billion has been allocated for the “Kamyab Jawan Programme” to facilities one million youth across the country. He said that this unique and ambitious programme aimed at providing soft loans to the youth of the country and creating job opportunities for them with having followed up strategy. -Upto 35 Pakistani companies to attend China Import Expo in Shanghai Over 35 Pakistani companies will participate and showcase their products including top textile, leather, sports goods, surgical equipment, home furnishing and other products at the 2nd China International Import Expo (CIIE) scheduled to be held in Shanghai from November 5 to 10. Advisor on Commerce, Textile, Industry and Production and Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood will lead the Pakistani delegation. Pakistan’s top business executives will attend. “As many as 35 top export-oriented Pakistani companies will display textile, leather and sports goods, surgical equipment, home furnishing and other products at their stalls set up at the expo in an effort to enhance exports to China,” Badar uz Zaman, Commercial Counsellor, Embassy of Pakistan, Beijing confirmed here on Sunday. These companies export rice, textile, garments, leather products, carpet, handicrafts, wood furniture, sports and natural herbal products and are set to look at opportunities in the Chinese market to enhance exports from Pakistan, he added. -Pakistan unveils strategy to move to cashless economy Pakistan has launched a strategy for transforming its payment system from the one mainly based on cash to an almost cashless system with the support of the World Bank, as it will launch a mobile app and install one million digital access points nationwide over the next three years. “The cost of cash right now is huge in Pakistan…[it] is one of the countries which stands out with a very large ratio of cash,” said State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Reza Baqir, before he along with World Bank President David Malpass formally launched the National Payment System Strategy (NPSS) on Friday. The strategy lays out the road map for a modern and digital payment network. It will make it easier for new companies; banks and fintechs to enter the market and also aid people in accessing the financial system, “which means for the people, it will be easier to make payments, it will be easier to receive payments, it will be easier to save and it will be easier to plan for your financial future,” Baqir added. -World Bank approves $1.9bn for Sindh projects The World Bank has agreed to provide financial assistance of $1.93 billion to the Sindh government for various new projects, including the revamping of Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) and modernisation of Sukkur and Guddu barrages, a private media outlet reported on Friday. The accord was reached in a meeting between Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and World Bank President David Malpass. During the one-on-one meeting, matters related to mutual interests, avenues to enhance bilateral collaboration, and the ongoing development projects came under discussion. Speaking on the occasion, the chief minister termed Sukkur and Guddu barrages as the backbone of the rural economy. The WB agreed to provide Rs328 million for the uplift of the barrages. Earlier on November 1, WB President David Malpass met with Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad to discuss matters related to the country’s economy. -Footwear exports surge 26pc in 1QFY20 Footwear exports from the country witnessed an increase of 26.3pc during the first quarter of the current financial year (1QFY20), as compared to the corresponding period of last year. Pakistan exported footwear worth $37.062 million during July-September FY20 against the exports of $29.344 million during the same period of last fiscal, according to latest data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). Among footwear products, the exports of leather footwear witnessed a growth of 22pc as it surged from $26.2 million in 1QFY19 to $31.961 million in 1QFY20. However, the export of canvas footwear decreased slightly by 6.06pc, from $0.033 million to $0.031 million. -Apple announces official distributor in Pakistan Thanks to PTA’s tighter policies, things in Pakistan’s smartphone markets are changing. One of the major changes is that smartphones, including iPhones, will be imported via legal channels. The news first surfaced four months ago but is only being implemented now. Mercantile Pacific, Singapore, a leading mobile phone distribution company, has been appointed as the official regional distributor in Pakistan and Afghanistan by Apple. -Kuwait Airways to Resume Flights to Karachi After 19 Years Kuwait Airways is keen to resume its weekly flight from the capital of Kuwait to Karachi. There is an immense potential for the airline to grab a share of the market in Pakistan, particularly in Karachi. In early 2000, the airline had discontinued its flight operations in Karachi when its office situated in Sheraton Hotel (now Movenpick Hotel) was destroyed by a bomb blast. It had suspended its operations in Pakistan but later it resumed its flights to Lahore and Islamabad from its capital. -Pakistan is one of the Best Countries to Make a Living for Social Entrepreneurs: Forbes Social entrepreneurship is constantly on the rise in Pakistan owing to increasing startup culture in the country in recent years. In a recently conducted survey by Thomas Reuters Foundation and Deutsche Bank’s CSR Made For Good Global, Pakistan has made huge strides in terms of being a favorable country for social entrepreneurs. The overall ranking for Pakistan has improved from 2016’s 32nd place to 14th this year. Note that this survey is conducted every three years. -NHA breaks its own record of revenue collection The National Highway Authority (NHA) has broken its own record of the previous fiscal year as its revenue reached Rs10.41 billion in the first quarter of the current financial year. The positive policies of the federal government have started bearing fruit as the National Highway Authority (NHA), an organisation working under the Ministry of Communications, collected record revenue in the first quarter of the current year up to 32 per cent which stood at Rs7.46 billion last year. The ministry has released a quarterly evaluation report of its income as the overall revenue collection of the institution increased up to more than Rs20 billion during the tenure of Federal Minister Murad Saeed. -Textile exports up 2.9pc to $3.37bn in 1QFY20 Textile exports from the country grew by 2.95pc during the first quarter of the current financial year (1QFY20) as compared to the exports of the corresponding period of last year. Textile products worth $3,371,974 million were exported during the July-September period, as compared to $3,275,303 million worth of exports during the same period of last year. According to data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, the export of raw cotton increased by 53.65pc, as around 6,980 metric tonnes of raw cotton (valued at $10,828 million) was exported as compared to the 4,619 metric tonnes ($7,047 million) exported in Q1FY19. Meanwhile, 3,778 metric tonnes of yarn (other than cotton yarn), worth $9,462 million, was exported during the period under review, as compared to the exports of 2,457 metric tonnes, valuing $7,759 million, during the same period of last year. -Cabinet approves Electric Motor Vehicle Policy The federal cabinet on Tuesday approved the Electric Motor Vehicle Policy, as Prime Minister Imran Khan directed his economic team to formulate strategies that could ensure job creation and youth empowerment. Expressing satisfaction on the overall state of “improvement in economy” during a cabinet meeting, the PM directed the cabinet members to ensure the development projects go ahead without any obstacles for the economic uplift of the country. During the meeting, the PM reiterated that the government would not back away from reforms agenda “as it is agenda for the development and progress of Pakistan”. “The government wants to transform challenges into opportunities,” he added. Briefing the reporters in Islamabad after the cabinet meeting, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said the prime minister has also ordered all ministries to ensure timely completion public sector development projects in the next three months. -Pakistan, China agree to break ground for ML-I project in six months The meeting of 9th Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) concluded in Islamabad on Tuesday with both sides expressing satisfaction over the ongoing and planned projects under CPEC. However, no new mega project was included in the multibillion-dollar framework. The 9th JCC discussed the proposals forwarded by six Joint Working Groups of the two countries, which included industrial cooperation, transfer of technology and cooperation in agricultural, mineral, oil and gas and steel sectors. The major development in the 9th JCC was related to the much-awaited mega railway project, ML-I, which according to the planning minister would see practical development within the next 3 to 6 months. “We will be able to perform the groundbreaking of the mega project in next 6 months as processes related to financing are being finalised with China,” the minister said while addressing a press conference along with Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing after the conclusion of 9th JCC in Islamabad. -Pakistan decides to solve $117m trade dispute with Russia After restoring strategic relations with Russia, Pakistan is all set to solve its long-pending trade dispute worth $117 million with Moscow, as it allowed Pakistani Ambassador to Russia to ink an inter-governmental agreement with Russia, Pakistan Today has learnt. Sources privy to the development informed that the federal cabinet in its meeting on 29th October had considered a Commerce Division’s summary titled “Agreement between the Government of Pakistan and Government of Russia on Settlement of Mutual Financial Claims and Obligations on Operations of the former USSR”. They said after necessary deliberations, the federal cabinet granted its necessary approval in this regard. -Cutlery exports surge 18.6pc in three months FY20 The export of cutlery from the country witnessed an increase of 18.66pc during the first quarter of the current financial year (1QFY20) as compared to the corresponding period of last year. Pakistan exported cutlery worth $23.829 million during July-September 2019-20, as against the exports of $20.082 million during July-September 2018-19, according to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). On a year-on-year basis, cutlery exports during September 2019 increased by 12.92pc when compared with the same month of last year. The cutlery exports during September 2019 were recorded at $6.973 million as against the export of $6.175 million in September 2018. Meanwhile, on a month-on-month basis, cutlery exports in September 2019, however, witnessed a decline of 14.56pc when compared with the export of $8.161 million in August 2019. -Imports from India plunge 39.47pc in 1QFY20 Pakistan’s imports from India dropped by 39.47pc during the first quarter of the current financial year (FY19-20), following the dip in trade relations between the two countries since August this year. Overall imports from India were recorded at $220.839 million during July-September FY20 as against the imports of $364.901 million during the same period of FY19, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). On the other hand, Pakistani exports to India during the period under review were recorded at $9.802 million as against $102.458 million last year, showing decreased of 90.43pc. Based on the trade figures, imports from India witnessed a decline of 71.06pc in September 2019 when compared with the imports of the same month of last year. The imports from India into the country during September 2019 were recorded at $29.453 million as against the imports of $101.803 million in September 2018. -Spanish Envoy Wants to Increase Trade with Pakistan Spanish businessmen are visiting Pakistan despite travel advisory and another delegation from Spain will visit Pakistan during the next week, said Spanish Ambassador Manuel Duran. He added that Pakistan and Spain should exploit their potential to enhance bilateral trade. Addressing an event at Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), he said that Faisalabad is the industrial, commercial and business hub of Pakistan. Being at the forefront of the textile industry, Faislabad is using Spanish machinery in most of its factories. -Pakistan Finishes 3rd at Inaugural OIC Robotics Challenge in Uzbekistan The 1st Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Robotics Challenge was held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan from 27 October to 31 October. The event was arranged by COMSTECH, the Ministerial Standing Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation of the OIC, in collaboration with the OIC General Secretariat, Islamic Development Bank (IDB), and Ministry of Innovative Development of Uzbekistan. The OIC Robotics Challenge took place in the UZEXPOCENTRE exhibition center in Tashkent during INNO week to explore innovative ideas. -Pakistan launches it's largest ever scholarship program Prime Minister, Imran Khan has launched the ‘largest ever needs-based undergraduate scholarship program in the history of Pakistan’ under the Ehsaas program. The vision behind the 200,000 scholarships over the next 4 years is human capital development. 50% of the scholarships are reserved for female students. During the launch ceremony, Imran Khan said that a lack of education and employment opportunities drive youth towards crime. Under the program, 50,000 scholarships will be awarded to deserving students with a special focus on disadvantaged areas of the country. The scholarships awarded by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) will be applicable in both public and participating private sector universities and colleges. -Balochistan Govt Wants to Turn Beaches into Tourist Spots The government of Balochistan is working on a comprehensive policy for developing tourist spots along the coastal belt. Balochistan has a coastal belt stretching over 700 km offering scenic views to the tourists. However, due to lack of infrastructure and facilities, the mineral-rich province has failed to exploit its beaches. In this regard, Chief Minister of Balochistan Jam Kamal presided a meeting of the Balochistan Coastal Development Authority (BCDA) in the provincial capital. Gadani, Pasni, Jiwani, Kund Malir and Haft Talar or Astola Island in the Arabian Sea, are some of the spots that have immense potential if developed properly, BCDA officials apprised Kamal. Jam Kamal said that transforming the beaches into tourist spots will attract more tourists which would boost the local economy, create employment opportunities, and help small businesses. Director General BCDA lauded the governments’ initiative terming it beneficial for both the province and country.
2019.10.29 00:15 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 134.
-Rupee continues to recover, gains Rs4.16 in four months The Pakistani rupee has maintained a gradual uptrend against the US dollar since the beginning of current fiscal year in July and is anticipated to gain more ground in the remaining eight months amid expectations of increase in foreign currency inflows. The rupee gradually strengthened Rs4.16 or 2.60% in the past around four months to Rs155.88 to the US dollar in the inter-bank market on Friday, according to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). “The rupee may recover to 145 to the greenback by June 30, 2020,” Forex Association of Pakistan (FAP) President Malik Bostan projected while talking to The Express Tribune. Further: -In a positive development, Pakistani Rupee hits highest level of four months against US dollar The Pakistani rupee has shown recovery against the US dollar as the US currency reached the lowest level in four months. -ExxonMobil to help build LNG terminal in Pakistan After getting a liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply contract from private-sector consumers, US energy giant ExxonMobil is planning to build the third LNG terminal in Karachi as a joint-venture partner. Some time ago, ExxonMobil, in collaboration with Pakistan’s exploration and production companies, drilled an offshore well to search for hydrocarbon reserves in the Arabian Sea. However, the effort could not prove successful. Now, in a new venture with Energas consortium, the US firm is going to invest in setting up an LNG terminal in Pakistan. -Pakistan's Hindu community celebrates Diwali today in a renovated temple reopened by the Pakistan government after 72 years he country’s Hindu community is celebrating the annual religious festival of Diwali. The religious festivities are expected to take place in Shawala Teja Singh Temple, located in Sialkot, after 72 years. All preparations for the upcoming festival have been completed. The festival of Diwali is being seen as more of a cultural than a religious one as people from other faiths will celebrate alongside members of the Hindu community. The temple, where the festivities will take place, was closed down in 1947. The Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) and certain members of the Hindu community decided to open the temple a few months ago, after which the renewal and renovation work had begun. Now, for the first time, this temple is going to celebrate a religious ceremony. -Tax Returns Filed Per Day in 2019 Have Increased by 127 Percent: FBR Chairman Federal Board of Revenue’s (FBR) Chairman Syed Shabbar Zaidi has announced that on average, tax returns filed per day in 2019 have risen by 127 percent compared to last year. In a Twitter post, Zaidi shared details of the tax returns filed so far. As per the records, the number of tax returns filed in 2019 till October 25 stands at 918,027, as compared to 585,209 tax returns filed in the same period last year. Zaidi said that as of November, the FBR will impose strict measures against unauthorized interactions and harassement between its staff and the business community. The business community is suggested to report to FBR if any person contacts them through any manner without proper authorization. -Pakistan, Nepal agree to enhance trade ties President Dr. Arif Alvi on Saturday held a meeting with the Nepal’s Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli on the sidelines of 18th Non Aligned Movement Summit in Baku, ARY News reported. According to a statement issued by the ministry, both the leaders affirmed to enhance trade ties between the two countries and expressed their desire to further strengthen the bonds of friendship. Matters of mutual interest, bilateral relations, regional peace, grave human rights violations and humanitarian crisis in occupied Kashmir and other issues were came under discussion in the meeting. Speaking on the occasion, President Alvi briefed the Nepalese prime minister on Indian illegal actions in occupied Kashmir. He expressed hope that Nepal will play its role as SAARC chair, for strengthening peace and stability in the region. -CPEC enters into 2nd phase: Poverty, agriculture, B2B initiatives prime focus: Khusro Federal Minister for Planning, Development & Reform Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtyar Wednesday said the CPEC has now entered into its second phase with focus on poverty alleviation, agriculture and B2B industrial cooperation. “The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government's economic reform measures will strengthen the country's economy as the investors' confidence is rebounding due to corrective measures," the minister expressed these views while talking to Australian High Commissioner Dr Geoffrey Shaw who called on him on Wednesday. Secretary Planning Zafar Hasan was also present in the meeting. While discussing bilateral relations and foreign investment in various sectors in Pakistan especially in Gwadar, the minister said that ongoing phase of CPEC will bring about socioeconomic benefits for the welfare of the people. He said that CPEC offers enormous potential to boost national economy and reduce poverty. -Pakistan's Defence Exports have reached USD 212.6 MILLION IN 2018-2019 According to the Pakistan Ministry of Defence Production’s (MoDP) “First Year Performance Report,” the country had registered $212.6 million US in defence exports from August 2018 to August 2019. Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) booked the highest value at $184.38 million US, which was followed by Pakistan Ordnance Factories (POF) at $7.13 million US and Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT) at $1.3 million US. In addition, private sector firms booked $19.36 million US in sales. No additional breakdowns were provided by the MoDP. It is likely that PAC’s exports were fueled by co-production work for FC-1/JF-17 sales to Myanmar and/or Nigeria. Though an agreement was signed with Turkey for the sale of 52 Super Mushshak basic trainers, it is unclear if PAC has started manufacturing these aircraft. -DRAP to launch countrywide drive against substandard, spurious medicines The Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) is launching a countrywide campaign against substandard medicines, the PM’s Special Assistant on Health Dr. Zafar Mirza said while addressing the federal and provincial drug inspectors in Islamabad on Thursday. He said a crackdown is being launched throughout the country to eradicate the menace of unregistered, spurious and sub-standard medicine. In addition to medicine quality, he added, DRAP will also take stern action against violation of fixed prices of medicines. -Foreign exchange: SBP reserves increase $79m to $7.89b The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank increased 1.14% on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday. Earlier, the reserves had spiralled downwards, falling below the $7-billion mark, which raised concern over Pakistan’s ability to meet its financing requirements. However, financial assistance from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia and other friendly nations helped shore up the foreign exchange reserves. On October 18, the foreign currency reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $7,892.7 million, up $79 million compared with $7,813.7 million in the previous week. The report cited no reason for the increase in reserves, which stood below the $8-billion mark. -Ease of business: Pakistan up 28 places on World Bank index Pakistan has jumped up 28 places on the World Bank’s (WB) Ease of Doing Business Index and secured a place among the top 10 countries with the most improved business climate – a development that will greatly improve Islamabad’s image abroad, Pakistan carried out six reforms that helped improving its ranking from 136 to 108, according to the WB’s annual flagship report, ‘Ease of Doing Business 2020’, released on Thursday. It turned out to be the sixth global reformer and first in South Asia that brought ease in doing business in the last one year. The fewer are the regulations the better is the ranking on the index. The key to attain perfection is to cut the bureaucracy hindering business activities in the name of various regulations and procedures. -CM approves Rs 500m for Punjab Housing & Town Planning Agency Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar has given approval of Rs 500 million for Punjab Housing & Town Planning Agency. He gave approval while presiding over a high-level meeting at CM Office here on Monday. During the meeting progress on Naya Pakistan Housing Project for low-income persons was reviewed and detailed briefing was also given to the participants on Naya Pakistan Housing strategy. While addressing the meeting, Usman Buzdar said that obstacles should be removed in order to ensure completion of Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme and financial conditions of common man should be kept in mind while chalking out housing policy of the project. All out attention should be paid while constructing small houses in the province, he added. It has also been decided during the meeting to launch rural housing project in 17 model villages. -KSE 100 gains 204 points amid improved sentiments The benchmark KSE 100 Index depicted remarkable progress as it gained around 204 points and concluded at 33,861-level.It was a busy start to the week at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) with earnings season hitting its peak, while volumes remained at par with previous weeks’ average. Biggest single day investment in treasury bills in the previous week of estimated US $87.5 million, increasing total investment to US$440 million since July 2019 was the major rally point in the market sentiments. The bourse recorded an intraday low of 33,572.36 soon after the commencement of the session. However, after regaining the momentum, the index marked its day’s high at 34,008.35 adding 350.89 points. It settled higher by 204.13 points at 33,861.59. The KMI 30 Index accumulated 386.53 points to settle at 55,155.92, while the KSE All Share Index managed to gain 86.13 points, ending at 24,543.78. -Sindh to reserve 0.5% job quota for transgender persons The Sindh Cabinet on Wednesday agreed to reserve 0.5 per cent quota in government jobs for transgender persons. “I want to bring transgender people into the mainstream,” said Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah during the cabinet meeting. “We want to make them an asset for our society.” CM Murad congratulated the transgender community on behalf of the cabinet and advised them to improve their education. Around 41,000 positions are vacant in different government departments across Sindh out of which 206 will be given to transgender people. A spokesperson from the chief minister’s house stated that out of the 41,000 available jobs 16,000 positions will be filled this fiscal year. Rest of the positions will be filled in the period of next three years. -Malaysia's Mahathir stands by Kashmir comments despite India palm oil boycott Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on Tuesday he would not retract his criticism of New Delhi’s actions in occupied Kashmir despite Indian traders calling for an unprecedented boycott of Malaysian palm oil. The impasse could exacerbate what Mahathir described as a trade war between the world’s second biggest producer and exporter of the commodity and its biggest buyer so far this year. India’s top vegetable oil trade body on Monday asked its members to stop buying Malaysian palm oil after Mahathir said at the United Nations General Assembly last month that India had “invaded and occupied” Kashmir. -“World’s two major companies setting up solar panel plants in Pakistan” Federal Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry announced on Monday that the world’s two major solar panel firms will establish their plants in Pakistan. The minister tweeted saying “good news gets lost in political plays, yet I am very happy that the world’s two major companies are setting up solar panel’s plants in Pakistan.” Chaudhry added that China’s second-largest Lithium battery producer will also set up its workshop in Pakistan. The Lithium battery-powered buses will also be manufactured in Pakistan, the tweet further said. The Minister for Science and Technology was recently on a visit to Beijing where he met various Chinese officials and the country’s business leaders. -Pakistan Navy organizes free medical camp in Balochistan Navy organized a free medical camp in the village Dam of Balochistan in collaboration with Sahil and Ulfat welfare foundations. According to the spokesperson of Pakistan Navy, specialist doctors of surgical, medical, skin, gynecology, child and general medically inspected patients at the camp. Over 700 patients were provided with free medical treatment, medicines and ordinary surgical facilities. -Lahore to get Tram service soon Citizens of Lahore are getting a modern-day tram service soon, based on the famous British-era tram service. In this regard, the Punjab Transport Department has inked an agreement with CRSC International, a Chinese company specializing in rail transportation control systems, and Inkon Group of the Czech Republic. The development of the project is divided into several phases. In the first phase, a 35 km track will be constructed on Canal Road, Lahore. Up to 50 trams will run on this track. Once operational, the trams will be able to carry 35,000 passengers in 1 hour. The trams will be powered through electricity and batteries. A single tram will have a service life of around 40 years. 2 tram depots will be constructed at different locations as well. -10 Pakistani Universities Ranked Among the World’s Best in ‘University Impact Rankings 2019’ Ten Pakistani universities have been ranked among the top universities in the world in the Times Higher Education (THE)’s list. THE is a weekly UK-based magazine that issues its annual list of world’s most influential universities. The list called ‘University Impact Rankings 2019’ has included 10 Pakistani varsities in different categories, including Gender Equality, Good Health and Well-being, Quality Education, Decent Work, Economic Growth, and others. According to the magazine, the rankings assess universities against the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. -PM Imran Khan inaugurates China-Hub Power Generation Plant in Balochistan Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan has said that Pakistan is moving forward through China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects. Addressing inaugural ceremony of China Hub Power Generation Plant in Balochistan, he said this is the first joint project under the CPEC umbrella and he is very happy after inaugurating it. “The government will facilitate joint collaboration between Pakistani and Chinese businesses in various sectors.”, he said. PM Imran Khan said with the help of coal reserves in Thar, Pakistan can generate huge amount of electricity, which can be enough for at least 100 years. -Punjab Forest Department develops ‘record keeping’ mechanism Department of Forest Punjab is managing 1.6 million acres of forest land area – 67 per cent of the entire forest land area in Punjab – under the Geographic Information System (GIS), Pakistan Today learnt reliably on Friday. The program enabled the forests department to ensure sound management and introduce state of the art record-keeping and mapping methods. ‘Development of GIS-Based Forest Management Information System in Punjab’ was approved at PC-1 with a cost of Rs75 million and a gestation period of 36 months (2016-2019) has allowed for transfer of all forest resources and inventories into IT-based inventory systems and achieved extensive field surveys, rapid data collection and its processing for development of the forestry sector on efficient lines. -Hutchison Port Holdings announces $240m investment in Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has welcomed $240 million foreign investment from Hutchison Port Holdings, a Hong Kong-based port operator. A delegation of Hutchison Port Holdings, led by its Group Managing Director Eric Ip, called on Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday. Other delegation members included HPH Middle East & Africa Managing Director Andy Tsoi and Middle East & Africa Business Director Eric Ng. Maritime Affairs Minister Syed Ali Haider Zaidi, Adviser to PM on Commerce Abdul Razzaq Dawood, Special Assistant to PM on Overseas Pakistanis Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari, Ambassador-at-Large for Foreign Investment Ali Jehangir Siddiqui and Board of Investment Chairman Zubair Haider Gilani were also present on the occasion. Group Managing Director Eric Ip apprised the prime minister of Hutchison’s fresh investment into Pakistan approximating $240 million which will enhance the new container terminal capacity at the Karachi Port, and increase Hutchison Ports’ total investment in Pakistan to $1 billion. -Punjab's tax collection jumps 44% Punjab’s tax collection registered a 44% growth to Rs77 billion in first quarter of the ongoing fiscal year compared to the corresponding period of previous year, despite tough conditions of the federal government for the provinces to get a share in the federal divisible pool of resources. Punjab Finance Minister Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht disclosed this at a review meeting of the Finance Department on Monday. The meeting was briefed that despite the financial backlog left by the previous government, the current government gave a surplus budget of Rs233 billion in order to meet financial requirements of the federal government to comply with conditions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan programme. -‘SECP recognised as 7th most effective regulator in world’ The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has been recognised as the “7th most effective regulator” by the World Economic Forum in its ‘Global Competitiveness Report-2019’. “Pakistan was ranked as the 52nd most dynamic economy in the world. The country secured this by improving 15 points from last year, as it stood at 67th in 2018,” said a statement issued by Mishal Pakistan, Country Partner at WEF’s Institute of the Future of Economic Progress System Initiative, on Wednesday. “The progress of Pakistan’s competitiveness was due to the achievements made during the last 12 months.” The most effective improvements were made due to the initiative and strategies adopted by the apex regulator for the corporate sector and the capital markets; supervision and regulation of insurance, non-banking financial companies and private pension schemes. The SECP improved Pakistan’s competitiveness rankings by improving the “number of days to start a business”, where Pakistan was ranked at the 90th position compared with 96th in 2018. -Pakistan China bilateral trade crosses $19 billion, highest ever in history Pakistan Ambassador to China , Naghmana Hashmi has said the bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and China has now touched US $ 19.08 billion and both countries aimed to raise it further. “The bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and China has now touched US$ 19.08. We aim to raise it further,” Ambassador Hashmi said joint ventures in defence production have led to the manufacture of the MBT 2000 Al-Khalid Tank and JF-17 Thunder, a fighter aircraft. “On the diplomatic front, the two countries are committed to protecting and promoting multilateralism and upholding the United Nations (UN)Charter, while our cooperation has extended to science and technology, socioeconomic sectors and nuclear cooperation for peaceful purposes,” she added. -Foreign Company Agrees to Drop $6 Billion Penalty, Re-Invest in Reko Diq: Reports The International Center of Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) had slapped the country with a $6 billion penalty for revoking the contract without prior knowledge back in 2009. Soon after the development, the Prime Minister had empowered his financial team to contact the executives of the Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) to reach an out-of-court settlement and avoid the penalty. Reportedly, after the Pakistan authority’s approach, the company has not only agreed to take back the penalty but has also agreed to invest in the project again. As per media reports, PM Imran Khan contacted the TCC management and discussed the prospects of the matter. He assured the company his full support if they wanted to revise the investment plan for the project. The company will reportedly withdraw its appeal from the ICSID, while Pakistan will compensate for their damages due to the cancelation of the contract. -Current account deficit shrinks massive 64pc The country’s current account deficit (cad) in the first quarter of current fiscal year declined by a huge 64 per cent mainly on the back of a 21pc reduction in the imports bill. The State Bank’s latest data issued on Friday showed the current account deficit for July-September FY20 clocked in at $1.548 billion compared to $4.287bn in the same period last fiscal year; a decline of $2.739bn. The reduced current account deficit is a positive omen for the government, which is struggling with slow economic growth and high inflation. However, despite massive decline in rupee’s value, the country’s exports have failed to register any noticeable increase during the period. -Food imports down 24pc, exports up 14pc in Q1 FY20 Food group imports into the country during the first quarter of the current financial year (July-Sept 2019-20) decreased considerably by 24.7pc, whereas exports increased by 13.98pc compared with the corresponding period of last year. The import of food commodities into the country during the period under review came down from $1.45 billion to $1 billion, whereas the exports increased from $864 million to $984.7 million, according to latest data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). -Chinese Smartphone Company Realme to build mobile phone manufacturing factory in Pakistan Chinese company Realme's Director of Marketing in Pakistan Mr He Shunzi in an interview disclosed that Realme is planning to set up the mobile phone manufacturing factory in Pakistan. He told that company is inspecting locations in Islamabad, Peshawar, and Faisalabad Industrial Estate for suitable land. Pakistani mobile market offers guaranteed capital as Realme ranked top five android brands in Pakistan in less than nine months, capturing 8% of total market share, he added. -Chinese Coal Giant Wants to Convert Thar’s Coal to Diesel China’s Shenhua Ningxia Coal Industry Group will help convert Thar’s coal into oil and the talks between the two parties are underway. The Shenhua Ningxia Coal Industry Group is a subsidiary of China’s biggest coal producer, the Shenhua Group and the company already has the world’s largest plant for converting coal into diesel, with an annual production capacity of 4 million tons in Ningxia in its portfolio. The agreement, if signed, will be a ‘game-changer’ for Pakistan, believes Adviser to Prime Minister on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, who accompanied Imran Khan on his recent visit to China. The Pakistani delegation held talks with the Shenhua Group during the trip: -In a positive development, Pakistan projected among top 20 rising economic growth engines of the World Pakistan projected among 20 top rising economic growth engines of the World that would dominate the global growth in next 5 years. Pakistan has been projected as one of 20 countries that will dominate global growth in five years time in 2024, an assessment made by Bloomberg using data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). -In a positive development, Pakistan textile exports register increase Textile exports from the country increased by 2.95pc during the first quarter of the current fiscal year (July-Sept FY20) compared with the corresponding period of the last fiscal year. The textile exports during the period under review were recorded at $3,371.974 million as against the exports of $3,275.303 million during July-September 2018-19, according to latest data by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). The textile commodities that contributed to the positive growth included raw cotton, exports of which grew by 53.65pc, from $7.047 million to $10.828 million. Similarly, the exports of yarn (other than cotton yarn) increased by 21.95pc, from $7.759 million last year to $9.462 million, while that of knitwear surged by 11.14pc, from $701.393 million to $779.548 million. -Kartarpur Corridor will open to public on November 9: PM Imran Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday announced that Pakistan will inaugurate the Kartarpur Corridor on November 9. The premier’s announcement came via a Facebook post in which he said that construction work on the Pakistani side had entered the final stage. “Pakistan is all set to open its doors for Sikhs from all across the globe,” he wrote. “World’s largest Gurdwara will be visited by Sikhs from across India and other parts of the world,” he said. -'$1.2b penalty in Karkey case likely to be waived' Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader and senior lawyer Babar Awan has said that the $1.2 billion penalty that Pakistan has to pay to Turkey’s Karkey rental power plant is likely to be waived. “International institutions, through high-level backdoor contacts, have agreed to waive off the penalty. This is very good news for Pakistan,” said Awan while addressing the media on Friday. “International institutions have shown their trust in Prime Minister Imran Khan,” he added. -Punjab Govt to Introduce a Unified Tax Collection System Punjab government is contemplating the introduction of a unified tax collection system in the province. The unified system will streamline the tax collection process and facilitate the taxpayers. At the moment, Punjab Revenue Department, Excise and Taxation Department, and local administrations collect taxes in Punjab. On Sunday, Finance Minister of Punjab, Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht, headed a meeting of Punjab Revenue Authority (PRA). Bakht said that a special tax management unit will be set up at the Punjab finance department that will unify tax collection all across the country. -PM To Launch Clean Green Pakistan Index for Multiple Cities Prime Minister’s Adviser on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam, said that Imran Khan will launch the Clean Green Pakistan Index (CGPI) at a grand launching ceremony on October 30. The initiative is aimed at introducing competition among cities on various indicators, including public access to clean drinking water, safe sanitation, effective solid waste management, and tree plantation. The prime minister will announce a six-month competition among 19 cities of Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa provinces, he added. The adviser said that after six months, these cities will be ranked again and those with prominent progress will be rewarded with special federal and provincial government funds and more cities will be joining the competition. -PM Khan Will Lay The Foundation of Baba Guru Nanak University on Oct. 28 Prime Minister Imran Khan is going to lay the foundation stone of Baba Guru Nanak University on October 28. The establishment of this university in Nankana Sahib was announced earlier this year when PM Khan was in the town for a Spring Tree Plantation Campaign. -Sindh govt invites bids for Dhabeji SEZ The Sindh government has launched the well-connected Dhabeji Special Economic Zone in district Thatta near Port Qasim, according to a statement issued on Monday. In this connection, the Sindh Economic Zones Management Company (SEZMC), being the provincial SEZ custodian, has invited proposals for the development and operation of Dhabeji project through an advertisement published in leading national and international newspapers. Dhabeji SEZ was highlighted in the recent meeting of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Joint Working Group on Industrial Cooperation. The senior officials of China’s National Development Reforms Commission (NDRC) appreciated the Sindh government on the progress made so far. The Sindh government launched the project through an international competitive bidding process as a build-up to the upcoming 10th Joint Coordination Committee (JCC) meeting between China and Pakistan, which would be held next month. -Rice exports surge 51pc in first quarter FY20 Rice exports from the country during the first quarter of the financial year 2019-20 grew by 50.76pc as compared to the corresponding period last year. During the July-September period, about 839,356 metric tonnes of rice, worth $470.584 million, were exported as compared the exports of 551.5,86 metric tonnes, valuing $312.147 million, during the same period of FY19. According to data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, the exports of basmati rice increased by 47.29pc, as 212,873 metric tonnes of basmati rice ($194.669 million) were exported during the first quarter of FY20, as compared the 127,669 metric tonnes ($132.166 million) in the same period of last year. Meanwhile, 34,090 metric tonnes of fish and fish preparations worth $79.549 million were also exported in the period under review as compared to the exports of 25,859 metric tonnes valuing $67.294 million during the same period of last year.
2019.10.13 23:22 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 133.
-Iran welcomes mediation as PM Imran arrives in Tehran On a mission to mediate between Iran and Saudi Arabia to lower tensions in the Middle East, Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived in Tehran on Sunday afternoon for talks with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei and President Dr Hassan Rouhani, a move welcomed by Iran. In his meeting with President Rouhani, the premier reiterated that Pakistan attaches high importance to bilateral ties with Iran. This was the second meeting between the two leaders within the span of a month. They held wide-ranging consultations and PM Imran asserted that Islamabad was willing to play its role for strengthening peace and stability in the region. -Imran's China visit sparks outstanding stock market rally Bulls maintained their grip on the Pakistan stock market in the outgoing week as the benchmark KSE-100 index powered past the 34,000-point mark in a phenomenal rally. The index surged 1,442 points or 4.37% in the week and settled at 34,476 points. “From its recent bottom of 28,765 points hit on August 16, 2019, the KSE-100 index has gained 20%,” said Topline Securities in its report. At the start of the week, trading kicked off on a positive note following the release of Asia-Pacific Group’s report on money laundering, which found Pakistan partially compliant with a majority of the issues. -3 army officers found guilty of abuse of authority, involvement in illegal activities Three majors of the Pakistan Army have been found guilty of indiscipline and misconduct charges, including abuse of authority and involvement in illegal activities, Inter-Services Public Relations announced on Friday. "Upon [being] found guilty of the charges levelled against them, all three [have been] dismissed from service while two [have] also [been] awarded rigorous imprisonment for two years each," the military's media wing stated. "Charges included misuse of authority and involvement in illegal activities unbecoming of an officer," the ISPR said. -Current account deficit shrinks 35% to $5.72 bn in July-September The steps taken by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government to recover ailing economy have started yielding results, as the current account deficit (CAD) has witness a remarkable decrease in first three months (July-September) of the current fiscal year. According to figures released on Friday, the CAD was recorded at $5.72 billion as compared to $8.79 billion in the corresponding period of the last year. Furthermore the exports also saw an increase of nearly 3pc and were recorded at $5.52 billion in the first three months of the ongoing fiscal year. The imports were also shrunk by 21 per cent from July to September and stood at $3.78 billion in the month of September. -FBR to install e-devices at big shops, malls, restaurants from Dec 1 The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has made mandatory for all mega chain stores, shopping malls, restaurants, cafes, coffee shops, eateries, snack bars and hotels to install Electronic Device System with effect from December 1, 2019. The computerised software of the FBR will be connected with cash machines and the customers will be able to check whether its paid tax amount was deposited in FBR or not. The point of sale (POS) will be connected with the FBR through this new software Electronic Device System (EDS). “Yes, we have issued rules to amend sales tax rules 2006 aimed at installing Electronic Device System at 20,000 chain stores, shopping malls and others at point of sale to bring them into tax net till June 30, 2020. This new system will become applicable with effect from December 1, 2019. Then we will go to bring hospitals and laboratories into this system,” the FBR’s Member Policy and Spokesman Dr Hamid Ateeq Sarwar confirmed to The News here on Thursday. -Pakistan Railways overcomes ML-1 snags, project back on track The hurdles in the path of Pakistan Railway’s long-awaited flagship project, Main Line-1, have been apparently been overcome, renewing hopes of revamping the country’s dilapidated train infrastructure of the colonial era. ML-1, which is expected to be executed at a cost of $8.2 billion in five years, has been cleared by the Ministry of Planning and Development, after Railways Minister Shiekh Rashid expressed his reservations over the slow progress of this strategically important project under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). On his recent visit to China, the railways minister announced in Beijing that the ML-1 project had been finalised. Railways Chief Executive Officer Aijaz Ahmad Buriro said he was hopeful that the project would start materialising soon. -Altaf Hussain charged under terrorism act in UK; granted conditional bail Altaf Hussain, the self-exiled founder of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), was charged on Thursday with a terrorism offence by London’s Metropolitan Police over a speech in which he had allegedly incited his followers to violence. Later in the day, a court released him on bail granted under strict conditions. The Scotland Yard confirmed in a statement that detectives from the Counter Terrorism Command have charged a 66-year-old man with a terrorism offence in connection with a speech made in August 2016. “Altaf Hussain (17.09.1953), of Abbey View, Mill Hill, NW7, was charged under section 1(2) of the Terrorism Act (TACT) 2006 with encouraging terrorism, namely: “On 22 August 2016 published a speech to crowds gathered in Karachi, Pakistan which were likely to be understood by some or all of the members of the public to whom they were published as a direct or indirect encouragement to them to the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism and at the time he published them, intended them to be so encouraged, or was reckless as to whether they would be so encouraged,” read the statement. -SECP’s Approach to Stop Money Laundering Starts Bearing Fruit The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP)’s risk-based approach for effective implementation of Anti Money Laundering (AML)/Combating The Financing of Terrorism (CFT) regulatory framework has resulted in significant improvement in the filing of Suspicious Transactions Reports (STR) with the Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU). To align itself with the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) standards (40 recommendations), SECP has developed a single set of regulations namely SECP AML/CFT Regulations in June 2018. They’ve also developed a comprehensive guideline to help regulated persons in creating an effective AML/CFT risk assessment and compliance framework. Since the promulgation of consolidated AML/CFT regulations, financial institutions have generated a total of 219 STRs, as compared to only 13 in the last eight years. Moreover, SECP conducted 167 inspections focusing on AML/CFT compliance in the cases of 72 securities brokers, 27 NBFCs, 13 insurance companies, and 55 high-risk NPOs. Significant penalties have been imposed for non-compliance with said regulations. SECP says that financial institutions have undertaken remedial measures to ensure effective compliance with the regulations. Automated screening software has been deployed by many institutions to screen the proscribed persons. -FBR’s Updated Tax Asaan App Now Allows Registration & Non-Salaried Returns The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has launched an updated version of its ‘Tax Asaan’ app for filing salaried and non-salaried tax returns. It also allows new taxpayers to register online. This came to light on Thursday when the Member Policy, Dr. Hamid Ateeq Sarwar, gave a detailed presentation to the Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue. Dr. Hamid informed the Senate that App was launched mid-September, but earlier, it was earlier limited to salaried class. The new version will now cover all incomes and assets of salaried and non-salaried individuals. He later spoke to media and revealed that the revenue watchdog has received over 50,000 salary returns digitally and thousands of downloads of the app within the first 24 hours of launch. -Japan assists in establishment of container scanners The Government of Japan has extended assistance to Pakistan Customs and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for establishment of three new state of the art Non-Intrusive Inspection (NII) Containers Scanning Terminals at East and West Warf in Karachi Port and Port Bin Qasim. Under the Japanese grant assistance, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) implemented “The Project for Security Improvement in Karachi Port and Port Bin Oasim” amount of JPY 1.877 billion (approximately Rs2.78 billion), Japan Embassy here announced. -Govt Planning to Develop Bundal Island Karachi & New Blue Area Islamabad The federal government is considering to develop Bundal Island Karachi and New Blue Area Islamabad to address the growing housing need in the country. Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired a meeting on Monday before leaving for a three-day official visit to China. During the meeting, the proposals for the development of the said projects were discussed in detail. -Nestle Inaugurates A New $22 Million Juice Production Plant in Punjab Governor Punjab Chaudhry Mohammad Sarwar has inaugurated a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Nestlé Pakistan’s Sheikhupura factory. The company invested $22 million in the Nestlé Fruita Vitals Plant with a production capacity of 24,000 units per hour. While speaking at the occasion, Chaudhry Mohammad Sarwar said that the government’s aim is to create conditions in which foreign companies are attracted towards making new investments. At present, the government is making concerted efforts to revive the nation’s economy. He was really pleased to see that Nestlé, one of the world’s leading food and beverage companies, is making such good progress in Pakistan. Their investment demonstrates and speaks volumes about Nestlé’s trust in the future of Pakistan, he added. -Saudi Arabia agrees to finance Pakistan's Jagran Hydropower Project Pakistan has succeeded in convincing Saudi Arabia to provide a loan of 131.125 million Saudi riyal for the construction of Jagran-IV Hydropower Project. In this regard, the Economic Affairs Division (EAD) has written a letter to the Federal Board of Revenue to exempt imports for this project from customs duty. The letter, signed by EAD Secretary Shaukat Ali, stated that a draft of the loan agreement had been prepared between Pakistan and Saudi Development Fund for the construction of Jagran-IV Hydropower Project and it would be signed by the relevant authorities of the two countries. -ADB approves $2.7b lending to Pakistan in 2019 The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a $2.7 billion lending programme for Pakistan for the calendar year, increasing the average borrowing from $1.4 billion per year to $2.4 billion a year. In a statement on Twitter, the ADB said it will provide $2.7 billion in approved financing and Country Operations Business Plan (COBP) 2020-2022 to Pakistan. The regional bank further added that it will leverage lending through the mobilisation of co-financing and funding from other sources including regional concessional resources. “The new COBP will support Pakistan’s development goals and complement efforts by other development partners.” -Azerbaijan plans to start direct flights to Pakistan In light of exponential growth in the number of tourists visiting Azerbaijan from Pakistan, the central Asian country is making efforts to resume direct flights between the two countries. Following a hike in fuel prices in February 2006, Azerbaijan Airlines had halted flights to Karachi along with many other destinations. Later, in 2017, nearly 9,000 people travelled to Azerbaijan. “Some 8,990 people travelled to the eastern country and the number jumped to 41,268 [in 2018], up around 4.6 times,” Azerbaijan Tourism Board CEO Florian Sengstschmid told The Express Tribune on the sidelines of Pakistan Travel Mart held at the Karachi Expo Centre. -Hyundai Nishat Motor to start production in Jan 2020 At a time when Pakistan’s auto sector is going through turmoil and existing players are slashing operational days, Hyundai Nishat Motor (Private) Limited has launched a new car along with a digital store. Ioniq Hybrid, which has a 1.6-litre GDI engine and priced at Rs6.399 million, was unveiled at the digital store on Tuesday. In the store, customers can choose different specifications of the car through a digitised system. “We are starting local production in January 2020,” said Hyundai Nishat Motor Chief Operating Officer Tatsuya Sato while talking to The Express Tribune. He announced that Hyundai Nishat Motor was setting up a new manufacturing facility covering an area of 67 acres in Faisalabad with an annual production capacity of up to 15,000 units. The H-Light trucks will be built with 20% local parts. -Chinese vow to make Gwadar more valuable than Karachi The Chinese operators of Gwadar Port and its free zone have vowed to make the coastal city the single largest contributor to Pakistan’s national economic output in seven years, saying 47,000 jobs will be created for locals with new investments worth billions of dollars. China Overseas Ports Holding Company Gwadar (COPHC) Chairman Zhang Baozhong on Tuesday shared his plans after the government finally stamped 23-year income tax holiday and exemptions of sales tax and customs duties for the Gwadar Port and businesses to be set up at Gwadar Free Zone. “It [issuing of ordinance] is a turning point for Pakistan’s economy and now billions of dollars will be invested in Gwadar,” said the chairman while talking to the media persons. -Govt amends tax laws to promote trade activities at Gwadar port In a bid to promote trade activities at Gwadar port, the government, through a presidential ordinance, has granted tax benefits to Chinese and other foreign firms by introducing certain amendments in the tax laws, Pakistan Today has learnt. Prior to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s scheduled visit to China, the federal government has granted further tax exemptions which in result will promote trade and business activities at Gwadar port. The introduction of the presidential ordinance titled ‘Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019’ is expected to attract Chinese and other foreign investors to the Gwadar port. The Ministry of law and Justice on Monday published Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019, for general information, which was promulgated on Sunday by the President Dr Arif Alvi. According to an available copy of the presidential ordinance, “The Senate and National Assembly are not in session and the President of Pakistan is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary to take immediate action.” -Nearly 48% of Pakistan’s electricity came from non-carbon-based sources in August 2019 It appears to be a contradiction, but it is true nonetheless: in August 2019, nearly half of Pakistan’s electricity came from sources that do not produce greenhouse gases, yet the country’s energy mix is not necessarily getting any cleaner. According to data released by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA), the proportion of electricity that Pakistan derives from non-carbon-based energy sources – defined as hydroelectricity, nuclear, solar, and wind power – hit 47.7% of the total electricity generated in the country, likely an underestimate as the vast majority of solar electricity production in Pakistan is not connected to the grid and thus not measured by NEPRA. This number, of course, is inflated by the fact that the summer months typically tend to have much higher generation of hydroelectricity as the glaciers that feed the Indus River and its tributaries melt and make more water available in the dams. And this year, hydroelectric power generation increased by even more than usual. “The recent torrential downpours have been a significant contributor to higher hydroelectric power generation in recent months, as August 2019 marked the fourth consecutive month of hydroelectric domination in the energy mix,” wrote Ali H. Zaidi, a research analyst at JS Global Capital, an investment bank, in a note sent to clients on September 27, 2019. -Govt mulls manufacturing of mobile phone devices in Pakistan In a positive development, the government has decided to facilitate the assembly and manufacturing of cellphones in the country. According to the Engineering Development Board (EDB) officials, a draft Mobile Device Manufacturing Policy is being finalised to develop and promote mobile devices manufacturing in Pakistan is being finalised as part of the government’s Electronic Products Manufacturing Initiative (Make in Pakistan). The locally-assembled or manufactured mobile phones would replace the costly imported sets, as tariff structures for local assembling and manufacturing would be lowered, they said, adding that the manufacturing of smartphones will not only lower the import bill but will also create employment opportunities in the country. As per the officials, consultations were held with the local representatives of multinational cellular phone set companies and their market players, including dealers, to formulate the draft policy. -Azerbaijan shows interest in investing into Pakistan’s energy sector Azerbaijan on Tuesday showed interest to sign a long-term LNG supply agreement with Pakistan to serve the market that sees double digit growth annually in the fuel import. Businessmen of Azerbaijan expressed keen interest in oil and gas exploration activities as well as opportunities in the LNG infrastructure in Pakistan and offered LNG supplies on a long-term basis. A delegation of businessmen, led by Ambassador of Azerbaijan Ali Alizada, met with Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan. “They expressed particular interest in oil and gas exploration activities in Pakistan along with offering LNG (liquefied natural gas) supplies on a long-term basis and opportunities in the LNG infrastructure of the country,” an official statement said. -Tough economic reforms bearing fruits: Dr Hafeez Shaikh Owing to the tough economic reforms introduced by the government, twin deficits including current account and fiscal deficits reduced significantly during the first quarter of the financial year 2019-20. This was stated by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh during a press conference on Saturday. Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Shabbar Zadi was also present on the occasion. The adviser said that the economic reforms have gradually started showing positive results and that all macro-economic indicators showed resilience during the first quarter of current financial year. Owing to these reforms, the current account deficit shrank by 35pc, as it came down from $9 billion to $5.7 billion in 1QFY20, he added. “The government did not borrow any money from the State Bank of Pakistan nor released any supplementary grant in order to ensure strict adherence of fiscal discipline.” He said the non-revenue income was recorded at Rs406 billion, a growth of 40pc compared with the same period of last year. “Non-revenue income was expected to reach Rs1,600 billion as against the set target of Rs1,200 billion.” The net portfolio investment increased by $340 million which also helped restore the confidence of foreign investors, he said, adding that exports that were stagnant from the last five years, had also witnessed growth. -‘Dubai Land Department to provide details of Pakistani property owners’ Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Syed Shabbar Zaidi said on Friday that the tax authority has held a very productive meeting over October 9 and 10 with UAE officials on the exchange of information regarding property owners. UAE has agreed to share details of the properties owned by 500 non-Iqama holder Pakistani nationals that will provide valuable information to the tax machinery as it remains unable to effectively utilise the previous offshore information. Both the countries also agreed to renegotiate the Pak-UAE avoidance of double taxation treaty that would also help remove irritants in cooperation in areas of taxation. -Govt urged to realise country’s tourism potential Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) President Engr Daroo Khan Achakzai said on Saturday that Pakistan could cope with the ongoing economic crisis by focusing on tourism, which has a huge potential and is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the world. He expressed these views while congratulating Discover Pakistan CEO Dr Kaiser Rafique for launching the first-ever tourism channel in Pakistan during a meeting in which United Business Group (UBG) Chairman Iftikhar Ali Malik was also present, according to a statement issued by the chamber. Paying rich tributes to those who were working for the promotion of the tourism sector, the FPCCI president said that a little help from different government departments could do miracles for the revival of tourism in Pakistan. “The tourism industry of Pakistan has the potential to turn the country into a hub of economic activity as the total contribution of the industry in the global economy is more than $7.58 trillion,” he added. -SBP reserves increase $16m to stand at $7.75bn The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank inched up by 0.21pc on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday. On October 4, the foreign currency reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $7,757.6 million, up $16 million compared with $7,741.6 million in the previous week. The report cited no reason for the increase, which had fallen below the $8 billion mark. The overall liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $14,992.9 million. Net reserves held by banks amounted to $7,235.3 million. -AEDB approves renewable energy policy draft The Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has unanimously approved the draft Alternative Renewable Energy (ARE) Policy 2019. The 46th board meeting of the AEDB was held under the chairmanship of Energy (Power Division) Minister Omar Ayub Khan on Thursday. Power Division Secretary Irfan Ali and all the provincial energy secretaries were present on the occasion. The AEDB Board deliberated upon the draft ARE Policy 2019, which was prepared by the board in consultation with the public and private sector stakeholders, including provincial government agencies. The representatives of provincial governments and other board members provided their inputs on the ARE Policy 2019 draft. A consensus was developed on several inputs and suggestions given by the provincial representatives aimed towards improving the policy framework. -Germany to grant €23.4m for social sector reforms in Pakistan Germany will provide a technical grant of 23.4 million euros (Rs3.9 billion) to Pakistan in order to help the latter implement social sector reforms. In this regard, a Technical Cooperation Agreement was signed on Thursday between Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and Ambassador of Germany to Pakistan Bernhard Stephan Schlagheck under the Pakistan-Germany Development Programme. Economic Affairs Minister Hammad Azhar was also present on the occasion. As per a statement issued by the division, the technical assistance would be extended to projects related to social protection, technical and vocational education, local governance and labour standards in Pakistan’s textile industry. “These schemes are in line with the priority areas of the government and are geared towards impacting the lives of the common people,” it added. -England’s Royal Couple to Visit Pakistan on 14th October The royal couple, Prince William and Kate Middleton, are scheduled to visit Pakistan this November. The two are expected to land on 14th October and they will meet Prime Minister Imran Khan and President Dr. Arif Alvi on 15th October. The couple is expected to return on 18th October after visiting Lahore and Chitral on 16th and 17th October respectively. Reportedly, PM Imran had invited the couple to visit the northern areas in Pakistan which was heartily accepted. The visit is of great significance for Pakistan as the incumbent government is making efforts to promote tourism in the country. A successful visit by the royal couple could set things in motion for Pakistan, which is trying hard to convince foreigners to discover its beauty. England Cricket Board Chief Executive, Tom Harrison, who recently visited Pakistan to assess the security measures in the country is hopeful for England’s visit to the country in 2022. The royal trip might improve the chances that happening as well. -Remittance Inflows Show a Minor Improvement in September 2019 Remittances sent by overseas Pakistanis have registered a growth of 3.4 percent to Rs. 1.74 billion in September as compared to August. The remittance inflows are 17.6% higher than in September 2018. The country-wise details for the month of September 2019 show that inflows from Saudi Arabia, UAE, USA, UK, GCC countries (including Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Oman) and EU countries amounted to US$ 420.88 million, US$ 363.34 million, US$ 281.91 million, US$ 264.89 million, US$ 162.77 million and US$ 53.20 million respectively. -Pakistan Post Announces Debit Cards for Pensioners Federal Minister for Postal Services and Communication Murad Saeed has announced that Pakistan Post will distribute debit cards among its pensioners by the end of this year. The minister said that all pensioners of the national postal will get the facility by December 25. Murad announced this today while addressing a ceremony celebrating the 145th Wold Post Day at Postal Staff College. He mentioned that the debit card facility will save elderly retired officials from standing in long queues. Besides, it will also make the encashment process easy for them. “This service will help boost the revenue for the post besides pointing out the ‘Ghost Pensioners’ of the department,” he added. The minister also announced 35,000 internship opportunities for youth where they can earn an extra amount by registering themselves with Pakistan Post for ‘Pick and Deliver’ services. -Murad Saeed Announces Internship Program for 35,000 Youngsters On the directions of Prime Minister, Imran Khan, Pakistan Post has started its internship program for youth. In a video message, the Federal Minister for Postal Services, Murad Saeed has said that the first session will begin from 4th November and more than 35,000 youngsters will benefit from the program. The program will initiate from 1200 post offices across the country where the young people will learn different skills that can help them start their own businesses or be a part of the Prime Minister’s Kamyab Jawan scheme. -Govt to Develop Dharabi Lake as a Tourist Spot Sardar Usman Buzdar, Punjab’s Chief Minister, made a surprise inspection of Dharabi Lake in District Chakwal whilst journeying from Islamabad to Lahore on a helicopter. He scrutinized the actions being done to promote tourism in the area. The CM, while remarking on the occasion, said that the lake will be established as a tourist-spot adding that a rest-house will be built along with link roads. He further stated that the hatchery sector will be strengthened alongside the promotion of water sports activities in this lake. The Chief Minister hoped that this would enhance tourism along with financial opportunities. The rise in tourism-related activities will expand economic opportunities and this would lead to the development of the area the improvement of road networks, he added. -1,392 new companies registered with SECP in September 2019, 96% of whom Used SECP’s eService to Get Registered The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has registered 1,392 new companies in September 2019, raising the total number of incorporated companies to 105,407. During September 2019, 96% of the companies were registered online through SECP’s eService and 50% of the companies were incorporated on the same day. It is to be noted that 85 of foreign applicants completed the registration from overseas using the eService. The digital solutions deployed by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has made company registration and post-incorporation compliance simpler, faster and cost-effective. September’s incorporation comprises of 69% private limited and 27% single-member companies. The remaining 4% companies include public unlisted companies, trade organizations, foreign companies, Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) and not for profit associations.
2019.10.08 11:57 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 132.
And we back! Took a break to allow the Kashmir issue higher priority. -Japan to import skilled manpower from Pakistan Japan has agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Pakistan for import of thousands of skilled labour to be inducted in multiple sectors. While talking to APP, Minister and Deputy Head of Mission at Embassy of Japan in Pakistan Yusuke Shindo said the MoU could be signed between the two countries next month. Shindo said that Japan has decided to open the labor market in 14 different sectors, including construction, nursing care, agriculture, manufacturing and light engineering and some other sectors. -UAE to invest $5bn in Pakistan’s oil sector: report The United Arab Emirates (UAE) plans to invest $5 billion in an oil refinery project in Pakistan by the end of 2019, said UAE Ambassador to Pakistan Hamad Obaid Ibrahim Salem Al-Zaabi. “We are going to launch very soon one of the biggest investments in a refinery project in Hub, Balochistan. It is going to be a $5 billion investment agreement between Mubadala Petroleum Company of Abu Dhabi, Pak Arab Refinery Limited (PARCO) and OMV (OMV Pakistan Exploration Gesellschaft),” UAE’s top diplomat was quoted as saying by Arab News. The plan is to set up a deep-conversion, state-of-the-art refinery that would have an output of 250,000-300,000 barrels per day. Al-Zaabi said the project was the result of extensive discussions between Mubadala Petroleum and Pakistan’s petroleum ministry along with PARCO and OMV. -PM Imran leaves for three-day China visit Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived at China to discuss regional and bilateral issues with its strategic partner. Premier Imran will hold separate meetings with President Xi Jinping and his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang. He will also discuss expansion of projects under the multibillion-dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) framework. -Pakistan to avoid FATF blacklist with support of friends Three friendly countries have assured Pakistan of full support at the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meetings scheduled to take place from October 13 in Paris. Their backing is expected to thwart India’s nefarious designs of trying to get Pakistan’s name placed on the black list. “If three member states announce their support for Pakistan, its name cannot be included in the FATF black list,” a senior officer of the finance ministry told The Express Tribune on Monday. Sources said Pakistan lobbied three friendly states ahead of the FATF meetings and Malaysia, China and Turkey announced their support for Pakistan. -KSE-100 jumps 962 points as confidence rises Stocks performed remarkably in the outgoing week as developments on economic and political fronts contributed to the euphoric mood. The benchmark KSE-100 index jumped 962 points or 3% to settle at 33,033 points – finishing all five sessions in the green. The buoyancy was in stark contrast to the trend seen in the preceding week and was largely led by improved investor confidence. News regarding the increase in tax collection in 1QFY20 sparked buying interest. Moreover, the anticipation of an increase in cement prices in the northern region also acted as a catalyst for the cement sector and helped the index march upwards. -KSE-100 winning streak continues for 7th straight session Bulls dominated the stock market on Monday as the benchmark index rallied, gaining more than 600 points and finishing its seventh successive session in the green. The euphoria emerged in the wake of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China as investors were hopeful of positive developments for Pakistan during the trip. After a brief dip in early hours, the KSE-100 index surged over 800 points during intra-day trading. The jump came despite the upcoming Financial Action Task Force (FATF) plenary meeting, which would give its decision on Pakistan’s status in the grey list. -Pakistan Regains Status as Favored Tourist Destination “Pakistan opening its doors to the world is the manifestation of the new confidence that the security situation has significantly changed and Pakistan is now quite secure,” Prime Minister Imran Khan said in an address at the inaugural ceremony. After implementation of the policy, the number of tourists to Pakistan has increased significantly. “Pakistan’s e-visa policy is open for the citizens of 175 countries,” Federal Minister Sheheryar Khan Afridi, who held the interior portfolio when the policy was introduced, and today oversees the Narcotics Ministry, told The Media Line. “Tourists seeking to obtain visas will be able to get it at their homes without visiting a Pakistani embassy or consulate.” Afridi added that the system also facilitates a “visa on arrival” program for other nationals arriving as tourists. “Foreign nationals of Indian origin are also allowed to avail themselves of the visa-on-arrival for religious tourism,” he noted. “We removed cumbersome barriers of visa process so tourists across the globe can easily witness Pakistan’s stunning natural beauty,” Afridi continued. “To attract more tourists, the government also abolished the ‘No Objection Certificate,’ which had been required for foreigners to move around freely and enjoy every corner of Pakistan.” -PIA to Resume Flights Operations for Malaysia Later This Month Pakistan International Airlines has decided to resume its direct flight operations between Islamabad and Kuala Lumpur from October 14th. The decision to restart the flights was made after Federal Ombudsman’s intervention into the matter. According to a spokesperson of the Federal Ombudsman, a large number of complaints were filed to the Ombudsperson’s office by the overseas Pakistanis, who were seeking the restoration of the PIA flights. “The PIA is going to operate two direct flights weekly between Islamabad and Kuala Lumpur to facilitate the tourists intending to visit Malaysia and Pakistan. PIA is also looking to restart flights on profitable routes as well,” said an official. He said that the national flag-carrier intended to add new profitable destinations in its operations following the addition of new airplanes in the fleet. To a question he said that PIA is also planning to start direct flights for New York, adding “the plan is under consideration, but the launch of direct flight operation has not yet been finalized.” -Gwadar Port is Now Officially Open for Transit Trade Gwadar Port is now open for transit trade and the first ship is due to arrive next Tuesday, says the Ministry of Maritime Affairs. The sub-committee of the senate standing committee on Maritime Affairs, in its meeting on Tuesday, reviewed various issues of Gwadar Port and its investors. Talking about transit trade and transshipment, the committee discussed that the Afghan Trade Transit Module requires some changes that have been applied and after initial testing, seems ready for application. Gwadar’s main competitors will be Singapore and Dubai ports since incentives such as no cargo demurrage charges and a three-month storage facility will divert business to Gwadar. Concerning storage facilities for fish processing within or outside the port, the committee was assured that Chinese companies will not be charged extra taxes. Convened by Senator Kauda Babar, the meeting was attended by Senator Moula Bux Chandio, Senator Muhammad Akram and senior officers from the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications, Gwadar Port Authority, FBR and PTCL, among others. -Egyptian Companies Want to Invest $1 Billion in Pakistan’s Energy and Housing Sectors Prime Minister Imran Khan has welcomed the interest shown by Egyptian companies to invest $1 billion in Pakistan. The government will fully facilitate Egyptian investors and entrepreneurs so that they can carry out trade activities in the country. Meeting a delegation of Egyptian investors, the prime minister said that there is a huge potential to translate the existing Pakistan-Egypt relations into strong economic ties. He called for the promotion of bilateral cooperation between Pakistan and Egypt at all levels to tackle the common challenges faced at international level, specially, the negative propaganda about Islam so that the two countries could complement each other’s efforts in this respect. -New “Mera Bacha Alert” App Will Tackle Child Abuse Cases To effectively tackle incidents like cases of child abduction and missing children in the country, Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed relevant authorities to launch a new application called “Mera Bacha Alert”. The application will be created in two weeks and will be connected with Pakistan Citizen Portal so that the progress in any case, including the recovery of the child, can be monitored, a press release issued by the PM Office Media Wing said. -Pakistan’s First Export and Import Bank Could Launch Next Year The Ministry of Finance, in collaboration with the Ministry of Commerce and the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), is working to establish Export and Import (Exim) Bank in the country, which may start its operations in 2020, reported Express Tribune. According to the report, the bank will assist the export and import of unconventional goods to many countries of the world with which Pakistan does not have regular trade relations. For the purpose, the Ministry of Finance has constituted a high-level committee, which is currently drawing up a legal and regulatory model and the State Bank will be the regulator. -Nine Dutch Companies Want to Invest in Pakistan’s Poultry and Livestock The Dutch Ambassador to Pakistan, Wouter Plomp, says that nine Dutch companies are interested in investing in Pakistan’s poultry and livestock sector. He said this in a meeting with Federal Minister for National Food Security & Research, Mehboob Sultan. They discussed agricultural cooperation between the two countries during the meeting. According to the ambassador, out of these nine companies, two deal with pharmaceuticals (poultry & livestock vaccine). ”We are looking forward to materializing those objectives of investment in the agro sector here in Pakistan,” he added. -FBR Has Achieved 90% of its Tax Collection Target: Chairman The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has collected over Rs. 960 billion during the first quarter (July-September) of 2019-20, which is 90% of the target for the quarter said Syed Shabbar Zaidi, Chairman FBR on Monday. FBR’s collection increased by 14.83% as compared to Rs. 836 billion in the same period of 2018-19. The revenue collection during September 2019 stood at Rs. 380 billion compared to Rs. 323 billion in September 2018, showing a growth of 17.64 percent. -Food Imports Fall by 28.81% in July-August FY19-20 During the first two months of the current fiscal year (Jul-Aug FY 19-20), food group imports decreased by 28.81% to $697.340 million as compared to $952.717 million in the corresponding period last year. According to the data released by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, during the two months, the import of milk, cream, and milk food for infants reduced by 40.89% as 7,981 metric tons worth $21.014 million was imported as compared with the imports of 13,300 metric tons valuing $35,551 million. Meanwhile, the tea import fell 35.38% as about 27,403 metric tons worth $66.342 million was imported in compared with the imports of 37,431 metric tons worth $100.954 million. The import of spices also came down by 6.23% as about 22,396 metric tons of spices worth $27.172 million were imported as compared to the imports of 27,608 metric tons worth $28.976 million in the same period of last year. -Pakistan’s Biggest Expo Center Will be Established in Faisalabad Pakistan’s largest expo center will be built in Faisalabad in a joint venture of Government of Punjab and Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce Industries. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Punjab Minister for Industries, Commerce and Trade Mian Aslam Iqbal and President FCCI Syed Zia Alamdar Hussain during a meeting at the FCCI Conference room. The minister congratulated FCCI’s management and said that Punjab government will provide 70 acres of land at M-III Industrial Estate Sahianwala for the establishment of the biggest expo center of Pakistan. This will help attract foreign investment in textile and other industrial sectors and promote exports. -Pakistan Listed Among World’s Top 20 Reformers for Ease of Doing Business: WB The World Bank has ranked Pakistan among the top 20 reformers in the world on the Ease of Doing Business. With continuous efforts in this direction, the country has significantly improved the business environment in the country, which is why it has been named among the top performers in the world. A recent report by the World Bank has mentioned a series of initiatives taken by the country towards facilitating the business community. It recognizes that Pakistan has improved in six areas including online tax payment system, availability of electricity, easy registration of property and issuance of construction permits, and tariff changes. -Footwear Exports Increase 15.75% in First Two Months of FY19 The footwear exports from Pakistan saw an increase of 15.75% during the first two months of the current financial year (2019-20) as compared to the corresponding period of last year. Pakistan exported footwear worth $25.793 million during July-August (2019-20) against the exports of $22.283 million during July-August (2018-19), showing a growth of 15.75%, according to the latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). -Additional Rs192 billion recovered from power theft: Omar Ayub The National Assembly was informed on Friday that an additional amount of Rs192 billion has been recovered as a result of the government’s successful campaign against power theft. Federal Minister for Power Omar Ayub Khan told the house during question hour that no load-shedding is being carried out on 80 percent feeders across the country, Radio Pakistan reported. The minister said that the addition of 3,364 megawatts of power has been made in the national grid during the tenure of the present government. -Trade deficit falls sharply by 38pc in July-August The country’s trade deficit shrank by nearly 38 per cent in the first two months of current fiscal year, driven largely by a decline in imports of non-essential luxury items. The constant decline in trade deficit shows the government’s battle against bloated trade deficit is finally bearing fruit as imports have plummeted despite paltry growth in exports proceeds. Provisional trade figures available with Dawn showed the trade deficit dipped to $3.973 billion in July-August from $6.37bn over the corresponding months last year, reflecting a decline of 37.62pc. On a monthly basis, the trade deficit decelerated by a hefty margin of 42.25pc to $1.848bn in August as against $3.20bn over the corresponding month last year. The government has set a target to bring down annual trade gap to $27.476bn by June 2020. -Russian bank expresses interest in making heavy investment in Pakistan Russian ExpoBank Director Igor Vladimirovich Kim on Thursday called on Prime Minister Imran Khan and expressed his interest in making heavy investment in Pakistan, ARY News reported. According to the details, matters of mutual interest, economic reforms, trade policies, special economic zones and other issues were discussed in the meeting. On the occasion, PM Imran welcomed ExpoBank’s decision of making heavy investment in the country and apprised the director about business friendly environment, ease of doing business, improved security situation and vast business opportunities in Pakistan. -SECP registered 1,187 companies in August The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) had registered 1,187 new companies in August 2019, out of which 94pc companies were registered online through eServices, while 52pc companies were registered within the same day. The August registrations have raised the number of total companies to 104,030, a statement issued by SECP on Thursday read. According to the commission, the increasing trend in the registration of new companies is due to simplified and hassle-free procedures for company incorporation. Out of the total number of companies registered in August, 71pc were registered as private limited companies, 26pc as single-member companies and 3pc as public unlisted companies, not for profit associations, trade organisations, foreign companies and limited liability partnership (LLP). -Govt to Develop a Mobile Phone Plant in Haripur In collaboration with the private sector, the government has decided to develop a mobile phone manufacturing plant in Haripur. The idea to privatize the Telephone Industry of Pakistan (TIP) has been dropped. Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication (MoITT), Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui addressed a press conference in which he revealed that the plan to privatize TIP has been dropped. The government is currently in talks with various Chinese companies to develop a mobile handset manufacturing plant. In 2018-19, the IT & IT-enabled Services (ITeS) export remittances have increased to $900 million in comparison to $800 million in 2017-18. The real figure for IT & ITeS exports is $4.1 billion. As an online payment system is not available in Pakistan, the IT industry has not been able to realize its full capability. -Pakistani & Chinese Researchers Announce A Breakthrough in Hybrid Basmati Rice Researchers from Pakistan and China are nearing a breakthrough in the development of a hybrid version of Basmati rice that will have an average per acre yield of 80 maunds (40 kilograms) and average grain length of 8 mm or above. Longping High-Tech Industries from China and Pakistan’s Guard Agriculture Research and Services Private Ltd (Guard Agri) have been collaborating to produce a high-yield hybrid variety of rice in the past few years. -Pakistan successfully tests Ghaznavi missile Pakistan has successfully carried out night training launch of surface-to-surface ballistic missile Ghaznavi, said Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor on Thursday. “The missile is capable of delivering multiple types of warheads at a distance of up to 290 kilometres,” said a tweet by the ISPR DG. Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Zubair Mehmood Hayat and services chiefs have congratulated the team for carrying out the successful launch at night time. -Pakistan becomes world’s 4th fastest-growing freelance market Pakistan has been ranked as the 4th fastest growing freelance market with 47pc growth in freelance earnings during the second quarter of 2019, as compared to the same period of last year. According to the global payment platform ‘Payoneer’s Global Gig Economy Index’, published in Forbes, Pakistan was among the top freelance markets leaving behind regional countries including India, Bangladesh and Russia. The report was based on a sample of the more than 300,000 freelancers in Payoneer’s network. According to the report, the US stood at the top with 78pc growth, followed by UK at 59pc, Brazil 48pc, Pakistan 47pc, Ukraine 36pc, India 29pc, Bangladesh 27pc, Russia 20pc, and Serbia 19pc. -‘Thailand wants more imports from Pakistan’ Consul General (CG) of Royal Thai Consulate in Karachi Thatree Chauvachata has that his country is keen to increase the volume of imports from Pakistan. In an informal interaction with media at his residence late Sunday, he said that the two-way trade between Pakistan and Thailand during 2018 was approximately $1.674 billion, which was overwhelmingly in Bangkok’s favour. He invited the Pakistani businessmen to explore new avenues and markets in Thailand so that Pakistani exports could be increased and the balance of trade between the two countries could be improved. Chauvachata informed that an investment delegation from Thailand had recently visited Pakistan where the Thai traders held productive discussions with the Pakistani businessmen in Islamabad, Lahore, Faisalabad and Karachi. -Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline to be completed by 2024 Pakistan and Iran have decided to complete Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project by 2024 and in this regard a third agreement will be signed in Turkey during the next week between the Iran’s National Iranian Oil Company and the Pakistan’s Inter State Gas System. According to sources, Pakistan and Iran will sign Iran-Pakistan (IP) Gas Pipeline Project Amendment Agreement No 3 during the next week in Istanbul. They said that a principle decision to withdraw the legal notice by Iran was made during the prime minister’s visit to Iran in April as the special assistant to the PM on petroleum had held a meeting with his Iranian counterpart Amir H Zamaniania on the sidelines of this visit and the Iranian side had expressed its intentions to withdraw the notice if the agreement on extension of the gas sales and purchase agreement was finalised. -Dutch giant Royal Vopak to invest $2.8bn in Pakistan A delegation of Royal Vopak, a leading Dutch company that stores and handles various oil, chemicals, edible oils and natural gas-related products across the world, called on Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood on Tuesday to discuss new investment opportunities related to terminal and storage facilities for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in Pakistan. The delegation head apprised the adviser that Royal Vopak would invest $1.5 billion in a land-based LNG terminal facility. As per details, the terminal would provide cost-effective facilities to the LNG consumers in the country as modern technology would be introduced there. This facility would also create new employment opportunities, besides bringing technological advancements in the engineering sector of Pakistan. Moreover, Royal Vopak would invest $150 million in the construction of a prolepryplene plant as well as $800 million in PARCO Coastal Refinery in order to improve the country’s storage facility.
2019.07.03 00:43 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 126.
-AJK Muzaffarabad Airport to be made operational again Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) is set to be air-linked with the rest of world after plans for restoration of Muzzafarabad Airport got underway. The plan was disclosed in a meeting attended by AJK Chief Secretary Mathar Niaz Rana with Chief Executive Officer of Pakistan International Airlines Air Marshal Arshad Malik in Jammu and Kashmir House, Islamabad. The meeting principally decided to restore Muzaffarabad Airport for renovations and for operating commercial flights. -France returns looted relics to Pakistan France on Tuesday handed over to Pakistan nearly 450 ancient relics, some dating as far back as 4,000 BC, seized by French customs agents over a decade ago. Customs agents at Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport in 2006 intercepted a parcel from Pakistan containing 17 terracotta pots addressed to a museum in the city, claiming they were more than 100 years old. But an expert who examined them concluded they were artefacts dating back to the second or third millennium BC which had likely been stolen from burial sites in Balochistan. Following an extensive investigation which lasted almost a year and involved a raid on the Paris gallery, investigators found a total of 445 items, some dating as far back as 4,000 BC, with an estimated value of 139,000 euros [$157,000]. -Pakistan thrash India to claim World Snooker title Pakistan came on top of India in the final of IBSF World Snooker Championship Team Event in Doha, Qatar on Friday, defeating the arch-rivals 3-1 only three days after beating them in the Asian championship. Defending champions India’s team, comprising experienced Pankaj Advani and Laxman Rawat, lost to Pakistan’s Asjad Iqbal and Mohammad Bilal in a closely fought out contest. -USA designates BLA a terrorist outfit The United States on Tuesday designated militants fighting Pakistani rule in Balochistan as terrorists after it carried out deadly attacks targeting Chinese interests. The US State Department said it was classifying the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) as a global terrorist group, making it a crime for anyone in the US to assist the militants and freezing any US assets they may have. -Govt unveils Rs309bn Agricultural Emergency Programme The federal government on Tuesday unveiled an ambitious Rs309 billion Agriculture Emergency Programme to boost local production, reduce dependence on imports, improve the lives of poor farmers and lead the country towards sustainable development. The programme was announced at a joint press conference by National Food Security and Research Minister Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan and senior Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Jahangir Khan Tareen. The provincial agriculture ministers of Punjab, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were also present during the conference. Speaking on the occasion, Tareen lamented that despite being an agricultural country, having best kinds of water, land, environment and other prerequisites, Pakistan had turned into a food importing country. “In last year alone, agriculture products worth $4 billion were imported,” he informed. -Treasury single account gets going; Benami crackdown zones identified The government has empowered the federal secretaries to have full control over development and non-development funds of their respective ministries and attached organisations and be responsible to surrender all unspent funds to the consolidated fund at least 25 days before the close of fiscal year. This has been done with coming into force of the Public Finance Management Act 2019 as part of the Finance Bill 2019 that also completely binds the ministries and their secretaries not to keep public funds in commercial banks. As such, all funds would remain in the government’s single treasury account and could be withdrawn by principal accounting officers (PAOs) anytime in line with allocations without going through the financial advisors. -PTI Govt Retired a Record $9.5 Billion in Loans During Its First Year: Hammad Azhar Pakistan Tehrik e Insaf (PTI) led federal government has retired foreign loans worth $9.5 billion during its first year in power. Minister of State for Revenue, Hammad Azhar, made this revelation in National Assembly. -PIA to Start Flights to New York Soon Pakistanis and the Pakistani diaspora have been screaming for direct flights to the US since PIA closed operations in October 2017. PIA was working to meet the demand and finally, it looks like it will be happening very soon. Pakistan International Airlines has invited the Transport Security Administration (TSA) team of USA to have Islamabad Airport security cleared for direct operations to the US. They will be arriving in Islamabad on July 17 & 18th, 2019. -Pakistan begins receiving Saudi oil on deferred payment Saudi Arabia will begin supplying oil to Pakistan on deferred payment at the start of new fiscal year in July, the kingdom’s embassy in Islamabad said on Monday. “Pakistan will start receiving monthly oil supplies worth $275 million from Saudi Arabia with effect of July 1, 2019,” the embassy said in a notification. “These supplies will continue over the next three years, with a total value of $9.9 billion,” it added. The two countries inked a financing agreement for the import of petroleum products, crude oil and LNG on February 17 during the Saudi crown prince’s Islamabad visit earlier this year. -Rupee recovers to 158 in intra-bank market Pakistani rupee maintained uptrend on the first working day of the new fiscal year 2019-20 on Tuesday following an increase in the supply of dollars in the economy. The currency improved Rs2 to Rs158 to the US dollar in intra-day trade in the inter-bank market. Cumulatively, the rupee has strengthened Rs6 against the greenback in the two days. -Renault continues to operate in Pakistan French carmaker Renault has not abandoned its operations in Pakistan and the company’s concerns about extension in incentives of the automobile policy are being addressed, said a senior official of the Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development and Management Company (FIEDMC). “Renault wants an extension in the tax benefits being offered under the Automobile Development Policy 2016-21 and the Special Economic Zones Act,” said FIEDMC Chief Operating Officer Aamer Saleemi while talking to The Express Tribune. His statement came amid speculation that Renault was pulling out of Pakistan. The Automotive Development Policy was very lucrative for investors and the government was also ready to provide more incentives to them, said Saleemi. -500-year-old gurdwara opens doors for Indian pilgrims A gurdwara dating back 500 years in Sialkot has now been opened for Sikh pilgrims coming in from India. Pilgrims from the neighbouring country can now flock to perform their religious obligations at Gurdwara Babe-de-Ber. Several religious sites in Punjab are visited by Sikhs from several countries including India. -National Youth Council established For the first time in the history of the country, the National Youth Council has been established by Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan , Dunya News reported on Sunday. According to a notification issued by cabinet division, PM Khan will be the patron-in-chief and Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar will be the chairman of the 33-member youth council. -No increase in power tariff for consumers using up to 300 units: minister Power Division Minister Omar Ayub Khan said on Saturday that there would be no increase in tariff for the domestic electricity consumers using up to 300 units per month. “This segment accounts for 75 per cent of the total consumers,” he said while speaking at a press conference in Islamabad. He said for consumers using above 300 units, there would be a 50 per cent rise, which was of the increase recommended by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA). “We have reduced the proposed increase to half as we don’t intend to overburden the consumers.” -Pakistan to offer scholarships to around 3000 Afghan students Special Advisor to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan Friday said that Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan would be awarding around 3000 scholarships to Afghan students under a four-year programme. “These scholarships will be offered in phases and every year students of different categories will be the beneficiaries (of these scholarships),” she told APP. “This year around 795 Afghan students would come to Pakistan for studies and benefit under this programme. -NA passes federal budget, finance bill 2019-20 The National Assembly on Friday passed the federal budget approving the finance bill 2019-20 to give effect to the financial proposals of the government. The total outlay of the budget was Rs7.022 trillion, focusing on fiscal consolidation, revenue mobilization, austerity measures and protection to the vulnerable segments of society. -Kia Commences Local Production, Announces Booking Date for Sportage Kia Lucky Motors Pakistan Limited (KLM), one of the eight new prospective entrants into the automobile sector, has successfully completed commissioning of equipment and pilot production and recently commenced CKD (Completely Knocked Down) operations at its plant located at Port Qasim, Karachi. KLM is a joint venture between the Lucky group and South Korea’s Kia Motors. The total project cost of the company amounts to Rs. 19.5 billion read the notification. -Nearly 5,000 Indian Sikh Yatrees arrive in Lahore via Wagah border Nearly five thousand Indian Sikh yatrees arrived at Lahore from India this afternoon via Wagah border. They will participate in the death anniversary of the renowned Punjabi king and Sikh leader Maharaja Ranjeet Singh. The Deputy Secretary Evacuee Trust Properties Board Imran Gondal and chairman All Pakistan Gurdawara Parbandhak Committee Tara Singh welcomed them warmly at the Lahore Railway station and the visitants were garlanded. The Sikh yatrees will perform religious rites and worship at various Gurdwaras of Punjab. -Cabinet approves sale of 31 state properties The cabinet has given the go-ahead for immediately initiating the process of selling 31 public-sector properties with a value of around Rs10 billion. Nine ministries and divisions have prepared a list of 31 properties for putting them on sale immediately, which will help generate funds to support the cash-strapped government. Prime Minister Imran Khan had constituted an asset management committee comprising five cabinet members and headed by the minister for maritime affairs, which held regular meetings to monitor progress on the matter. -Japan Airline Wants to Start Flights on a New Route: Ambassador Japan Airlines wants to start flights on the Islamabad-Bangkok-Tokyo route, announced Japanese Ambassador Kuninori Matsuda during a meeting with Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan. The Japanese Ambassador said: "PIA has two weekly flights on the route of Islamabad-Beijing-Tokyo. Japanese Airline wants to start flight on Islamabad-Bangkok-Tokyo route." The Minister thanked the ambassador for enhancing the Fifth Freedom Rights quota in March 2019 from 1300 passengers to 4000 passengers per month and from 40 tons of cargo to 100 tons of cargo per month. -Exports surge 22.9pc to Rs2.86tr in 11 months Exports from Pakistan, in terms of rupees, increased by 22.92 per cent during July-May 2018-2019, compared with the corresponding period of last year. The exports from Pakistan during the period under review were recorded at Rs2.86 trillion as compared to the exports of Rs2.33 trillion during the first eleven months of the last fiscal year (2017-18), according to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). On a year-on-year basis, the exports from Pakistan during May 2019 increased by 24.06 per cent when compared to the exports of the same month of last fiscal year. The exports during May 2019 amounted to Rs306,303 million as against Rs246,907 million in May 2018. On a month-on-month basis, the exports during May 2019 increased by 3.64pc when compared to the exports of Rs295,541 million in April 2019. -One Million People to Benefit from PM’s ‘Kamyab Jawan Program’ Prime Minister Youth Affairs Program (PMYAP) has devised a strategy to facilitate as many as one million youngsters in the country during the first phase of the ‘Prime Minister Kamyab Jawan Program.’ An official of the youth affairs program told APP that the scheme will benefit the youth with skills, livelihood, and better income opportunities. He told the state-owned company that the agenda of Kamyab Jawan Programme is to strengthen the micro and small business enterprises and provide financial assistance to the youth for better education, employment, and business opportunities. Moreover, interest-free loans under the program will also help skilled students to launch startups and grow as an entrepreneur. -PTA unveils plan for testing and development of 5G in Pakistan Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has unveiled the framework for testing and development of future technologies, particularly 5G wireless networks, in the country. The framework enables the use of radio spectrum on trial basis for non-commercial purposes to carry out trials for innovative use of radio frequency spectrum, apparatus/equipment and academic purposes including but not limited to scientific research, radio concepts and new systems demonstrations. In this regard, government of Pakistan’s Policy Directive based framework has invited all stakeholders for participation and in subject trials. Introduction The rapid growth in mobile data traffic and consumer demand for enhanced mobile broadband experience have led to an increasing emphasis on the upcoming fifth generation of mobile technology (“5G”). -[UK to fund projects worth 1b pounds in Pakistan](https://tribune.com.pk/story/2000346/2-uk-fund-projects-worth-1b-pounds-pakistan/ The United Kingdom (UK) has announced financing projects worth one billion pounds in Pakistan, encouraging more British firms to set up facilities in the country, since Islamabad has improved environment for doing business as per the World Bank’s ease of doing business index. “UK announced an increase in our funding to support Pakistan from 400 million pounds to one billion pounds,” UK Her Majesty’s Regional Trade Commissioner for the Middle East, Afghanistan and Pakistan (MEAP) region, Simon Penny said, while speaking to journalists at the British Deputy High Commission in Karachi on Tuesday. UK will provide direct lending into projects like infrastructure, roads, hospitals, and schools. -US tech firm to make investment in Pakistan solar power sector The US-based firm named Solar Stick is planning to invest in Pakistan’s Solar Power Sector through a joint venture with a local Pakistani firm called Net Power Company. Solar Stick has also introduced a mobile solar technology in Pakistan which can be used for civil and military purposes and can help in reducing the circular debt on Pakistan. The announcement about the technology was made by the US Embassy Commercial Officer in Pakistan link Russel and US company Solar Stick’s Pakistani partner Muslim Lakhani on Tuesday, during a ceremony held in Islamabad. -In Pakistan's northern mountains, plastic bags face the bin Hunza, northern Pakistan flanked by soaring mountain ranges and glaciers, plastic shopping bags are now illegal. In late April, the provincial government banned their "use, purchase, export or import" in an effort to cut plastic waste and pollution, and rolled out first deliveries of cloth shopping bags. Now those hang in shops, and many customers have started bringing bags from home - though not everyone is happy with the change. "The use of plastic bags is not only handy, but also very cheap as compared to cloth and paper bags," said Ikram Jamal, a trader in the city's main market. "It is a challenge for customers as well as for traders to instantly ban plastic bags, amid the lack of availability of an alternate option," he said, noting only a limited supply of cloth bags was so far available. But 50-year-old Shamim Bagum, a shopper in the market, said she was adjusting. "After shopkeepers refused to give us polythene bags, I now myself bring a cloth bag to take groceries home," she said. Carrying cloth bags for all shopping can be a challenge, but people need to obey the government's decision, she said. -Domestic crude oil production increases 12.8 % in 9-months The country's domestic production of crude oil witnesses around 12. 8 percent increase during a nine-month period (July-March) of the last fiscal year. According to official data available with APP, the domestic production of crude oil remained 24.6 million barrels during the period under review as compared to 21.8 million barrels in the same period of year 2017-18. -Annual Report shows optimism about Economy The exports from Pakistan are projected to reach at US$ 26,187 million in fiscal year 2019-20 from US$ 24,656 million estimated for the FY2018-19, official document revealed. The Annual Plan (2019-20) envisages higher growth in exports sector in the backdrop of positive global outlook, improved domestic infrastructure, low cost energy supply to exports sector and competitiveness gained due to depreciation of the rupee. The current account deficit has been projected to be contained at US$ 8,312 million (3% of GDP) during 2019-20 as against estimated deficit of US$ 13,179 million (4.7% of GDP) by the end of outgoing fiscal year. Meanwhile, the Capital inflows are projected to decrease from estimated US$ 374 million in 2018-19 to US$ 350 million in 2019-20. -Pakistan government to upgrade it's hydrocarbon Laboratories Hydrocarbon Development Institute of Pakistan (HDIP) would execute two projects worth Rs147.960 million fort up-gradation of its testing laboratories in different cities during the next fiscal year to ensure provision of quality petroleum products to consumers. “An amount of Rs70 million will be utilised for expansion and up-gradation of Pakistan Petroleum Corehouse for its sustainable operations to facilitate oil and gas exploration research in the country, and Rs77.960 million will be utilised for up-gradation of HDIP’s Petroleum testing facilities at Islamabad, Lahore, Multan, Peshawar, Quetta and the ISO Certification of Petroleum Testing Laboratory at Islamabad in the Public Sector Development Programme 2019-20,” according to official data available with APP. -PTI government unveils five fundamentals for next year budget Prime Minister's Advisor on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh says handling current account deficit, strict austerity measures, helping downtrodden, facilitating industry, and mobilizing revenues are the five fundamentals of next year's budget. He was addressing a news conference, flanked with Prime Minister's Special Assistant on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar, and Chairman FBR Shabbar Zaidi in Islamabad this afternoon. -KP government to build multiple small and medium level dams across the province Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has chalked out a multi-dimensional plan to construct small and medium dams with an estimated cost of 9.5 billion rupees in different districts of the province. Sites for the dams have been identified by Irrigation Department and work on it would commence soon. Besides construction of the dams, the plan also includes schemes of water supply and flood protection walls. The PTI-led Government has already constructed eight small and medium dams in the province during its last tenure which are irrigating thousands of acres of land. -Indian Davis Cup Team to Travel to Pakistan After 55 Years An Indian Davis Cup team is set to travel to Pakistan after 55 years with the national tennis federation AITA claiming that the central government will allow the players to compete against the neighboring country in September. The last time an Indian Davis squad traveled to Pakistan was in March 1964, which was held in Lahore, where India won 4-0. Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) President, Salim Saifullah has said that they will host India on grass courts of Pakistan Sports Complex. -Cement Exports Rise by 26% in First 11 Months of FY 2018-19 Despite a decrease in May 2019, the cement sector witnessed a 26% increase in exports during the first eleven months of the ongoing fiscal year, compared to the corresponding period of last year. Meanwhile, on a year-on-year basis, cement exports witnessed a decrease of 17.97 percent during the month of May 2019 when compared to the same month of last year. The cement exports in May 2019 were recorded at $17.050 million against the exports of $20.785 million in May 2018. According to the latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), on a monthly basis, the export of cement decreased by 22.01 percent during May 2019, when compared to $21.861 million during April 2018. -KP Govt Fulfills Promise of Planting a Billion Trees in 3 Years In just three years, the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has fulfilled its promise of planting a billion trees in the province. The ‘Billion Tree Tsunami’ project was initiated by Imran Khan in November 2014 and it hoped to reverse land degradation and deforestation in the formerly forested KP. The landscape, which was deforested previously, is being restored naturally by the project and will help efforts to combat climate change and mitigate the risk posed by higher temperatures. -Over 95,000 people availed Assets Declaration Scheme so far: Shabbar Zaidi More than 95,000 people have registered their undeclared assets so far with the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) by availing the Assets Declaration Scheme, the deadline of which is ending on Wednesday, July 3, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Syed Shabbar Ziadi told APP on Tuesday. “The Asset Declaration Scheme provides a golden chance to the people to declare their undeclared assets by paying a little amount in taxes,” the chairman said. He was of the view that tax filing was the responsibility of every citizen, as “only this could ensure growth and development of the country”. -PSX gains 310 points amid improved market sentiment The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) managed to end the session on Tuesday with decent gains, as the indices traded in the green zone for most part of the day amid improved volumes. On the economic front, the Pakistani Rupee improved by Rs2 to Rs158 against the US Dollar in the interbank market intraday. Moreover, Pakistan’s inflation rate declined to 8.89pc in June 2019 as compared to 9.11pc in May 2019 and 5.21pc in June 2018. On a monthly basis, the CPI increased by 0.36pc in June as compared to 0.78pc in May. -Sindh Announces 50 Percent Discount on Bus Fares for Students Sindh government has announced a 50% discount for bus fares for students. The announcement was made by the provincial Minister for Transport & Mass Transit, Syed Awais Qadir on Friday. While talking to media in Karachi, the minister said that he had directed the transporters to discount fares for students for their traveling. He warned the transporters that non-compliance might cost them their route permits. Students of these areas can avail the facility by showing their student IDs, issued from the respective educational institutes, to the conductors, he added. -Prime Minister Imran Khan Likely to Visit US Next Month Prime Minister Imran Khan is expected to embark on an official four-day visit to the United States next month. There, he will meet with the country’s high-level leadership including President Donald Trump. Some diplomatic sources have confirmed that the two countries are collaborating to finalize the dates of the visit. Rumor has it that Khan will depart for the US on July 20. “It is likely, but not final yet,” said a diplomat in response to the question. Earlier on Thursday, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, in an informal conversation with reporters, revealed that the US President Donald Trump had invited PM Khan in June but, he could not go on the visit due to the crucial budget session.
2019.06.26 01:17 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 125.
-Pakistanis whiten Rs1 trillion assets in foreign countries, UAE tops list Pakistanis are expected to declare more than Rs1 trillion (Dh23.35 billion) of assets in foreign countries this year under the ongoing tax amnesty scheme, a senior official has said. Dr Muhammad Ashfaq Ahmed, director-general for International Tax at Federal Board of Revenues, said the highest declaration of assets came from the UAE, accounting for nearly one-third or Rs346 billion (Dh8 billion) of the total whitened foreign assets. The UAE was followed by Switzerland (Rs114.8 billion), the UK (Rs89.7 billion), Singapore (Rs87.3 billion) and British Virgin Islands (Rs48.9 billion). Ahmed said this year's tax amnesty scheme is also seeing good response from the UAE, Singapore, the UK and Canada markets. "Most of the foreign assets are being whitened in the UAE, Singapore, the UK and Canada. On a bilateral arrangement, the UAE and Pakistan share full details of the property. As far as bank details are concerned, they are shared automatically," Ahmed said during a briefing about the scheme at the Pakistani Consulate in Dubai on Monday evening. -Investments to grow 15.8pc of GDP in FY 2020 The investment to GDP ratio has been targeted by the government to grow at 15.8 percent during the upcoming fiscal year 2019-20 in order to achieve sustained and inclusive growth, official sources said. Among the total investments, the fixed investment is expected to grow to 14.2 percent of GDP during the year while the National Savings as percentage of GDP are targeted at 12.8 percent, official data revealed. The focus is to replace consumption led growth by investment led growth, it said adding that monetary policy contraction was aimed to contain the twin deficits by curtailing the aggregate demand with smoothen consumption as the high interest rate would create incentives for savings and enhance resource availability for growth. -FBR decides to bring unregistered doctors into tax net In an effort to broaden tax base, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) here on Tuesday decided to bring unregistered doctors into tax net, ARY News reported. In a letter to Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC), FBR sought details of its members within 10 days. All the doctors registered with the PMDC were bound to file their tax returns, FBR said and added that most of its members were not filing their tax returns. Earlier on February 19, Prime Minister Imran Khan had directed the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to adopt new and reformed system for the tax collection and create ease for expansion of tax net in the country. -Textile exports increase 2pc to $11.4bn The export of textile and its articles from the country witnessed an increase of 2.17 per cent during the first ten months of the current fiscal year as compared to the exports of the corresponding period last year, State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) reported on Monday. The textile exports from the country during July-April 2018-19 were recorded at $11.419 billion against the export of $11.176 billion during July-April 2017-18. The textile commodities that contributed positively in the external trade included apparel articles and clothing accessories (knitted), the export of which grew from $2.24 billion last year to $2.50 billion during the current fiscal year, an increase of 11.87pc. The exports of apparel articles or clothing accessories (not knitted) increased by 2.22pc, from $2.06 billion to $2.11 billion, whereas the exports of other made-up textile articles increased by 0.39pc, from $3.38 billion to $3.39 billion. -Pak Army constructs girls’ school in place of Hakimullah Mehsud’s headquarter Pakistan Army has completed construction of a girls’ school for higher secondary education at the place where once the headquarter of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant Hakimullah Mehsud stood, local media reported on Monday. During the war against terrorism in Orakzai Agency, the building of the school was completely destroyed. Later, the site was taken over by the militants and converted into their headquarter. Once the war abated, Pakistan Army rebuilt the school at the same place where it used to be prior to the war. -Pakistan to get $ 3 billion direct investment from Qatar Pakistan will receive $ 3 billion direct investment from Qatar, state owned Qatar news agency quoted foreign minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdul Rahman al-Thani. Islamic republic of Pakistan under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan is struggling to boost the economy. During recent months country’s premier has taken bitter decisions to uplift the depleting reserves condition. Pakistan, which is due to receive International Monetary Fund bailout, will also get $3 billion direct investments from Qatar. -Govt to Set Up a Special Economic Zone for Making Electric Vehicles The federal government is planning to set up a special economic zone (SEZ) for manufacturing electric vehicles. The development was made public by the Advisor to Prime Minister on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam, on Friday. He announced this development while addressing a meeting with electric vehicle manufacturers from China in Islamabad. During the meeting, Malik Amin added that the government was also seeking assistance from Pakistan Air Force (PAF). “There is plenty of skilled to semi-skilled workforce available in Kamra (Attock), the proposed site for the SEZ,” advisor to PM said, adding that the electric vehicles will not only be environment-friendly but will also reduce Pakistan’s oil import bill. Currently, Pakistan’s electricity production is higher than the demand, but the government has to pay producers in terms of capacity. “This makes a case for the introduction of electric cars in the transport sector,” Malik Amin argued. -Islamabad to Get Pakistan’s First Intelligent Transportation System For the first time ever in Pakistan, an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) is set to be introduced by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to ease transportation-related issues. The system will be installed at the Islamabad Expressway from Zero Point to Rawat and the traffic will be monitored through this system particularly at the intersections. Under this system, CCTV cameras, with static and Pan-Tilt & Zoom (PTZ), will be set up after every three (03) kilometers with a coverage of 500 meters along with the establishment of a Traffic Control Center (TCC). The TCC will be linked with field devices having backlight LED Video wall screens, video wall controller, video storage and core network switch. -FATF declares Pakistan’s progress towards action plan satisfactory Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Friday declared Pakistan’s progress towards implementation of the action plan satisfactory, ARY News reported. According to the to the details, the plenary meeting the FATF took place in Orlando today to review the compliance of a number of countries, including Pakistan with the international standards on Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism (AML-CFT). FATF reviewed progress made by Pakistan towards the implementation of the action plan. It acknowledged the steps taken by Pakistan to improve its AML-CFT regime and highlighted the need for further actions for implementing the Action Plan. FATF will undertake the next review of Pakistan’s Progress in October 2019. On the occasion, the officials of Pakistan government of reiterated its commitment to take all necessary measures to ensure completion of the action plan in a timely manner. -Chinese company intends to spend $1bn on Pakistani products: Dawood Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood said on Friday that a Chinese company, Li & Fung, has expressed its intention to enhance its purchasing from Pakistan to up to $1 billion, adding that this would help promote industrial productivity. Addressing a press conference along with Chinese Ambassador Jao Ying, he said Li & Fung was a 134-year-old company, enjoying a prominent market position across the world. Senior government officials, including Commerce Secretary Ahmad Nawaz Sukhera, were also present on the occasion. “The company has about 8,000 business houses across the world and it deals with both buyers and manufacturers,” the adviser stated. “Commencement of its operations in the country will equally benefit the vendors as well as manufacturers.” -10,000 Indian Sikhs to visit Pakistan Punjab Governor Punjab Ch Muhammad Sarwar has supported the proposal by Sikh community leaders binding Indian Sikh pilgrims to carry dollars with them instead of Indian rupee. “In past, only 3,000 visas were issued to Sikh pilgrims but we have decided to give 10,000 visas. All state institutions are making unanimous strategy to turn this proposal into reality,” Punjab Governor Ch Sarwar told reporters during his visit to Nankana Sahab. Ch Sarwar left for Nankana from Lahore on Friday morning to review the arrangements being made to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak Dev, the first Guru of Sikh religion. It was during this visit that Sikh leaders floated the suggestion that it should be made binding on the Sikh pilgrims from India to carry dollars instead of Indian rupee. The proposed step will be beneficial for Pakistan economy. -Chinese firms ready to relocate industrial units Seven Chinese companies have expressed willingness to relocate their industrial units to Pakistan in the second phase of industrialisation under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), said Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood. Chinese manufacturing units of textile and leather would be relocated to Faisalabad. Chinese company Long March International would also set up a tyre manufacturing plant in Pakistan, revealed Dawood while addressing a press conference, along with Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing, on Friday. “We have not given attention and the Chinese industry has been relocated to the Far East, Ethiopia and Egypt. We should grab the opportunity this time around,” the PM adviser emphasised. -Majid Al Futtaim to invest Rs40b in Pakistan’s retail Majid Al Futtaim Hypermarkets Pakistan is looking to invest another Rs40 billion in the country’s booming retail business, despite the current uncertain economic situation of the nation. The group has already invested Rs8 billion since 2009 and is operating seven hypermarkets and one superstore in four metropolitan cities. The group’s country manager for Pakistan, Gyu Taeg Kim, said that in the next 10 years they will further expand in first tier cities with a special focus on second tier cities, thereby increasing the total number of stores up to fifty. -Qatar and Pakistan ink multiple agreements to enhance mutual cooperation Pakistan and Qatar on Saturday signed three different memorandums of understanding (MOUs) to further enhance the mutual cooperation in areas of trade, business, tourism and investment. Prime Minister Imran Khan and Amir of the State of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani witnessed the signing ceremony held here at the Prime Minister House. -STEM schools to be established in Pakistan: Fawad Chaudhry Chaudhry Fawad Hussain, Federal Minister for Science and Technology, on Friday said that STEM schools would be established in all the districts of Pakistan. In a meeting with Chairman HEC Tariq Binori, he expressed his unequivocal intent to make the STEM School Project a success in Pakistan. While describing the roadmap for the implementation of the STEM project, the minister said that initially seven reputed universities of Pakistan would be included in the Project to impart STEM education to the students ranging from grade 6 to grade 10. According to the Project, each university will be entrusted with the task of imparting STEM education to two schools. -Pakistan and European Union ink strategic engagement plan Pakistan and the European Union on Tuesday signed the strategic engagement plan for steering their bilateral ties and enhancing cooperation in diverse fields. Addressing a joint press conference along with representative of the Union Federica Mogherini, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said, “Strategic engagement plan is a long-term resolve to further boost cooperation between Pakistan and the European Union.” -Twelve foreign firms barred from hiring Pakistani workforce due to breaking ethics code Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment (BEOE) has barred twelve foreign recruiting firms from hiring Pakistani workforce due to non-compliance of employment code, resulting into grave problems for the emigrants. The Bureau, working under the auspices of Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, had blacklisted 12 foreign recruiting companies during current year for not ensuring the promised jobs, timely and agreed salaries, besides issuance of fake visas, a top official from BEOE told APP here on Tuesday. -Tarbela 4th Hydropower project completed Tarbela 4th Extension Hydropower Project was completed with the support of World Bank, WAPDA Chairman Muzammil Hussain Friday informed the sub-committee of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Friday. He was responding to the objections raised by audit department on alleged anomalies in utilizing the public money in different projects. -PTA Launches 2-Step Authentication for Phone Registration With DIRBS Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has introduced a two-step authentication process to curb the misuse of identity for mobile registration. The applicant’s entered mobile number is authenticated against biometrically verified mobile number database and a one-time password (OTP) is sent via SMS to applicant’s mobile number. Upon entry of OTP code, an application is transmitted to the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). In case of a failed authentication, the application is put on hold. The applicant will receive intimation via the system to upload a copy of their passport, CNIC & immigration stamp pictures. Upon validation, the system will transmit the request to FBR. -CDA Notifies 400 Buildings in Islamabad to Make Them Disabled-Accessible Islamabad’s Capital Development Authority (CDA) has issued notices to around 400 commercial buildings in the city to make them special people-friendly zones. The building control wing of CDA recently collected the data of over 400 commercial buildings in the capital and found out that only a few of them were accessible to people with disabilities (PWDs). According to the assessment, the buildings that were built in the early years of Islamabad were not forced to facilitate PWDs, however, it is now conditional for all the modern buildings. Raheel Junejo, an official of the building control wing revealed that the authorities of the buildings have been asked to make PWD-friendly changes to their building or face the consequences. He said the CDA will seal the buildings in case of non-compliance. “Unfortunately only a few buildings have a mechanism for PWDs but they are still risky. Their ramps are not friendly as well as their lifts are not working or lack a fitness certificate” Junejo said. -Shifeng to Introduce Small Agricultural Tractors in Punjab A renowned Chinese company, Shifeng is planning to introduce small agricultural tractors in Punjab. A representative of the company made this announcement on Monday at the Lahore Expo Centre. Shifeng mainly deals with agricultural machinery and automobile products. For the past 17 years, the company has been successfully operating in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and is now aiming to expand its business to Punjab. -FBR’s Automated Sales Tax Registration System Will be Live From 1st July The new automated system for sales tax registration will be effective from July 1, 2019, according to the Federal Board of Revenue. The system will register the applicant for sales tax if they provide the documents mentioned below. According to the statement by the FBR, the NTN/income tax registration shall be used as login credentials to upload: bank account certificate(s) in the name of the business, particulars of all bank branches, GPS-tagged photographs of the business premises and consumer numbers of gas and electricity bills. “After registration, the applicant or an authorized person should visit the e-Sahulat Centre of NADRA within a month for biometric verification,” the FBR said in a statement. In case of failure to visit or failure of verification, the registered person’s name shall be taken off the sales tax Active Taxpayer List (ATL). -Government announces crackdown on sugar millers The government announced on Monday that it would launch a crackdown on the sugar millers involved in hoarding to jack up prices artificially in order to pocket billions of rupees from consumers. The price hike came after the government increased general sales tax on sugar from 8% to 17% while announcing the federal budget for 2019-20. However, the sugar millers have already increased prices without waiting for approval of the budget by parliament, which is currently debating the budget. Briefing a special committee of the National Assembly Committee on Agriculture Products, in a meeting chaired by National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser, Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar said the government would conduct raids on sugar mills, which had hoarded the commodity and increased prices artificially. -Chinese firm to invest $2m in chemical sector Following incentives offered by Pakistan government, Guangzhou Rongshen Trading Company, one of the largest manufacturers of fragrance and perfumes in China, has announced plans to invest $2 million in the chemical sector of Pakistan and explore further investment avenues. Guangzhou Rongshen Trading Company Chairman Ivan Jiang signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development and Management Company (FIEDMC) Chairman Mian Kashif Ashfaq, said a statement issued on Monday. Talking to the media following signing of the MoU, Ivan said the legal framework in Pakistan was sound and comprehensive. He underlined that Pakistan government had already played a vital role in providing a business-friendly environment and security to Chinese companies.
2019.04.28 00:48 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 109.
Exams finished yo! Ya boi did amazing! Daily posts now that I'm free. -Lahore surpasses Karachi, Islamabad in crime control The provincial capital Lahore surpasses Karachi and Islamabad in controlling crime and moves 36 steps down from the 138th position with crime index 46.9 in 2018 to 174th (42.06) this year. The World Crime Index for 2019 released the periodically updated crime status of 319 mega cities of the world, including three of Pakistan – Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad. Karachi and Islamabad dropped 11 and six notches, respectively, in the list of the cities reporting bad crime rate. According to the periodically updated Crime Index 2019, Islamabad ranks 232 with crime index of 32.88 and Karachi 61 with 58.43 crime index. -Archaeologists discover '2,200-year-old workshop from Indo-Greek era' in Peshawar Archaeologists from the University of Peshawar (UoP) said on Thursday that they have discovered remains of metal workshops from the Indo-Greek period dating back to the 2nd century BCE, DawnNewsTV reported on Thursday. The discovery has been made from a site in the Hayatabad neighbourhood of Peshawar, located close to the border of the Khyber district, said professor Gul Rahim, adding that excavation work at the site had been going on for the past three years. He said that they have recovered coins dating back to the Indo-Greek period and estimated to be about 2,200 years old. -National University of Technology inaugurated in Islamabad The Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has inaugurated the National University of Technology (NUTECH) in Islamabad. The NUTECH is a public sector university which is run by a department of Pakistan Army called the Frontier Works Organization (FWO). The Army Chief of Pakistan during the launching ceremony appreciated the hard work of the NUTECH management to successfully launch the university in a short span of two years. He appreciated the unique concept of the university and advised the management to maintain high standards of education at the institute. COAS assured that the university will receive full support from the Pakistan Army, in building its main campus on the outskirts of Rawalpindi and Islamabad. These campuses will accommodate 30 to 50 thousand students at the same time. He lauded the effective linkages between university and industry, which will help to produce tech leaders and skilled workforce for the economic development of Pakistan. -Police force welcomes transgender recruits in Pakistan province The police force in Pakistan’s Sindh province has announced that they will now allow transgender people to serve as regular duty police officers. The police chief said that it was time to offer more opportunities to transgender people, who are often relegated to “menial jobs” in Pakistan, according to NBC News. We will make them part of Sindh police,” Syed Kaleem Imam, Inspector General of the Sindh police told Reuters today. “They are good God-gifted people. Citizens like us. We should stand by them,” he added. -Japan provides $32 million grant to PIMS hospital The Japanese government has provided $32 million grant for the extension of intensive care at maternal and child health care centre and children’s hospital at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS). According to a press release issued on Wednesday by the Japanese Embassy in Islamabad, the PIMS will receive a grant of $32m. Moreover, under the economic and social development programme, another grant of $17m will be given to support cargo inspection facility at dry ports of Pakistan. In this regard, Special Secretary (Asia-Pacific) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ahmad Imtiaz and Japanese Ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori Matsuda signed the agreements on behalf of their respective governments in Tokyo on Tuesday in the presence of Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and his Japanese counterpart Taro Kono. -Renault keen to set up manufacturing plant in Pakistan: French senator Allizard French Senator Pascal Allizard on Wednesday said French automobile manufacturer Renault was keen to set up a manufacturing plant in Pakistan and with its arrival more French business would come to the country. Senator Allizard, who is leading a three-member French Parliamentary Group, was addressing a press conference here. He said they had a meeting with the Board of Investment (BoI) chairman where a presentation was given to them about the areas where the French companies could invest in various sectors in Pakistan. -PTI government revealed the date for the FY 2019-20 Budget The government will be presenting the Federal Budget 2018-19 by May 26, a government official revealed on Wednesday. Talking to media after the meeting of National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs, Finance Secretary Younus Dagha said that his ministry has expedited its work with regard to the next fiscal budget as well as the amnesty scheme. “The assets declaration scheme, which has already been discussed in the cabinet, will be finalized by the next week with the amendments directed by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Hafeez Shaikh,” he stated. -Imports reduced by $3.5bn in FY19, PM’s aide tells NA Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood said on Wednesday that imports into the country reduced by up to $3.5 billion during the current fiscal year (FY19). Responding to a question in the National Assembly, the PM’s adviser said that import duty was increased on finished goods, resulting in an overall decrease in imports. He claimed that the trade gap has been reduced due to the prudent policies of the government, hoping that the reduction in imports would reach $6 billion by the end of this fiscal. The adviser said the government formulated import and export policies specifically to address the issues pertaining to current account deficit. He admitted that the country’s exports neither increased nor decreased during the previous months, but hoped that they would rise in the coming months. -World Bank may lend Pakistan up to $8bn: sources Pakistan is expected to receive financial assistance of up to $8 bn from World Bank after the former has already reached an understanding with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a bailout package, ARY News reported. In this regard, it was learnt that Prime Minister Imran Khan is scheduled to meet the CEO of World Bank Kristalina Georgieva during his visit to China on April 26. During the meeting, the premier would discuss country’s economic outlook with the Bank’s top executive. -High level South Korean delegation arrives in Pakistan A Parliamentary Delegation of South Korea called on President Dr Arif Alvi in Islamabad today. Talking on this occasion, the President said bilateral trade between the two countries is not commensurate with its real potential. He welcomed continuous increase in investment by the Korean companies in various sectors of Pakistani economy. The President urged Korean companies to take full advantage of Pakistan’s liberal investment regime and to invest in Mining, Agro-industry and IT sectors. Update -Pakistan, South Korea sign framework arrangement worth $500m Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh on Wednesday witnessed the signing of a $500 million framework arrangement between Pakistan and Republic of Korea. Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and Ambassador of the Republic of Korea Kwak Sung-Kyu signed the framework arrangement on behalf of their respective governments. Under the signed Framework Arrangement (2018-20), South Korea will provide long term concessional financing up to $500 million for the execution of various development projects in health, information technology, communication, agriculture, and energy etc. Earlier, the ambassador called on the adviser and discussed matters pertaining to the enhancement of bilateral cooperation between the two countries. The adviser informed the envoy that Pakistan attached significant importance to its ties with the Republic of Korea which had so many layers of cooperation with Pakistan in both the public and private sectors. More developments -Pakistan and South Korea Sign Various Development Agreements South Korea will provide long-term concessional financing of up to $500 million for the execution of various development projects in Health, Information Technology, Communication, Agriculture, and Energy sectors. To this end, a Framework Arrangement was signed in Islamabad today in the presence of Prime Minister’s Adviser on Finance Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh. Secretary Economic Affairs Division Noor Ahmed and Korean Ambassador Kwak Sung-Kyu signed the Framework Arrangement. -CDWP clears two projects worth Rs17.2bn The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) on Tuesday accorded approval to a project worth Rs202.412 million and recommended a project worth Rs17 billion to Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC). The meeting of the committee was held with Planning, Development and Reform Minister for Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar in the chair. Planning Secretary Zafar Hasan and senior officials from federal and provincial governments were also present on the occasion. Projects related to mass media and water resources were presented in the meeting. The first project related to mass media was the Rs17 billion ‘Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Integrated Tourism Development Project (KITE)’, which was presented by the KP government. The project aimed at developing the tourism sector in KP, which would subsequently help generate employment and revenue, reduce poverty and develop infrastructure in the area. It also envisioned creating an enabling environment for private sector operations. -Current account deficit may shrink to $7bn in FY19: APTMA The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Patron-in-Chief Gohar Ejaz has expressed hope that the current account deficit would be down to zero within two years if the monetary policy remains tight and exports are encouraged through new investments. He said the overall imports may end up at $53 billion while exports at $24 billion, adding that this would reduce the trade deficit to $29 billion at the end of the current fiscal year. “Remittances worth $22 billion would further reduce the current account deficit to $7 billion by the end of the current fiscal, down from $17 billion last year,” he maintained. He said exports were recorded at $17.1 billion while imports at $40.7 billion in March 2019. -South Punjab province bill tabled in National Assembly of Pakistan The legislation bill of South Punjab province from Punjab on Tuesday was presented in National Assembly (NA). According to the details garnered, the legislation bill of South Punjab province tabled in the NA, however, the federal government also supported the bill. Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Q backed the bill tabled in the lower house of the parliament. -Pak-China FTA to be Signed on April 28: Chinese Envoy During an upcoming visit to China, Prime Minister Imran Khan would hold meetings with the Chinese leadership to discuss interventions under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) besides regional and international issues, said the Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing on Monday. Speaking at a press conference at the Chinese embassy on the upcoming Second Belt and Road Forum to be held in Beijing from April 25 to 27, he said the FTA had finally been finalized after eight years of negotiations and it would be inked by commerce ministers of the two countries. Under the FTA-Phase II, Jing said, China would provide market access to 90% of Pakistani commodities at zero rated duty, while Pakistan would give China market access to 65% tariff lines. -Govt Removes Officials for Not Resolving Complaints Shared on Citizen Portal Pakistan Citizen Portal has been actively collaborating with the ministries and government departments to address the grievances of bereaved people. The success rate for the portal is very high, and many people have praised the problem-solving application on social media. But, in the last few months, many complaints surfaced on several online platforms about the fake redressal of grievances. Citizens blamed that a few government officials were falsely categorizing their complaints as ‘Resolved’ while they didn’t do anything to solve it. These complaints might have fallen on deaf ears in any other government but they were taken very seriously by Prime Minister Imran Khan-led PTI government and an inquiry was launched against the concerned officials. -Cement exports rise by 33pc in first 3 quarter The exports of cement from the country witnessed an increase of 32.81 percent during the first three quarter of the current fiscal year against the export of the corresponding period of last year. The cement exports were recorded at $ 221,258 million during July-March (2018-19) against the export of $166,597 million during July-March (2017-18), showing positive growth of 32.81 percent , according to the latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). In terms of quantity, the export of the cement also witnessed an increase of 55.44 percent by ongoing up from 5,188,661 metric ton to 3,338,065 metric ton, according to the data. -Karachi’s Ranking Improves Drastically in World Crime Index According to the World Crime Index for 2019 (Current), Karachi has moved down in this year’s rankings, reaching the 77th position, as of April 23 2019. The cities with the top spots are the ones with the most crimes, which means that Karachi has improved its control over criminal activities during 2019. The periodically updated Numbeo World Crime Index lists Karachi at 61st while the daily updated index currently lists Karachi at 77th which means that Karachi’s situation is improving with each passing day. Further -Karachi moves from 6th to 68th position on crime rate on World Crime Index, tweets DG ISPR Director General (DG) Inter Service Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor on Monday appreciated the efforts of civil administration and security forces for massively improving the security situation of Karachi . From DG ISPR’s official Twitter account, Ghafoor tweeted a picture of Karachi’s ranking on the world crime index from 2012 until 2019. The comparison marks a mammoth achievement as the metropolis stood at number six in 2012 which gradually turned better the following years, finally making it to 70th position on the crime index. -Over 20 international companies keen to invest billions in gas sector of Pakistan The All Pakistan CNG Association (APCNGA) on Monday said over twenty multinational and local companies are keen to invest billions in the gas sector of Pakistan which should be welcomed. These companies are inclined to invest in construction of new gas terminals, gas supply to consumers and laying down new gas pipelines, it said. This will reduce the price of electricity and gas, improve environment, end energy crisis and tame down circular debt, said Ghiyas Paracha, central leader of the APCNGA. In a statement issued here today, he said that local and foreign investment in the gas sector will help the government save over one billion dollars in oil import bill, provide affordable gas and electricity to domestic, commercial and industrial consumers and ensure smooth supplies. -Pakistan, Iran agree to set up joint border 'reaction force' Iran's President Hassan Rouhani and visiting Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan agreed on Monday to set up a joint border "reaction force" to counter terrorism. "We agreed to create a joint rapid reaction force at the borders for combating terrorism," Rouhani said, following months of increased tensions over attacks on both sides of the two countries' frontier. Addressing a joint press conference with Rouhani, Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is on his maiden official two-day visit to Iran, said Pakistan has resolved not to allow any militant group to operate from its soil. "We have been facing [impact] of terrorism since long. In Pakistan, we have suffered more terrorism than probably any other country. In the past [few years] we have lost around 70,000 people. Full appreciation must be made for our security agencies, with the way they tackled terrorism in Pakistan," the premier said. -Pakistan to export 200.000 tons rice to China by June: Dawood Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, and Industry Abdul Razak Dawood Tuesday informed that under the duty-free incentive package of $1 billion offered by China, Pakistan has so far exported 150,000 tons of sugar to China while the export of 200,000 tons of rice would be completed by June this year. Briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Commerce and Textile here at the parliament house, Dawood said China had extended a duty-free package for export of rice, sugar, and 350,000 tons of cotton yarn to Pakistan. Chairman of the committee Mirza Muhammad Afridi was of the view that local textile industry would be affected with exports of such a high amount of yarn as the price of the product would go high as a result. -Pakistan gets $551 million IDB loan for oil, LNG import Pakistan and the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) on Monday signed a loan agreement for a $551-million financing facility for liquefied natural gas (LNG) and oil imports, which will help reduce pressure on the foreign exchange reserves. The government has contracted the loan at 12-month London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) plus 2.22%, which at the current Libor rate translates into 4.96%, making it a relatively expensive deal. The loan has been obtained from the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), the trade arm of the IDB which extends credit for the import of oil and LNG. The signing ceremony was witnessed by newly appointed Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh. This facility will be utilised by Pakistan State Oil Company Limited (PSO), Pak-Arab Refinery Limited (Parco) and Pakistan LNG Limited (PLL). -Tech Quest gives women the opportunity to fight career stigmas In an attempt to increase women engagement in the tech sector, 10Pearls University hosted the third Women Tech Quest giving women an opportunity to compete, network and showcase their talent in the field of technology. The full-day marathon witnessed more than 150 women attendees who came from all backgrounds including professionals, students as well as home-makers. The event gave them an opportunity to network within the community, encouraging them to come to the forefront and show their role in the tech industry. -Pakistan Navy Test Fires Locally Developed Anti-Ship Missile Pakistan Navy has successfully test-fired a locally developed missile which can hit targets on both land and sea. The missile was launched from the Fast-Attack Missile Craft in North Arabian Sea which successfully hit its target, a statement from the Navy said on Tuesday. Pakistan Navy termed this successful test a ‘landmark development’ which will reinforce the country’s policy of credible minimum deterrence through indigenization and self-reliance. -‘Rs51bn recovered from power sector in four months’ Power Division Minister Omer Ayub Khan said on Tuesday that recovery in the power sector has witnessed an overall increase of Rs51 billion throughout the country during the last four months. He stated this while responding to a calling attention notice (CAN) in the National Assembly, which was sponsored by lawmakers Fazal Muhammad Khan, Malik Anwar Taj and Shahid Ahmed. The minister said owing to efforts of the incumbent team, line losses have been reduced up to 2.4pc during the last four months while the overall recovery has increased by 1.3pc. There are 8,610 electric feeders in the country out of which 6,061 feeders have been placed in category-I and category II, he informed, adding that there has been zero load management in Islamabad, Faisalabad, Lahore and Gujranwala while only five to eight per cent load management is being carried out in the feeders of Multan. -China welcomed Pakistan PM Imran Khan at 2nd Belt and Road Forum in Beijing China welcomed Prime Minister Imran Khan’s scheduled participation in the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, which is now finished, as it ended on April 27, 2019 in Beijing. Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang, during a routine press briefing on Tuesday, said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) had delivered benefits to the people of two countries with concrete outcomes. -‘Pakistan can boost growth to 8%’ Globalisation of Pakistan’s economy is the only solution to survive in the coming decades and in this endeavour the World Bank will assist Pakistan through technology enhancement, skill development and by creating conducive climate for the manufacturing sector. Addressing a meeting at the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) on Wednesday, World Bank Equitable Growth Finance and Institutions Chief Economist William F Maloney pointed out that Pakistan possessed the potential to boost growth to 8% but still its growth rate remained around 2.3%, whereas its neighbours recorded historic growth rates of around 17%. He said that the World Bank would assist Pakistan in fully exploiting its growth potential by linking its economy with the global markets. -Govt urged to make road map to boost exports to $30b Economic growth is the key to generate employment opportunities, counter inflation and steer economic prosperity, said Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA) Chairman Khurram Mukhtar. Speaking at a meeting on Friday, he urged the government to set a road map for the next four years to produce robust economic activity and boost exports to $30 billion in a bid to fulfil prime minister’s vision of economic prosperity. Terming entrepreneurs and the business community invaluable asset of the country, he pointed out that no meaningful economic development was possible without their involvement, co-operation and active input in formulation of economic policies. -Safeguard mechanism to be part of China-Pak FTA phase-II Unlike phase-l of the China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement (CPFTA), a comprehensive safeguard mechanism has been put in place for phase-ll. The agreement is scheduled to be signed on April 28 in Beijing and is expected to protect the local industry of the country, said Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, and Industry Abdul Razak Dawood. “There were no safeguard measures in the proper sense in CPFTA-I, now these have been put in place to protect the local industry,” remarked the adviser, who is accompanying the prime minister in his visit to China. Under CPFTA-II, a ‘sensitive list’ comprising 1,700 items has been provided to safeguard the local industry, as export access into the Chinese markets and import protection were hallmarks of the new trade agreement, Dawood told APP. -Pakistan to begin talks with IMF from Apr 29 Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will begin discussing the aid package for Islamabad from April 29. The IMF mission, headed by Ernesto Ramirez Rigo, will reach Pakistan on April 29 and will be in the country till May 7. The mission will also visit various institutions during their time in the country. According to the sources, the Ministry of Finance issued a notification to all relevant ministries and institutions and sought data from concerned ministries, including the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). Nine-month economic data is also being compiled for discussion with the IMF mission. -Pakistan’s New Visa Policy Gives 48 Countries Visa on Arrival Pakistan has updated its new visa policy which allows visitors from 48 countries to receive a visa on arrival. The Ministry of Interior has issued a notification in this regard which reveals that the new policy had come into effect from April 15. The policy has relaxed the visa requirements for 48 countries, including Brazil, Germany, Iran, Malaysia, Russia, Turkey, China, Sri Lanka, Australia, and Denmark. Travelers from the listed countries will receive visas for a period of three months initially. -Pakistan to Sign Long-Term LNG Deal with Qatar Soon The government is likely to strike a long-term gas supply agreement with Qatar in the coming weeks to deal with Pakistan’s chronic energy shortage. As the country is running out of domestic gas, it has opted for liquefied natural gas (LNG) as an alternative. An LNG supply deal was under discussion with 8 different countries over the past few months. -PSX gains 334 points to close at 37,130 The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) Friday witnessed bullish trend as KSE-100 index bounced by 334.60 points (0.91 per cent) to close at 37,130.63 points. -FAO trains 400 Baloch women in agri-entrepreneurship Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, in collaboration with the Australian government’s Department of Foreign Aid and Trade (DFTA), provided entrepreneurial skills and agribusiness training to 400 women belonging to three most underprivileged districts of the Balochistan under a project titled ‘Empowering women in Balochistan through agri-entrepreneurship initiatives’. The project, comprising on 24 months, aimed at empowering the Baloch women financially and addressing the issues pertaining to malnutrition in women and children by involving a large majority of the population in economic and livelihood activities. The project started in April 2017 and concluded in March 2019. “Women from the districts of Nushki, Chaghai and Quetta where imparted training of agribusiness and entrepreneurial skills,” said an FAO official while talking to APP on Thursday. “In next phase, the scope of the project will be extended to other districts of the province under a public-private partnership.” -Chinese heavy transport manufacturers to make entry into Pakistan The Rawal Industrial Equipment and Malik Group of Companies have signed an MoU which will bring manufacturing of Chinese heavy transport vehicles and other technology to Pakistan. The MoU was signed by Malik Khuda Bakhsh, Chairman and CEO of Malik Group of Companies and Farrukh Kamal, CEO of Rawal Industrial Equipment. Kamal, addressing the occasion, said that his company had been established with an eye on boosting trade between China and Pakistan. The assembly plant will be set up at Daudkhel, District Mianwali and will start production later this year. The plant is on a CPEC route and will manufacture heavy transport vehicles and other tech indigenously. Initially, the unit will help create 5,000 jobs and will also produce luxury buses, whose demand is set to rise due to increased tourism prospects in Pakistan. The products will include trucks, tankers, excavators, prime movers, earth moving machinery, and related tech.
2019.03.26 00:19 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 101.
-Export starts from SEZ – KCIP, Mehran sets milestone The exports has started from Special Economic Zone, Korangi Creek Industrial Park on Monday by kicking off the first auto interior parts consignment bound for United Kingdom (UK) which was manufactured by a tier 1 reputed manufacturing company Mehran Commercial Enterprise. The company achieved a milestone by transporting the auto interior parts to the port of Karachi. Mashood Khan, director exports of Mehran Commercial Enterprise (MCE) and former Chairman of Pakistan Association of Automotive Parts & Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM) verified that they commenced operation in January, exports has always been a passion of the company and it was a great achievement and honor for him and his organization to send its first export order after switching the production in the newly built unit at SEZ declared KCIP. Mashood said that the increase in exports will boost the country’s growth adding that Pakistan is treasured with talent and opportunities, all we need is to find the ways. ” Tracking the targeted market, Pakistani companies specially SMEs should be research oriented to achieve their multiple goals” said Mashood. “Pakistan has the potentials to meet global standards of Auto parts manufacturing, Although we are at initial level when it comes to products exports, over the years of experience, we have learned and initiated the decision of entering into exports. Hence, Mashood advised auto manufacturing companies whatever industry they belong to how ever small they may be, to explore the world for more opportunities. -Pakistan won't need to import oil after reserves found near Karachi: PM Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said Pakistan will not need to import oil after reserves are found near Karachi's seas. Speaking to journalists in Islamabad, the premier said, "We are hopeful of finding large reserves of gas and oil in the sea near Karachi. The nation should pray for this and I will soon share good news regarding this." "God willing the reserves will be so large that we will not need to import any oil," he shared. Similarly: -Oil and gas reserves may well change fortune of Pakistan: Imran Khan PM Imran Khan said that there had been positive signals in the exploration process added that the exploration companies would give good news to the nation in three weeks ahead. -Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves surges to $ 17.9 billion after China pumped in $2.2 billion Pakistan has received $2.2 billion from China on Monday, funds deposited in the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) account. After receiving the finance facility from China, foreign exchange reserves of Pakistan surged to $ 17.9 billion. The financial support from China will ensure balance of payment stability. Earlier, Dr Khaqan Najeeb, adviser and spokesman for Ministry of Finance, in a tweet on Saturday said clarified that the discussions with international partners do not entail any target level of exchange rate. -WorldRemit introduces zero fee on $210 or over transfers to Pakistan Leading digital money transfer service, WorldRemit, is offering its customers zero fees for transfers of $210 or over to Pakistan WorldRemit has introduced the fee waiver to further support its overseas Pakistani customers and maximise the impact of the money they send home. Pakistanis living in over 50 countries, including the USA, UK and Australia, can now send fee free, fast and secure money transfers to Pakistan directly from their phones to recipients with or without access to a bank account. -Government approves proposal to allow Hindu pilgrims to visit Hindu sites in Azad Kashmir The Pakistan government on Monday approved a proposal to establish a corridor that will allow Hindu pilgrims from India to visit Sharda Peeth, an ancient Hindu temple and cultural site in Azad Kashmir, according to a media report. The Sharda Peeth corridor, when opened, will be the second religious tract after Kartarpur corridor in Pakistan-controlled territory that will connect the two neighbouring nations. -Punjab government to make state of the art weaving city A delegation of small traders and small industries held a meeting with Punjab Minister for Industries Main Aslam Iqbal at the civil secretariat in Lahore today. Talking to them, the Minister announced to make state of the art weaving city on an area of one hundred acre in Faisalabad. He said that power looms will be shifted in weaving city as thousands of people are linked with this profession. He said that distribution of plots in weaving city will be transparent and on merit basis. -Pakistan to come under 100 rankings in Ease of Doing Business, claims BOI he Board of Investment (BOI) was optimistic that Pakistan’s ranking in Ease of Doing Business would show considerable improvements and come down below 100 when the World Bank releases its next rankings during May this year. “Currently the BOI has been working on evaluating the performance of ease of doing business in two man cities of the country including Karachi and Lahore, and reports pertaining to it would be presented in cabinet for discussion and finally submitted to the World Bank(WB) for approval,” senior official of BOI told APP -$230 million Gwadar Airport: New developments reported over CPEC Mega project The ground breaking of new airport in Gwadar city is likely to be performed this week. The airport would be built at a cost of US$230 million, an official from China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Secretariat Monday said. He said works of project design and feasibility of the new international airport has already been completed while the Civil Aviation Authority has already identified the 3,000 acres of land that is located around 26 kilometer northeast of the existing airport. The new airport would posses the international status which will be run under open sky policy, he said adding during the development process of the new airport, the existing airport’s capacity would also be enhanced by making it capable of transporting big aerolanes. -Bailout agreement with IMF to be reached soon: Asad Umar Finance Minister Asad Umar said on Monday that the government has made progress in talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), as the two sides managed to bridge the gap between their varied stances. “Today we are much closer to the IMF,” he said while speaking to journalists in Islamabad. “The position of IMF has changed, while that of the Government of Pakistan remained static.” He said during the talks, the IMF had informed that the terms of their agreements were much softer in 2008 and 2013, as the situation was far better than it was today. “The Pakistan People’s Party government had four and half months of reserves with it when it came to power, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz had reserves of seven months and 27 days, while the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government only had 15 days of reserves left with it,” he lamented, adding that the new IMF chief would be visiting Pakistan on Tuesday, but “not for formal talks”. -Pakistan to export $1bn worth sugar, rice to China Pakistan would export $1 billion worth sugar and rice to China during the current fiscal year, said Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razaq Dawood. He said that all arrangements with China in this regard have been finalised, adding that the Pakistani businessmen would export 0.35 million tonnes of rice and 0.25 million tonnes of sugar. “We have asked the Chinese authorities to also import tomato, wheat and yarn from Pakistan. The Chinese side is working on this and hopefully, we will soon receive good news in this regard,” he added. Dawood said that this $1 billion export would be separate from the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), adding that Pakistan would now be able to take advantage of the concessions from China, which it had given to Bangladesh, Vietnam and India and ASEAN countries. -Mobile internet service restored in Bajaur Mobile internet service was formally restored in Bajaur district on Monday. According to details, mobile internet facility, 2-G and 3-G were restored in the district. People of the area expressed pleasures over the restoration of mobile internet service in Bajaur, the first region in erstwhile FATA to have a modern internet facility. They thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan for taking a keen interest in resuming internet facilities, saying that restoration of mobile internet service was their long-standing demand. They also expressed hope that restoration of mobile internet service would start a new era of development in the district. -Cement exports rise 52pc in eight months FY19 Cement exports during the first eight months of the current fiscal year (from July 2018 to Feb 2019) registered a growth of 52.30pc to 4.65 million tonnes, as compared to 3.05 million tonnes exported in the corresponding period of last year. According to the data released by the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA), the overall cement exports from the country increased by a healthy 69.07pc on a yearly basis in February 2019. The industry exported 0.51 million tonnes of clinker and cement in Feb 2019, as against the exports of 0.30 million tonnes in Feb 2018. The southern part of the country, particularly the Sindh region, fared comparatively well as cement exports from the region increased by 185pc from 0.12 million tonnes in Feb 2018 to 0.35 million tonnes in Feb 2019. The local consumption in the region stood at 0.67 million tonnes in Feb 2019 as compared to 0.61 million tonnes in Feb 2018. -18-Year Old Develops App to Fight Street Crime in Cities Like Karachi “Success and hard work have no age and can only be achieved if you don’t stop”, says the 18-year-old Faizullah Arain. At such a young age, this boy may have developed the solution to Karachi’s crime problem. Faizullah’s application named “Crighter” will help people in these situations by giving them a chance to find the culprit. Not only this, but it also helps the users avoid criminal hotspots of the city. The application is freely available for all Android users. All you need to do is sign up and provide an emergency number. All the information will be sent to the emergency number you provide. This application collects five images, audio and location data and sends it to the emergency number. In case, you are not connected to the internet, all the information is sent via text messages. To activate the app, all you need to do is press the power button thrice, the application starts collecting data right there. -South Korea Accepts 15,750 Job Applications from Pakistan South Korea has accepted 15,750 job applications of Pakistani candidates seeking employment in the manufacturing sector, under the Employment Permit System (EPS) agreement signed by the two countries in 2008. According to the official sources in Overseas Employment Corporation (OEC), around 109,317 citizens had applied online among which 15,750 Pakistanis were selected via balloting process. -Pakistan Deploys New Air Defense System at LoC Pakistan has deployed new Chinese-manufactured medium-range air defense missiles in the cities and military bases alongside the Line of Control. According to media reports, the air defense comprises five LY-80 (HQ-16) surface-to-surface missile units and IBIS-150 surveillance radar batteries that are “capable of tracking and destroying a variety of aerial targets at longer ranges flying at low and medium altitude”. -Non-Filers Will Not Be Allowed to Buy Properties After March 31st Non-filers of income tax returns for the tax year 2018 will not be able to purchase properties till June 30, 2020. This was disclosed by a senior tax official on Friday where he also emphasized the need of filing by end of the current month. -Govt to Give SBP More Autonomy The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has classified Pakistan’s existing exchange rate as “stabilized arrangement”. According to a local English daily, IMF has asked the government to move towards adopting a market-based flexible exchange rate with a strong, transparent and accountable central bank, as in other emerging markets of the world. The PTI government is considering giving the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) greater operation and institutional independence to comply with the IMF’s demands. The existing exchange rate arrangements and possible limits of the government borrowing from SBP would also be clarified, in line with prioritizing price stability as an objective of the monetary policy, they said. In addition, SBP’s governance structure will be reviewed to enhance accountability in the SBP, while at the same time providing greater legal protection to the governor, deputy governors and the board of the SBP, added the sources. -CAA Resumes Flight Operations for Gilgit and Skardu Airports According to a tweet by Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority’s official Twitter account, flight operations in Gilgit and Skardu Airports have been resumed. It also reported that the decision to completely open the airspace for en-route Flights will be made on 29th March 2019. The recent Pak- India military standoff resulted in complete and partial airspace closures. Domestic flights were also affected by the closure. -ATC indicts Rao Anwar in Naqeebullah murder case An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Monday indicted former SSP Malir Rao Anwar and 17 others for the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsud in a fake encounter in Karachi. The accused present in the courtroom however pleaded not guilty to the charges framed against them while the court summoned the complainant and magistrate who recorded witness statements to appear till April 11, adjourning the hearing. The former SSP and his accomplices have been charged for the murder of Naqeebullah among the four men killed in a staged police encounter in January 2018 at Usman Khaskheli Goth on the outskirts of Karachi. At the time of the ‘encounter’ Anwar had claimed Naqeebullah, Sabir, Nazar Jan, and Ishaq were Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants. -Master Motor to start assembling pickups and vans in April Master Motor Corporation, in collaboration with the Chinese auto leader Changan, is all set to kick-start the production of light commercial and passenger vehicles in April. The $100-million investment venture, with Changan owning a 30% stake and Master Motor the remaining 70%, is going to assemble M9 and M8 pickups, and Changan Karwan van from the next month. The company also aims to assemble sports utility vehicle (SUV) CX70 in future, said an official, associated with the joint venture. In January, the company first imported the completely built units (CBU) of Changan Karwan van and M9 pickup. -Japan keen to strengthen Pakistan’s export base Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan Kuninori Matsuda said he desired a stronger economic relationship between the two countries and was keen to help build Pakistan’s export base to help it meet challenges. “I wish to upgrade our economic relations with greater involvement of the public and private sector for the mutual benefit of both the countries,” Ambassador Matsuda told APP at a reception hosted in honour of 10 Pakistani students, who were awarded the coveted MEXT scholarships by the government of Japan to help them pursue higher education. He said he came to Pakistan with three goals; the first of which was strengthening the economic ties. He said he wanted to further improve the quantum of trade between the two countries by involving public and private sectors for sustained economic ties. In that regard, he said Japan was willing to work with Pakistan to boost its export competitiveness and diversification, besides strengthening its manufacturing base. -Pakistan seals strategic engagement plan with EU Pakistan and the European Union (EU) finalised a strategic engagement plan on Monday, Radio Pakistan reported. Aimed at promoting durable economic development, the understanding came at the strategic dialogue held at the Foreign Office in Islamabad. The engagement plan lays particular emphasis on partnerships in the fields of trade, investment and energy. The visiting delegation was led by EU Representative for Foreign Relations and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, while Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi led Pakistan’s negotiating team. Further: -President Alvi invites EU to invest in Pakistan President Dr. Arif Alvi called for the European Union (EU) to benefit from the improved business environment of Pakistan by investing in the country. According to Radio Pakistan, he was talking to European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, who called on him in Islamabad on Monday. European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini said that there is a huge potential of economic and trade relations between Pakistan and EU which needs to be fully explored and utilized. -Footwear exports witness an increase of 14.55 pct The footwear exports from the country witnessed an increase of 14.55 percent during the first eight months of the current fiscal year compared to the corresponding period of last year. According to the latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, Pakistan exported footwear worth 80.292 million dollars during July to February 2018-19, against the exports of 70.093 million dollars last year, showing a growth of 14.55 percent. Among these, the exports of leather footwear witnessed a growth of 13.13 percent. -KP CM inaugurates Dargai industrial economic zone Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mahmood Khan on Sunday Dargai industrial economic zone during his visit to Malakand district, ARY News reported. CM Khan said that the government has set focus on the promotion of petroleum and industrial sectors. The inauguration event was attended by a large number of people and high-level officials. -PNSC inducts new vessel in its fleet: Ali Zaidi Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs, Ali Zaidi, on Monday announced induction of new vessel in fleet of the Pakistan National Shipping Corporation, ARY News reported. In a tweet, the minister said:” It gives me great pleasure to inform the Pakistani nation that PNSC has added to its fleet a MoGas Carrier LR-1 vessel on March 25, 2019. The ship named Bolan will help reduce the dependency on foreign vessels & save millions of $’s in freight. Another step towards self reliance!” -Non-stop and luxurious: Jinnah Express to be inaugurated on March 31 Pakistan Railways on Monday announced to inaugurate a non-stop and most luxurious Jinnah Express passenger train between Karachi and Lahore from March 31, ARY News reported. The passenger train will depart from Karachi at 3:00 pm (Sunday) and arrive in Lahore at 7:30 am (Monday), spokesperson said. The train will leave Lahore railway station at 2:30 pm (Tuesday) and reach Karachi at 7:00 am (Wednesday), added the spokesperson. The train will be comprised of 12 air-conditioned business coaches, two power plants and a dining car.
2019.03.22 22:01 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 100.
Here it is fellas the big 100. Can't believe we got here. Apologies for the absence. I waited a few days to allow for the donation links to the New Zealand Attack to garner enough attention on it's own. I thought that would be a bit more important judging by the issue it concerned than anything I could say. Daily posts from now on. Here goes. -International investors taking keen interest to invest in Pakistan: PM Prime Minister Imran Khan said renowned international investors are taking keen interest to invest in Pakistan due to investors-friendly policies and ease of doing business facilities provided by the country. Radio Pakistan reported that the premier was talking to 8-member delegation of 25 countries who took part in Islamabad Summit. PM Khan asserted that his government believes in providing profitable trade environment and opportunities to investors and business community. “Our policies will increase trade activities which will be helpful for job creation in Pakistan,” Prime Minister Khan said. -Adviser to CM refuses ‘increased salary’ from Punjab govt Awn Chaudhry, Adviser to Chief Minister Punjab Usman Buzdar, joined the bandwagon of censuring the move of Punjab Assembly related to raise in salaries of provincial lawmakers. In a protesting tone on Thursday, Chaudhry wrote on Twitter: “I refuse to accept increased salary from Punjab govt.” Endorsing the stance of Prime Minister Imran Khan regarding salary increment, he further said, “My sole salary goes to Shaukat Khanum already because I believe that our priority shud [should] be national interest and not increment in salaries.” Further: -Govt to review the bill raising salaries of lawmakers, says CM Buzdar Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar on Thursday said the government will review the bill passed by Punjab Assembly, increasing the salary, allowances, perks and privileges of its members. Speaking to journalists here in Lahore, Buzdar said, salaries cannot be increased by keeping in view, the current economic situation of the country. On Monday, CM Punjab Usman Buzdar had called on Prime Minister Imran Khan at his office in Islamabad. Sources said that matters of mutual interest, raise in salaries and perks of MPAs, development projects and other issues were came under discussion in the meeting. Update: -PM Khan asks Punjab governor to not sign summary seeking raise in MPAs’ perks Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed the Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar to hold summary recommending an increase into salaries and perks of provincial legislators, ARY News reported on Thursday. Governor Sarwar has been stopped to sign summary which would approve hike in salaries and privileges to provincial lawmakers, sources said. The premier has directed to re-introduce the bill in the Punjab Assembly and immediate review on life-time facilities to the provincial lawmakers. -PM Imran khan announces Pak Visa that encourages foreigners to come to Pakistan. -Citizens to be fined for littering in Peshawar In a bid to keep the city clean, Khyber Pakhtunkwa (KP) government has decided to slap fines on the spot over littering in Peshawar. According to the details, the citizens have been warned that anyone found throwing garbage outside or near their house will be fined in Peshawar. KP government has installed closed-circuit television cameras across Peshawar to catch people red-handed while littering. The Water and Sanitation Services Company Peshawar (WSSCP) has designated some places as garbage points and imposed ban on throwing litter and waste material out of houses. -PM Imran is Earning Less Than Ministers and Even Punjab MPAs Since he took charge of the country’s affairs, Prime Minister Imran Khan has been advocating austerity in the government affairs feverishly. However, advocating is not the only thing he has done in this regard. He has launched a nationwide austerity drive, cutting down on expenses of the government departments and all. Recently, another amusing piece of information has surfaced. The Prime Minister is earning even less than the federal ministers in his cabinet. Media outlets got hands on the premier’s salary slip according to which his income is less than those of the chief ministers of four provinces and federal ministers. -Crisis Management Cell established in Pakistan Foreign Office In the aftermath of terrorist attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand yesterday, a Crisis Management Cell has been established at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs , Islamabad. The cell will address the developing situation and update on the well-being of and latest information of Pakistani citizens living in New Zealand. -In a big economic success, Pakistan current account deficit registers significant decline The current account deficit (CAD) narrowed down 22.5% to $8.84 billion in the first eight months (July-February) of current fiscal year 2019, reported the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). The much-needed drop in the deficit became possible mainly due to a notable surge in workers’ remittance inflows and a significant contraction in the outflow on account of services imports during the period under review. -Pakistan to receive yet another loan of $6 billion: Report Pakistan and Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Friday agreed to kick off loan portfolio of $6 billion for various economic sectors. “The CPS for Pakistan from 2019-20 to 2021-22 will provide lending for energy, trade, competitiveness and other sectors during next three years period,” a senior official said. The upcoming CPS will kick in from the next fiscal year. The ADB plans to provide $2 billion lending to Pakistan every year for the next three years under the program. Pakistan supported an idea of combining sovereign and private lending under the umbrella of the ADB , the official said, citing a meeting between an ADB’s delegation and Minister for Finance Asad Umar. -Pakistan Railways generate Rs 3 billion extra revenue in past six months Minister for Railways, Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad has said that Pakistan Railways recorded an increase of 3 billion rupees in the revenue during the last six months. Talking to news men at Karachi Cantt Railway Station on Saturday, he said Pakistan Railways made immense progress in the last six months due to hard work of its officers and labourers. -State Bank support SMEs setting up, growth The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has come up with many incentives and facilities to support small and medium enterprises in setting up and their growth. For creating awareness about SBP’s SME finance policy and refinance schemes, the State Bank of Pakistan conducted meetings with manufacturers and exporters of cutlery, stainless steel utensils, water pumps and ceramics belonging to SME sector in Gujranwala on Thursday, said a SBP statement issued. -Government to announce trade policy soon A new trade policy will be announced soon, said Prime Minister’s Adviser on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood on Saturday. Addressing a seminar on ‘Trade opportunities in China, Indonesia and the United States of America’, he said that the new trade policy was being formulated in consultation with all stakeholders to make it more effective and fruitful. The event was organised by the Ministry of Commerce and the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) to maximise its outreach to the business community. In this regard, all registered chambers and trade associations from across the country were invited to give their input in these consultative sessions. -Pakistan’s medicinal imports rise by 9.74pc Pakistan imported medicinal product worth $656.092 million during the first seven months of current fiscal year, showing growth of 9.74 per cent, when compared to the import of $597.844 million during the corresponding period of last month. According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), Pakistan imported 13,781 metric tons of medicinal products during July-January (2018-2019) against imports of 597,844 metric tons during July-January (2017-2018), showing increase of 9.36 per cent in term of quantity. On year-on year basis, the imports of medicinal product witnessed growth of 1.71 per cent in January 2019, when compared to the import of the same month of last year. The medicinal imports during January 2019 were recorded at $82.115 million against the imports of $80.738 million in January 2018. -GDP expected to grow at an average of 5.4pc in next five years The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to grow at an average of 5.4 per cent during the next five years, with highest growth of 6.7 per cent to be witnessed in fiscal year 2022-23, according to preliminary figures of 12th Five Year Plan (2018-23). According to the provisional figures of the draft of the 12th Five Year Plan, the economy would grow at four per cent during the current fiscal year (2018-19), followed by 4.6 per cent growth rate in FY 2019-20, 5.5 per cent growth in 2020-21, 6.2 per cent in 2021-22 and 6.7 per cent in 2022-23. At average, the economy would grow at the rate of 5.4 per cent, according to draft of the Five Year Plan. The break up figures reveal that the agriculture sector would grow by 1.9 per cent during the current year followed by 3.2 per cent growth in 2019-20, 3.7 per cent in 2020-21, 3.9 per cent in 2021-22 and four per cent in 2022-23. At an average, the agriculture sector would grow at 3.3 in next five years. The industrial growth is expected at 2.8 per cent during the current fiscal year, followed by 4.3 per cent expansion in 2019-20, 6.1 per cent in 2020-21, 7.6 per cent in 2021-22 and 8.4 per cent in 2022-23. The average growth of Industrial sector is expected at 5.8 per cent during the next five years. -Singapore based company willing to bring $2bn investment to Pakistan A Singapore based company is willing to bring USD 2 billion investment in Pakistani shipping sector which would help create nearly four thousand jobs in the local industry. Currently Pakistan is paying four billion dollar freight to foreign ships which can be saved, Chairman of Global Radiance Group Abdul Latif Siddiqui said in an interview with The News. At present the country has nine ships, three tankers and six bulk carriers where less than 65,786 seafarers, 18,988 officers and 46,798 crew are employed. -IHOP to Open 19 Restaurants in Pakistan IHOP plans to open its first location in Pakistan by the end of the year, part of the American pancake restaurant’s efforts to seek new revenue abroad. The first branch will open in Karachi, and will be followed by 18 more across the country over the next nine years, parent Dine Brands Global Inc. said Monday. Nine of the franchises will be operated by Pakistan-based Gerry’s Group, and the rest will be sub-franchised. After a couple of dismal years, the chain has rebounded recently under Dine Brands Chief Executive Officer Steve Joyce, who said in a statement that international development is a major component of the company’s return to growth. Same-store sales, a key performance metric for restaurant chains, have climbed for the past four quarters. Joyce cited Pakistan’s rapidly growing economy as part of the reason to open there. -World Bank sees Pakistan's potential to be a $2 trillion economy Pakistan could become a $2 trillion economy in the next 28 years if it remains steadfast in its reforms and manages to reduce its population growth rate to 1.2%. “With sustained reforms, Pakistan could be a $2 trillion economy when it will turn 100 in the next 28 years,” said the World Bank (WB) Country Director Patchamuthu Illangovan while sharing the main findings of the ‘Pakistan @100- Sharing the Future 2047′ report on Monday. “The $2 trillion economy means an upper middle-income country where per capita income will be $5,702 but it will have to halve its population growth rate to 1.2% by 2047,” he added. -First Thar-coal based power plant starts generating power The first 330-megawatt power plant based on Thar coal was connected to the national grid after it started generating power from the world’s seventh largest coal reserves. This was announced by Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on his official Twitter account. “What a great day for Pakistan! The first 330MW power plant based on Thar coal synced with National Grid,” he tweeted. “Grateful to Almighty Allah, and humbled to have been able to play a small part as Sindh is firmly putting Pakistan on the road to energy security!” -World Bank appreciates PM Imran Khan’s vision for progress of Pakistan A delegation of World Bank headed by Hartwig Schafer, Vice President South Asia called on Prime Minister Imran Khan at PM Office. The delegation appreciated Prime Minister’s vision regarding the progress of the country especially his focus on economic stability of the country, human development and addressing the issue of stunted growth due to malnutrition. The delegation briefed the Prime Minister about various ongoing projects of the World Bank in various sectors including water supply, sewerage and waste management, transportation and connectivity, capacity building and ease of doing business in the country. The Prime Minister appreciated World Bank’s continued engagement with Pakistan and its support towards capacity building, infrastructure development and economic growth. -Mashal Khan’s father satisfied with ATC verdict in lynching case The father of late Mashal Khan expressed satisfaction over the verdict given by an anti-terrorism court on Thursday, awarding life imprisonment to two convicts, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) councilor Arif Khan in the lynching case. The ATC, however, acquitted two other accused, including Sabir and Izhar for want of evidence in the Mashal Khan lynching case. Mashal’s father, Iqbal Khan, expressed gratitude on the pronouncement of the decision which was scheduled to be announced on March 16 but was delayed until March 21 for some unknown reason. -Proton to set up first South Asian factory in Pakistan Proton will be setting up a factory in Pakistan that will be its first facility in South Asia. The plant will be a joint effort between the Malaysian carmaker and its local partner Alhaj Automotive. This was revealed by high commissioner of Malaysia to Pakistan Ikram Mohammad Ibrahim, reported by Bernama. The envoy said that the agreement between Proton and Alhaj was signed last year, and Proton sees big potential in the venture. “In terms of the potential of the Pakistan auto market, Proton feels it is big. That’s why Proton has agreed to work with Alhaj to build an assembly plant near Karachi in the Sindh province. This is significant because it will be Proton’s first plant in South Asia and the population of this country alone is 210 million,” Ikram told Malaysian media at the High Commission of Malaysia office in Islamabad. The media is in Pakistan with prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who is making a three-day official visit to the country starting today. The PM and his Pakistan counterpart Imran Khan are expected to officiate a symbolic groundbreaking ceremony of the Proton factory tomorrow. -Pakistan among top 20 gainers on World Happiness index Pakistan is among the top 20 gainers on the World Happiness index this year, ranked at 67th place, a jump of eight spots from last year's ranking at 75. The United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network's annual World Happiness Report ranked 156 countries based on six indicators: income per capita, life expectancy, social support, freedom, generosity and corruption. Finland was once again ranked as the happiest country in the world. Denmark, Norway and Iceland clinched the second, third and fourth positions, respectively. South Sudan took the last spot in the ranking. -Peshawar BRT project to be completed by March 23: Shaukat Yousufzai Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Information Minister Shaukat Yousufzai has said that the Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project will be completed by March 23, ARY News reported on Friday. In his statement, the minister said the province was lacking number of the buses for the project. “In order to examine the flaws in the project, the provincial administration was starting its test service”, the minister said. -ADB approves $9m financing for KP projects The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved $9 million in project readiness financing (PRF) to support the preparation and design of urban sector projects in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), which will support the federal government in accelerating the delivery of critical infrastructure in the rapidly urbanizing province. This is the first project approved under the PRF in Central and West Asia, which is part of a set of new financing instruments approved by ADB’s Board of Directors to help deliver projects in a faster and more responsive manner, said a statement issued by ADB on Tuesday. The PRF features simplified documentation and supports project preparation and engineering design activities that help ensure that projects are “shovel ready”, reducing both overall time and cost to borrowers. The PRF will support the preparation for the first two phases of the proposed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Cities Improvement Project (KPCIP). The proposed projects will help the cities of Abbottabad, Kohat, Mardan, Peshawar, and others in KP to improve their access to quality urban services and civic amenities through enhanced municipal infrastructure, public urban spaces, and transport facilities. -Pakistan may soon hit oil, gas jackpot: PM Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday indicated that Pakistan was on the verge of hitting a kind of jackpot in the form of discovering a huge reserve of oil and gas. “Just pray that our hopes and expectations from the offshore drilling being carried out by the ExxonMobil-led consortium prove to be true,” he said. “There’s already been a delay of about three weeks, but if the indications we are getting from the companies are anything to go by, there’s a strong possibility that we may discover a very big reserve in our waters. And if that happens, Pakistan will altogether be in a different league,” he said. -China to deposit $2.1bn with Pakistan by Monday: finance ministry Pakistan will receive loan worth ¥15bn ($2.1bn) from China by Monday, said finance ministry on Thursday. Finance ministry spokesperson Dr. Khaqan Najeeb Khan confirmed that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) would receive 15 billion yuan loan from China by Monday. He said that all procedural formalities for the transfer of the loan being provided to Pakistan by the Beijing had been completed and the amount would be deposited in the SBP account by March 25. -Pakistan, Malaysia sign five MoUs: Finance Minister Finance Minister Asad Umar on Friday said Pakistan and Malaysia have signed five memorandums of understanding in various sectors. In his informal talk with the mediamen in the federal capital, the minister said Malaysia has expressed interest in buying meat and rice from Pakistan. The Malaysian delegation also showed their interest in buying Pakistani made JF-17 Thunder fighter jets. In this regard, Umar maintained that the Malaysian authorities have invited Pakistan to attend defence exhibition, to display its JF-17 jets. The finance minister further added, it was also agreed to open branches of banks between both the countries. -‘Govt to restructure five public companies soon’ Petroleum Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan has announced that the board of directors of five public sector companies working under the aegis of the Ministry of Petroleum would be restructured soon. These include Sui Northern Gas Pipeline Limited (SNGPL), Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL), Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL), Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) and Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC). According to a statement issued by the ministry on Thursday, fresh appointments would be made on these BODs strictly on the basis of merit. “Provincial representation would also be ensured.” It said for the first time in the country’s corporate history, women have been delegated on these BODs. “Under new laws, every board shall ensure the presence of at least one woman.” -Foreign airlines to launch operation from Pakistan soon: minister Federal Minister for Privatisation and Aviation Mohammed Mian Soomro has said that six to eight foreign airlines are interested in launching their operation from Pakistan. Talking to the media after planting a sapling at Karachi airport on Monday, he said that Air France, Norwegian Air and a Saudi airline were among those carriers which intended to begin their operation in Pakistan. He said that because of providing ease of doing business foreign airlines wanted to start operations in Pakistan and talks were continuing with them. The minister said that the new aviation policy had been sent to the federal cabinet for its approval. -US ties with Pakistan are now very good: Trump After months of strained relations between Islamabad and Washington, United States President Donald Trump on Friday said ties with Pakistan were “very good” at the moment. The president made the remarks before boarding Marine One from the White House’s South Lawn. When asked about Washington’s relationship with Islamabad, the US president said the administration will be meeting with the leadership in Pakistan. “Pakistan – we will be meeting with Pakistan,” he told reporters. -Govt all set to revamp textile sector: Dawood Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood said on Wednesday that the government has finalised policy interventions for upgradation and value addition in the textile sector with enhanced market access. Addressing the 5th international conference on ‘value addition and innovation in textile’ organised by National Textile University (NTU) Faisalabad, he said that now it was time for the business community to play its due role in capturing the global textile market. He said that textile was the main economic strength of Pakistan but the entire textile chain had inherent problems of technology upgradation, adding that starting from ginning up to textile garments, the entire chain was working with obsolete technology. He said the government had introduced new reforms through policy interventions. “We are working on a progressive industrial policy which will be compatible with the emerging challenges and will be based on diversification and expansion,” he added. -Military contingents from these six friendly countries to participate in Pakistan Day Parade Preparations have been completed for the 72nd Pakistan Day parade going to be held at the Parade Ground in Islamabad tomorrow (Saturday). All three armed forces will take part in the parade. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad will be the chief guest at the ceremony. This year, the Pakistan Day celebrations will be special as military contingents from China, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Sri Lanka and Saudi Arabia will also participate in the parade. -Federal government releases huge sum of Rs 374 billion for mega projects under PSDP The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government has released Rs374 billion (55.41 percent) including Rs160.3 billion foreign aid for different development projects under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2018-19 against the total budgeted allocation of Rs 675 billion. -Top international tourism company to make millions of dollars of investment in Pakistan As the International Hospitality Investment Group (IHIG) is investing 118 Million Dollars in the tourism industry of Pakistan, the CEO of this resourceful multinational enterprise – Noor ul Asif, along with its Chairman, Alun Richards, held a meeting with the Chairman Board of Tourism, Zulfi Bukhari, Special Advisor on Political Affairs to the Prime Minister, Naeem ul Haq and the Chairman Board of Investment (BOI), Haroon Sharif. The meeting took place at the Prime Minister’s Secretariat in Islamabad to discuss the prospects of investment in Pakistan. Zulfi Bukhari assured the Chairman of IHIG about Pakistan government’s commitment to extend all possible support to foreign investors. -PTI government launches yet another initiative for overseas Pakistanis PTI government launches yet another initiative for overseas Pakistanis. Prime Minister's Special Assistant on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfi Bukhari inaugurated “Workers Foree Remittance Account” facility at the office of the Protectorate of Emigrants in Karachi on Wednesday. Addressing the inaugural ceremony, Zulfi Bukhari said it is important to have transparency and efficiency in financial transactions and this product enables transparent transactions and remittances . -International investment Conference to be held in Lahore Punjab Minister for Industries & Trade Mian Aslam Iqbal here Tuesday chaired a meeting that finalised arrangements for an International Investment Conference, to be held on April 12, 2019. On this occasion, the minister directed the authorities concerned to make the best arrangements for holding of the conference, which would be held on April 12 at Expo Centre Johar Town. -PTI govt clears Rs80b project for CPEC’s western route The government on Thursday cleared a Rs80-billion project for western route of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) amid difficulties in arranging funds for new schemes due to paucity of resources. The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) recommended the doubling of track on the Kuchlak-Zhob section of N-50 highway for approval of the Executive Committee of National Economic Council (Ecnec), according to a statement issued by the planning ministry. However, the project was cleared in haste as the Ministry of Planning had received PC-I of the scheme just 12 hours before its approval, denying it time to critically review the mega project. The Kuchlak-Zhob section was cleared amid uncertainty over the fate of another western route project, Dera Ismail Khan-Zhob section of N-50, due to lack of funding. -Weekly inflation falls 0.19pc The weekly inflation for the combined income group during the week ended on March 21 witnessed a decrease of 0.19pc as compared to the previous week. The Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI) for the week under review was recorded at 248.30 points against 248.77 points registered in the previous week, according to the data released by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). -PSX ends 147 points higher, breaks three-day losing streak Breaking its three-day losing streak, the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) ended the last trading session of the week in green. Foreign investors continued buying on Thursday and recorded a net inflow of $0.601 million. According to the latest data published by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank inflated by 8.81pc on a weekly basis and were recorded at $8.84 billion. The bank recently received $1 billion as part of a financial assistance package from the United Arab Emirates. Moreover, as per reports, Pakistan is all set to receive $2.1 billion loan from China in the coming week. The injection of funds is expected to increase foreign currency reserves to double digits after almost a year.
2019.02.26 01:26 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 96.
-LHC orders strict enforcement of ban on employment of children under 15 yrs The Lahore High Court in its detailed judgment in child workers case on Monday ordered the Punjab government to enforce strict ban on the employment of children under the age of 15 as domestic workers. Justice Jawad Hassan of LHC in a 22-page verdict ordered the government to take legislative measures on the issue.The court in its decision ordered constitution of special courts to ensure protection of the children employed as domestic workers. The bench also ordered formation of child protection committees for the children working as domestic help. The court ordered for issuance of yearly government notification about salaries of children between the age of 15 to 18 years. The bench fixed the maximum working hours for the child workers at three hours in a day. The bench also ordered holiday for domestic employees on 1st May, the International Labour Day. -Sikh pilgrims permitted to visit Pakistan for festival The government has accorded approval to Sikh pilgrims from India for their visit to the country and approved the schedule of Baisakhi festival 2019 due in April. According to Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), Pakistan will issue visas to 3,000 Indian Yatris for pilgrimage for 10 days. Prime Minister Imran Khan has issued special directives for the arrangements of Baisakhi Festival. Officials of Evacuee Trust Property Board have started preparations for the provision of traveling and medical facilities for Sikh pilgrim along with stay and food. Indian Sikh pilgrims will come to Pakistan on April 12 this year through special trains and high officials at Wagah railway station will welcome them. -Shenzhen University to Award Scholarships to Pakistani Students Shenzhen University (SZU) of China has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to offer fully-funded scholarships to Pakistani students. The said scholarships include doctoral and post-doctoral degrees. The MoU will also ensure faculty and student exchange for joint research. HEC Chairman Dr. Tarqi Banuri and SZU President Professor Li Qingquan signed the MoU at the commission’s secretariat. The MoU also provides for the establishment of the institutional linkages between Pakistani universities and SZU. The HEC chairman thanked the university for providing opportunities to Pakistani students for pursuing doctoral and post-doctoral studies in China. -PM Khan allows registered Afghan refugees to open bank accounts in Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday announced that he had issued instructions for registered Afghan refugees residing in Pakistan to be allowed to open bank accounts. "From now onwards they can participate in the formal economy of the country," the premier said, referring to registered Afghan refugees. "This should have been done a long time ago," Khan concluded. -SBP Announces Ideathon for Tech-Based Fintech Startups State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has come up with its own Ideathon for fintech startups, aimed at promoting innovative ideas in the financial system to achieve the financial inclusion of the country’s economy at a faster pace. The idea of holding an ideathon is a very encouraging sign, which should be followed by different regulatory authorities and public sector entities to promote technology-based initiatives in the country. Technology-led startups and enthusiasts will participate in ‘SBP-Ideathon’ to share their innovative ideas for financial inclusion through digital financial services. Successful participants will be rewarded and mentored by banking and technology experts to help nurture the ideas. -PM Imran Khan hints at new local government system in Punjab Prime Minister Imran Khan Monday said the government, in order to ensure welfare of masses, would introduce such a system under which local bodies’ representatives would be empowered and be answerable to the people. The Prime Minister urged the MNAs to visit the hospitals of their respective areas so that the provision of quality healthcare to patients in the public sector hospitals could be ensured. -AbdulRazak Dawood: UAE and Qatar ready for huge investment in Pakistan soon. Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industry & Production and Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood Monday said United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar were ready for huge investment in Pakistan soon. Foreign and domestic investors were showing keen interest to invest here as the present government was providing conducive environment and equal opportunities to them, he said talking to a private news channel. He said such investment would pave ways to further strengthen the national economy. Saudi Arabia was investing 20 billion dollars in Pakistan’s various sectors including power, mineral, refinery and others. This investment especially in power sector would help the country to reduce its energy costs, he added. -RCCI to organise ‘Business Africa Trade Forum’ tomorrow The Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) would organise “Business Africa Trade Forum” tomorrow (Tuesday). RCCI President Malik Shahid Saleem, while giving details, said that the major aim of this forum was to involve the business community to explore new markets for exports and to promote trade ties with the African countries. Different sessions will be held to discuss trade opportunities, scope of cooperation, exploration of new sectors and redressal of issues pertaining to tariff, banking channels and transportation, he added. “Africa is the second largest continent of the world with 54 sovereign states and a population of 1.2 billion with collective GDP of $3.3 trillion and imports market of around $500 billion, the RCCI president noted, adding that Africa, South and Latin America and Central Asian countries are non-traditional markets for Pakistani exports. -FBR Deploys Teams at Mega Malls to Catch Tax Evaders The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has deployed its teams at mega shopping malls and chain stores across the country to detect the tax evasion of multi-billion rupees. The move is aimed at achieving the desired tax collection target set for the current fiscal year. Currently, the FBR is missing is the annual target of Rs. 4,398 billion by more than half. This is probably the reason why the department has doubled its effort for tax collection. It has obtained the data of sale receipts from 2,500 retail stores electronically all over the country, but this is not enough. So, the revenue tax collection department has geared up its efforts to bring more megastores in the tax net. -Pakistan Infrastructure Bank expected to become operational this year Finance Minister Asad Umar chaired a high-level meeting on Monday to discuss matters pertaining to the operationalisation of Pakistan Infrastructure Bank (PIB) and Public-Private Partnership Authority (PPPA). Both these institutions aim to play a vital role in enhancing Investment-to-GDP ratio and spur overall economic growth. According to details, Pakistan Infrastructure Bank is expected to be operational sometime this year. It will provide a facility for long-term investment to commercially viable projects. It will also provide support to social sector projects besides helping in creating a long-term debt market. International Finance Corporation (IFC) is partnering with the Government of Pakistan for the establishment of the bank. The meeting on the occasion called for early finalisation of rules and procedures for the functioning of PPPA. Asia Development Bank is providing technical and professional support for the operations of PPPA, which aims to forge government-private sector cooperation for long-term development projects. -‘Six SEZs to be rationalised by June’ The government has given top priority to building a special economic zone in the federal capital along with three other SEZs, including Hattar (Haripur), Faisalabad and Rashakai (Nowshera), to facilitate international and local investors in the country, a senior official of Board of Investment said on Monday. “National Industrial Parks (NIP), a development and a management company, is all set to develop the planned SEZ in Islamabad,” he told APP. “We require around 50-acre land to develop the SEZ in the federal capital so that equal opportunities, as well as facilities, could be provided to both foreign and local investors.” Replying to a question, he said the government was working on a plan for the reconstruction and modernisation of BoI through the introduction of best international practices, which would consequently provide a conducive environment for investment in the country. “Applications for setting up private SEZs are being considered for further approval,” he informed, adding that private SEZs would be fully facilitated in line with the government SEZs, including tax exemption and one window operation. -Recent Healthcare Reforms in Pakistan Boost Market Outlook: Fitch Fitch Solutions recently published a report on how the recent healthcare reforms in Pakistan will boost the market outlook. The report stated that the re-launched national health insurance scheme will be broadly positive for Pakistan’s healthcare sector, with further reform momentum favorable for drugmaker opportunities. According to Fitch, The PTI government outlined a host of reforms for advancing public health in the country in its election manifesto in 2018. Prime Minister Imran Khan aims to ensure universal healthcare coverage and enhance the focus on primary healthcare while upgrading secondary & tertiary healthcare facilities. Reforms in Pakistan’s pharmaceutical and health sector are likely to be implemented over a longer timeframe, supporting the sector on its growth trajectory. However, opportunities for multinational drugmakers will continue to be marred by underlying issues within the healthcare systems stated the report. -Chinese Consortium Interested in Taking Over Pakistan Steel Mill A Chinese consortium, comprising Chinese Metallurgical Corporation of China Ltd. (MCC) and Donghua Iron and Steel Group, has shown interest in taking control of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) on a Build Operate Transfer (BOT) basis. The consortium is ready to manage the PSM for 30 years. The PSM Board is also expected to present a proposal before the federal government to hand over the steel mill to the consortium on a BOT basis for the said period. The Board of Directors of PSM has taken into account several options for the revival of PSM in the past few months. It has reached a viable option which is the transfer of the mill on a BOT or Public-Private Partnership (PPP) basis. Other options on the table include privatization of the PSM, a grant from the federal government, relying on commercial loans for its revival, and operating it through a public-private partnership. -Turkey finalising strategic economic framework for future investments in Pakistan Ambassador of Turkey Mustafa Yurdakul said on Monday that Pakistan and Turkey were engaged in discussions to chalk out a strategic economic framework for future Turkish investments in Pakistan, adding that key areas of Turkish investments have been identified, including low-cost public housing, tourism, technical education etc. Addressing a press conference after a prize distribution ceremony hosted by Pak Turk Maarif Schools & Colleges, the envoy said that Turkey has never wavered its support to Pakistan and its stands by Pakistan against any challenge it faced. “Soon after Pulwama attack, our foreign minister telephoned Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and extended support to Pakistan. We were active in OIC contact group on Kashmir too. Whenever there is an issue which is related to Turkey or Pakistan, the support has always been reciprocal and history is witness to it,” the envoy asserted. He said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would be visiting Pakistan on a convenient date after March this year. -Construction of Pakistan’s largest Shaukat Khanum Hospital commences in Karachi SKMCH&RC, founded 24 years ago by Imran Khan, for the underprivileged cancer patients, has now become the identity of Pakistan with regard to cancer treatment. Thirty-nine billion rupees have so far been spent in providing free treatment to deserving cancer patients over the years. And now, by the grace of Almighty, after a long and hard journey, the construction of Pakistan’s third and largest SKMCH&RC in Karachi has also started. This long-awaited project, which has been made possible by the purchase, at advantageous rates, of 20 acres of land from the Defence Housing Authority (DHA), will provide state-of-the-art cancer treatment facilities to people of Sindh and Balochistan, who will be able to access comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic cancer facilities under one roof, entirely free of charge for those who cannot afford to pay. Its construction will also help enhance healthcare standards and develop training and employment opportunities in the wider region as a whole. In line with its mission to ensure access to the poor, over 75pc of our cancer patients receive free cancer care and this noble practice will continue in Karachi as well. We expect to complete the construction of the hospital over a three-year time-frame, at an estimated cost of Rs6.2 billion, with the hospital planned to open in December 2021 with all the essential clinical and support departments one would expect of a facility of this nature. These will include Medical Oncology, Pediatrics Oncology, Clinical and Radiation Oncology, Surgical Oncology, Anaesthesia, Radiology, Internal Medicine, Nuclear Medicine and Pathology. The hospital will be equipped with the latest cancer care technology, including state-of-the-art diagnostic facilities, radiation treatment planning and delivery systems as well. -Peshawar High Court approves appointment of judges in tribal districts In a major development on Monday, the Peshawar High Court (PHC) approved appointment of judges in tribal districts post merger of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Federal Administered Tribal Areas (Fata). PHC issued notification for judges’ appointments in local courts of tribal districts, making a broader step for extending access of judiciary to the tribespeople. The notification stated appointments of 28 judges in newly merged districts including seven judges for district and sessions’ court while same number were approved on the post of senior civil judges. -Pakistan and Malaysia bilateral consultations held in Islamabad The inaugural session of Bilateral Consultations between Pakistan and Malaysia was held in Islamabad on Monday. The Pakistan side was led by Foreign Secretary, Tehmina Janjua while Secretary General, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia Dato Sri Muhammad Shahrul Ikram bin Yakob headed the Malaysian side. Both sides agreed that regular Bilateral Consultations are essential to monitor progress and achieve results.
2019.02.08 02:02 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 85.
-PM Imran to visit Dubai on Feb 10 Prime Minister Imran Khan is set for a day-long visit to Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) on February 10, the Foreign Office said on Thursday. He is visiting the Gulf state on the invitation of his counterpart Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum to attend the 7th World Government Summit. Heads of states, policy makers, business leaders and experts will attend the event to discuss current and future opportunities to improve governance through reform, innovation and technology. -You can now take the IELTS test on a computer With English proficiency tests becoming a requirement for most academic or immigration steps, the British Council has taken the initiative to make the IELTS test easier to take in terms of its structure. Previously, there was a written test that applicants took at a designated centre. Test takers in Pakistan will now be able to take IELTS on a computer, with the computer-delivered test due to be launched at test centres in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad from 24 February 2019. -Over $1bn foreign investment in govt’s first five months, PM Khan told Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday was briefed that the country attracted over $1bn in foreign direct investments (FDI) within first five months of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government. The report, prepared by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) was presented in a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan. According to SBP report, investment ratio during the same corresponding period of the previous government’s tenure was $426 million. Similaly: FDI increases over 100pc in first five months of PTI govt, PM told -Govt to Stabilize Prices of Daily Commodities Via Mobile App The government has decided to form a committee to develop a proper system to stabilize the prices of household items. The decision was taken during a meeting headed by Prime Minister Imran Khan today. The committee, headed by Defence Minister Pervez Khattak, will launch a mobile application that will update consumers with the prices of the commodities on a daily basis. The consumers will not only be able to discourage overcharging but can also complain against the shop owners selling low-quality substandard goods. A similar app was successfully tested by the Punjab government last month in Sialkot. -Navy seizes drugs worth $30m in Balochistan operation The Pakistan Navy seized on Wednesday about 2,000kg of hashish, worth over $30 million, during an intelligence-based operation in Balochistan. The cache of drugs was being transported via sea near Pasni, said a statement issued by the navy’s media wing. The hoard was subsequently handed over to Anti Narcotics Force for disposal. According to the communique, the operation was executed with “meticulous planning, constant surveillance and obtaining precise intelligence”. -FBR to Start a Door-to-Door Campaign to Catch Tax Evaders The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is going to launch a door-to-door campaign to expose tax evaders, a ministry of finance report has revealed. The report states that a nationwide door-to-door campaign is on the cards that will not only identify the tax evaders but will also help improving tax collection. “In order to broaden the tax base, FBR is set to launch a nationwide campaign, which includes a door-to-door survey for collection of information to identify potential tax evaders,” it said. The report states that the move will further help increase the tax net – which is a key in reviving the overall economic structure of the country. -Pakistan on Wednesday signed an agreement with Russia for offshore oil and gas exploration activities Pakistan on Wednesday signed an agreement with Russia for offshore oil and gas exploration activities, besides laying a pipeline to supply gas to the country from the Middle East through the sea-link. Managing Director Inter State Gas Systems Limited (ISGSL) of Pakistan Mobin Saulat and Deputy Chairman Gazprom International of Russia Vitaly A. Markelov signed an inter-corporate agreement, a Petroleum Division press release said. Minister for Petroleum Ghulam Sarwar Khan witnessed the signing ceremony between the two companies. -Faizabad sit-in: Elements propagating hate, extremism must be prosecuted, says SC The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday announced its verdict in the suo motu case regarding the 2017 Faizabad sit-in staged by the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP). The two-member bench comprising Justice Qazi Faez Isa and Justice Mushir Alam directed the federal and provincial governments to monitor all elements “advocating hate, extremism and terrorism and prosecute the perpetrators in accordance with the law”. As per the written verdict authored by Justice Qazi Faez Isa, the Supreme Court has ruled that any “person issuing an edict or fatwa, which harms another or puts another in harm’s way, must be criminally prosecuted under the Pakistan Penal Code, the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 and/or the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016.” -Govt to hunt tax evading Pakistanis in Russia, Turkey Pakistan has decided to approach Turkey and Russia to get information about assets that Pakistanis have presumably stashed there after known offshore tax havens came on the authorities’ radar in the wake of the Panama Papers leaks. The decision to approach the tax authorities of these two countries was taken by Prime Minister Imran Khan during a meeting that he chaired last week, according to senior officials of the Federal Board of Revenue. On January 30, the PM took a number of decisions to curb corruption in the FBR, discourage under-invoicing of imports from China and trace with the help of intelligence agencies people who had been named in the Panama leaks. Imran Khan also gave two-week time to FBR Chairman Jehanzeb Khan to take steps that must signal that the organisation is serious to curb corruption. -Despite hurdles, Chinese firm keen to take over K-Electric Despite a long delay due to bureaucratic hurdles in some areas, Shanghai Electric Power (SEP) is still keen to acquire K-Electric, which may prove to be a game changer in efforts to transform Karachi’s power infrastructure in line with international standards for a smooth electricity supply. Talking to The Express Tribune, K-Electric Chief Executive Officer Moonis Alvi, who took over the charge recently, said in case the proposed acquisition of K-Electric by China’s SEP failed, it would adversely affect the industrial and commercial potential of Karachi besides hurting investor confidence in Pakistan. -Country’s first male-only medical college opens doors in Jamshoro The country’s first male-only medical college is set to open its doors in Jamshoro. A notification issued by the Ministry of Health in Islamabad a few days back, confirms that Bilawal Bhutto Medical College (BBMC) will be allowed 100 seats for MBBS. Permission to establish the college had been granted by the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council’s (PMDC) previous governing body. The college is being allowed to immediately begin inducting its first batch of students. The college will be affiliated with the Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences (LUMHS), Jamshoro, while the 500-bed TB hospital being run by the Sindh government has been named as its affiliated teaching hospital. -Chaudhry Fawad Hussain has invited facebook to open its office in Pakistan to get advertisement business. Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain has invited facebook to open its office in Pakistan to get advertisement business. The Minister urged the media industry to initiate research to know effects of digital media on the formal media. He said the government has decided to transform Associated Press of Pakistan into Digital Service of Pakistan. He said the government is spending 850 million rupees on APP , but what an irony it is that majority of its staff is unable to operate an email account. -Pakistan Iran decide for joint patrolling of border One-day meeting of Pak-Iran permanent border committee held in Taftan on Wednesday and officials of both sides have agreed to enhance bilateral cooperation to secure the two-way border. Iranian delegation led by Col. Ibrahim Janti met with Pakistani delegation led by Deputy Commissioner Chaghi, Fateh Khan Khajjak in the meeting. Both countries representatives have agreed on joint patrolling to prevent drugs and human trafficking across the borders. Iranian officials appreciated the Pakistan efforts for peace and thanked for safely recovery of five Iranian border guards who were abducted from the Pak-Iran border. They hoped that Pakistan would try to recover the rest of seven Iranian border guards. Pakistan's officials assured them that all resources will be utilized for the recovery of Iranian guards at any cost. In the joint deceleration, representatives of both the countries made consensus to prevent drugs and human trafficking across the borders. -PTI government to extend broadband penetration to far flung areas of Pakistan Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui has said that government is committed to extend broadband penetration to far flung areas as it is the information technology era. Addressing a broadband contract signing ceremony at Islamabad on Wednesday, he said the ministry has achieved another significant connectivity milestone today by signing this contract worth 192 million rupees. The Minister said with such projects, Ministry of Information Technology and Universal Service Fund would continue to work towards achieving the mission of broadband penetration to facilitate the people in rural areas. -In a first, PM Imran Khan for implementing provincial finance award Prime Minister Imran Khan has stressed for strengthening the local government system in provinces in order to ensure equal development of all areas. He was talking to PTI's Members of National Assembly from Hazara division who called on in Islamabad on Wednesday. The Prime Minister also emphasized for implementation of provincial finance award so that the areas lagging behind development could be provided with sufficient resources. -20 New Buses for BRT Arrive in Peshawar As many as twenty new buses for the Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project have arrived in the city. In a statement issued late on Tuesday, the Provincial Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, Shahram Khan Tarakai said the buses would have a separate portion for men and women. He added that the state of the art buses would also carry a designated seating arrangement for physically challenged persons. -PM Imran unhappy with PTI senators for flying to UK in Business Class Prime Minister Imran Khan, while expressing anger over two of the ruling party senators for travelling in business class on their tour to the UK to attend the Kashmir conference, has directed them to return the expenditures incurred on their trip. The two PTI senators are part of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and among the 14 senators who have gone to attend the Kashmir conference, held at British Parliament, on the Kashmir Solidarity Day. Update: -PM Orders PTI Senators to Return The Money for Flying Business Class to UK -National Job Program for 10 million Pakistanis to be launched by PM Youth Program In the wake of providing maximum oppurtunities to the youth of the country, Prime Minister’s Youth Program has planned a comprehensive strategy on “National Job Program” to be launched in the month of April. The program was aimed at making the youth self-suffient and to empower them economically for their maximum participation in the country’s development. Abdula Rasheed, an official said that under National Job Program on Public Private Partnership basis ten million youth would be benefited through the programme. -Pakistan Iran take important decisions over joint border, eye $5 billion trade Ambassador of Iran to Pakistan has said that Islamabad and Tehran would open new border gates to enhance bilateral trade and people to people contacts. Mehdi Honardoost while giving an interview to Pakistan’s state news agency APP said opening the crossing points of Mand-Pishin and Gabd-Rimdan has an immense potential to improve relations between the two countries. He said at present, the two countries have a single operational crossing point at Taftan on Pakistan side and Mirjaveh on Iran side, used for border trade and movement of people from both sides. -Pakistan makes big offers to Iranian Businessmen Islamabad will issue short and long-term multiple-entry visas to Iranian businessmen and women, Pakistani envoy says. 'We have resolved the problem of visas for Iranian business people,' Pakistani Ambassador to Iran , Riffat Masood told a joint business session between Tehran Chamber of Commerce and the Pakistan Embassy on Tuesday. 'According to one of joint border committee approvals, each Iranian businessman or woman who holds a business card, issued by chambers of commerce, can receive a visa for six months,' Masood added. -Pakistan PM Imran Khan to make a key note address to World Government Summit at Dubai This annual gathering of heads of states/government, policy makers, business leaders and experts will provide an occasion to discuss current and future opportunities to improve governance through reform, innovation and technology, a foreign office statement issued here on Thursday said. Prime Minister’s participation will underscore Pakistan’s strong interest in the knowledge economy, artificial intelligence, green development and the importance of innovation for growth, it added. -Pakistan to buy Aircraft Carrier China plans to sell its first aircraft carrier, “Liaoning”, to Pakistan. This sale is expected to boost Pakistan Navy’s strength, help match the Indian counterpart and improve Pakistan’s military relations with China. According to the media reports, China plans to carry out a “large-scale upgrade” of China’s first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, and “sell it to Pakistan to compete with India.” -Russia to make $14 billion investment in Pakistan Russia plans to invest $14 billion in Pakistan energy sector which also includes a $10 billion project for laying offshore pipeline for transfer of gas from Iran to Pakistan, local media reported. -Board of Investment launches multiple initiatives to bring Pakistan under 100 Rankings in EODB The Board of Investment (BOI) is committed to improve Pakistan’s ease of doing business ranking to under 100 within two years to attract the international investors in the country. Main business centers of Karachi and Lahore play major role to portray better ease of doing business in this regards, and provincial governments of Sindh and Punjab are in better coordination with centre, senior official of BOI told APP here on Thursday. He said that time, procedure, cost and companies’ registration and rapid business process including other 10 indicators define the ease of doing business ranking at international level. Replying to a question, he said that Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has also decided to prioritize the two new Special Economic Zones (SEZs) including Islamabad and Baluchistan in total of five SEZs. Applications for setting up private SEZs are being considered for further approval, he said adding that private SEZs would be fully facilitated on the line of government SEZs, including provision of tax exemption and one window operation to further ease down doing business in the country. He said that BoI was working on 100 days' reform agenda with a deadline of March 20 for executing the 35 reforms to attract maximum foreign investment in the country. -US business groups offer big opportunity to Pakistan in $59 billion market] United States furniture producers have shown keen interest in Pakistani handmade, traditional furniture and underlined the need of further enhancing collaboration with the Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) to promote furniture business between the two countries. The delegation led by Gurjatinder Singh Randhawa called on PFC Chief Executive Mian Kashif Ashfaq here Thursday and exchanged views of mutual interest in enhancing bilateral trade in furniture sector, a press release said. Gurjatinder Singh said that there was a significant potential for promoting Pak-US furniture trade and further strengthening of investment relations of both the countries. He said only US furniture demand at the manufacturers’ level is forecast to reach $59.0 billion in 2021 and there is a great opportunity for Pakistani furniture manufacturers to explore this to maximal level. -Pakistan foreign exchange reserves witness rare surge The total liquid foreign reserves held by the country stood at US$14,885.1 million on February 1st, 2019, State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) reported Thursday. During the week ending February 1st, 2019, SBP reserves increased by US$38 million to US$8,192.5 million, said SBP statement. -Pakistanis’ assets abroad: Govt makes request to 10 more countries for info exchange Pakistan has made formal requests to 10 more countries under the OECD mechanism as well as Switzerland separately for exchange of information about those Pakistanis who stashed their assets abroad to evade taxes. “We have made requests to 10 more countries for getting automatic exchange of information and so far we have received details about 150,000 bank accounts from 29 jurisdictions under the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) treaty. We have also made another request to Switzerland for exchange of information in January (last month) and they are willing to share data but so far it has not yet been operationalized,” Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar said at a news conference here at the PID on Thursday. -Pakistan's economy rises to $313 billion: Report PRIME Institute, an Islamabad-based economic think tank has welcomed holding of first meeting of 9th reconstituted NFC hoping that the federal government and federating units would rekindle the consensual spirit of the 18th amendment and 7th NFC award for resolving issues at the meeting. In a statement, the PRIME institute said since 2010, economy of Pakistan has increased by three-fourth to $313 billion, whereas increase in population is just 17 percent to 207 million in 2017. It effectively means that per capita income has increased, though not to the extent in regional comparison, it added. PRIME Institute was of the opinion that the 6th most populous country required more fiscal devolution than less to spread the fruits of economic growth among broader population. -Pakistan striving to chalk out meaningful FTA with Turkey The government officials are in process of building consensus with their Turkish counterparts and other stakeholders to chalk out a meaningful Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The other objective is to corroborate with the close political and cultural relations that both countries enjoy. Sources at the Commerce Division, while listing steps taken by present government so far to improve trade relations with Turkey, said on Thursday the first ever Single Country Exhibition planned would be held soon by Turkish Pakistan Tourism Council along with Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry and other relevant trade associations. They said Pakistan’s exports to Turkey grew at a good pace and crossed $850 million in 2011. However, it started declining after the imposition of additional duties by Turkey in August 2011. The exports amounted to $323 million in 2017. -Pakistan, Japan mull to establish technology upgradation fund The Embassy of Japan charge d’ affaires called on Advisor to the Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood at Ministry of Commerce on Thursday to discuss issues pertaining to bilateral trade and investment. The PM’s advisor emphasised the need to improve the existing infrastructure of the fisheries sector of Pakistan, including the fish harbour at Karachi. Both sides explored the option of establishing technology upgradation fund, which could be important in strengthening the manufacturing base of the country. The progress on the decisions of Pak-Japan Business Dialogue held in December 2018 in Japan was also reviewed. Moreover, the modalities and agenda of the upcoming session of the business dialogue also came under discussion during the meeting. -FESCO initiates night operation against power pilferage The task forces of Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO) have initiated night raids to detect power pilferage across the region. The teams checked 701 electric connections in eight districts of FESCO region including Faisalabad, Toba Tek Singh, Jhang, Mianwali, Chiniot, Sargodha, Khushab and Bhakkar, and caught 17 power pilferage cases and issued them detection bills of 10,500 units. The teams registered cases against two power pilferers and submitted 15 applications for registration of cases. -Ghandhara Nissan working on procurement of plant & machinery for automobile plant Ghandhara Nissan Limited (GNL) on Wednesday said it is working on the procurement of plant & machinery for its automobile plant being set up under the category of Brownfield project. In a notification sent to the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), Ghandhara Nissan said it was working on the capacity enhancement of the plant to meet projected sales volume. Also, it informed the bourse that the manufacturing team had visited Nissan Motor plant, in order to familiarize itself with the assembly of Datsun vehicles as per industry best practices and to finalize the machinery and equipment requirements for the manufacturing facilities. Ghandhara Nissan shared engineers from Nissan Motor Japan have frequently visited the plant for the support of manufacturing preparation. -Trade volume between Pakistan, Sri Lanka surges after FTA The volume of trade between Pakistan and Sri Lanka has increased in the last few years after the signing of the free trade agreement, said Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan. Addressing a conference on ‘Enduring Friendship between Pakistan and Sri Lanka’, he said Pakistan is the second largest trading partner of Sri Lanka within the South Asian region. Sultan said Sri Lanka was the first country to sign a free trade agreement with Pakistan, which became operational from June 12, 2005. Around 4,000 items can be imported to Pakistan from Sri Lanka.
2019.02.03 01:56 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 82.
-NAB recovers Rs298bn in 13 months The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has recovered Rs298 billion under plea bargains in corruption case during the last thirteen months. The recovered amount has been deposited into the national kitty, according to a statement issued by the bureau. The corruption watchdog has established complaint cells at its regional offices while a separate cell has also been established for addressing complaints of the business community. -Samsung, Huawei and Nokia to Manufacture Phones in Pakistan Samsung, Huawei, and Nokia wish to start manufacturing phones in Pakistan. According to a local newspaper, the government has decided to formulate a new mobile phone manufacturing policy. M/s Samsung, M/s Huawei and M/s Nokia want to start manufacturing in Pakistan due to lower labor wages compared to China, well-informed sources in EDB told the newspaper. According to the report, this was disclosed at a meeting of Pakistan Mobile Manufacturers and representatives of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Ministry of Information Technology and Telecom, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and EDB held on January 31, 2019. Noman Khalid, Director PTA, informed the participants that due to International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) registration the local manufacturing of mobile devices has increased. -Foreign companies are ready to make a $3 billion investment in the commercial farming of donkeys in Pakistan. Foreign companies are ready to make a $3 billion investment in the commercial farming of donkeys in Pakistan, per officials. “We want to sign an agreement after thinking carefully because we do not want scarcity of animals in KP,” the official said, adding that during the first three years, the government plans to export as many as 80,000 donkeys to China. In a bid to boost the country’s exports and to earn much needed foreign exchange, Pakistan is expected export donkeys to China, Gulf News reported. -UAE opens first ever business center to facilitate Pakistani entrepreneurs A first ever business center has been set up in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to help the overseas Pakistanis in establishing their businesses in the country by providing rent-free spaces and training to the aspiring entrepreneurs. The initiative has been launched following an understanding between the Government of Pakistan and UAE-based Samana Group of Companies, consequent to the efforts by Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development Syed Zulfikar Bukhari who had negotiated with the UAE authorities during his recent visit. As per the understanding, UAE government would provide space to Samana Group of Companies to lunch its operations that would later accommodate Pakistani entrepreneurs there to initiate their businesses, official sources told APP Saturday. -Neelum Jhelum power project starts power generation: Wapda A detailed inspection of Neelum-Jhelum power project has been concluded and the power house has started generation of electricity as per schedule, a spokesman of Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) said on Saturday. The project was closed for 29 days from January 5 under the construction agreement for inspection, the Wapda spokesman said. After removing water from the tunnel a detailed inspection conducted, which found the civil works and electrical and mechanical equipment power house meeting the required standards, the spokesman said. The underground draft tubes, Bonut gates, MIVs, generation units, related equipment were needed minor repair, which has been conducted, the spokesman said. After filling the dam the gates of the spillways and the dam structure were also tested and found the gates operating satisfactorily. Presently, the water flow in Neelum river is 60 cubic meter per second, which is generating a unit of the hydro-power project and generating 242 megawatts of electricity, Wapda statement said. The project will generate 969 megawatts when it will run with its full capacity on availablity of required flow of water, the statement said. -Pakistan had positive non-resident equity flows of around $14 million for January Preliminary data available from the International Institute of Finance (IIF) reveals Pakistan had positive non-resident equity flows of around $14 million for January as per their daily tracker. After evaluating IIF’s data, it showed January 2019 marked the first time in a year that equity flows were positive at $14.78 million compared to +$93.55 million in January 2018. This follows major volatility where the flows were negative for the FY 2018, up until December. -Stock Exchange Bullish on Positive economic indicators The upward revision in policy rates, some business-friendly recommendations in mini-budgets, and inflows of foreign exchange have bounced back the bullish trend at Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), with foreign traders making their comeback on quite a positive note. Foreign investors continued to remain the major net buyers for the second consecutive week, mopping shares worth $12.3 million. The KSE-100 Index gained 848 points (2.1%) during the week as the market activity also remained elevated during the week with the average daily traded volumes inching up by 3.8% WoW to 175 million shares. -China has agreed to provide $2.5 billion in loans to Pakistan China has agreed to provide $2.5 billion in loans to help bolster Pakistan’s sliding foreign exchange reserves which will be deposited with the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). -Pakistan Railways announces multiple new initiatives for revenue generation Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad has said that time duration of travelling by train between Lahore and Rawalpindi will be reduced by half an hour in March. Addressing a press conference at the PR Headquarters here on Saturday, he said that track between Rawalpindi and Lahore was being improved. He said that the PR had collected Rs320 million as fine in a campaign against ticket-dodgers during the last three months, adding that it was a big amount and now the PR police had been given authority to take action against ticket- dodgers. The minister said that he would inspect Lahore-Okara-Sahiwal section tomorrow (Sunday) for the betterment of the railways, adding that Lahore-Narowal-Sialkot and Lahore- Faisalabad sections were also in a schedule of his visit within the next two days. He disclosed that Prime Minister Imran Khan would inaugurate Thal Express on February 12, adding that Thal Express train would run between Rawalpindi and Multan via Muzafargarh, Layyah, Bhakar, Kundian and Mianwali. Sheikh Rashid said that the railways would also introduce a VIP non-stop train named Jinah Express from March 30, whereas, another VIP train Sir Syed Express would be introduced soon. -Chinese construction giant makes offer for low cost housing projects in Punjab A delegation of China Machinery Engineering and Hanon Construction during a meeting with Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar in Lahore today (Saturday) expressed interest in investment in low cost housing sectors. -General Tyres to set up $300m Faisalabad plant General Tyre and Rubber Company of Pakistan (GTR), the largest tyre manufacturer in Pakistan, has planned to invest $300 million to set up its new unit in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Faisalabad. GTR, which was established in Pakistan in 1963 and is presently facilitating 20pc of the demand of tyres in the country, would be setting up the new unit in Punjab as part of its expansion plan. Talking to a group of Islamabad-based journalists, GTR Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Hussain Kuli Khan said the company’s board has approved the investment in the SEZ being established under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said that GTR has already purchased land in this regard. Apart from the new investment plant, the company, established to help meet the local demand for tyres, has also upgraded its capacity by investing a huge amount in the shape of latest equipment. -Spouses can work in same schools, Lahore High Court decides Top court of the province on Saturday struck down a notification by the Workers’ Welfare Board, which prohibited spouses from working in the same school, ARY News reported. The board had issued a notification back in 2017, which prevented schools from appointing spouses in the same school, citing the fears of ‘monopoly’. The high court ruled that the appointment of husband and wife in same school did not amount to a monopoly, and it is illogical to place such a bar on people. The court also said that such a notification was against the transparency, and reflected the incapability of the school owners towards administrative matters. The court noted that a prohibition like this affected employees’ capacity to work. Also, the board, through this notification, had violated Punjab government’s wedlock policy as well, under which spouses can remain posted at one station for an indefinite period of time. -PM seeks provinces’ help to boost food exports Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday directed the provincial governments to identify the impediments and problems in the way of boosting food exports. Chairing a high-level meeting to discuss agriculture and food processing in Islamabad, the premier said the federal government will extend all-out assistance to the provincial governments to fully utilise the potential in the agriculture sector. He said the promotion of agriculture is among top priorities of the government. He sought recommendations from the provinces within a week to further strengthen the agriculture sector. -45 pct Work on Kartarpur Corridor Phase-I completed: sources The construction work on first phase of Kartarpur Corridor Project has been completed upto 45 percent, quoting the sources ARY News reported on Saturday. A city, seven times larger than nearby Narowal will be constructed in Kartarpur and for the planned city 8,600 kanal or 43 murabba (1075 acres) of land has been acquired by the district authorities, the sources said. The Narowal city, however, spread over 130 to 150 acres of land, according to the sources. The district authorities have sought approval of the Punjab government regarding the acquired land. After the consent of the provincial government, the the federal government will pay the bill, according to sources. Construction of a road from Kartarpur Gurudwara to Zero Point of Pakistan, India border, is also part of the phase-I of the Corridor Project. -Govt wants to make Punjab hub of investment: Jawan Bakht Provincial Minister for Finance Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht on Friday said that the current government wanted to introduce Punjab in new Pakistan as an effective hub of investment. While presiding over a meeting to review the preparation of international forum “Punjab Investment Heart of new Pakistan,” Hashim Jawan Bakht said that by the end of March, number of initiatives would be introduced which not only attract the local investor but also grab the attention of international investors. According to a statement released from the ministry, he said that new opportunities of investment would be introduced to national and international investors in the international forum, “Punjab Investment Heart of new Pakistan.” The minister said that investment opportunities would be pointed-out in the small cities as well so that they can bring at par with developed areas. He said that before this Punjab government would also announce its next five-year plan. -Riffat Masood becomes Pakistan's first woman envoy to Iran Ambassador Riffat Masood after formally presenting her credentials to the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Saturday became Pakistan’s first woman envoy to the Islamic Republic of Iran, says a press release received here today from Tehran, Iran. As an experienced diplomat and dedicated officer of the Foreign Service of Pakistan, she has served in several countries, including the UK, USA, France, Turkey, India and Norway. She also has a native command of Farsi. -PM Imran Khan to announce special development package for Sindh soon: Imran Ismael Sindh Governor Imran Ismail Saturday said Prime Minister Imran Khan would soon announce a special package for the development of different districts of Sindh province. The allegations regarding halting development funds for the province were baseless, he said while talking to a private news channel. The governor said the mega city of Karachi would be given its due right and assured to complete its development projects. -Improved security situation: Sri Lankan team willing to visit Pakistan Sri Lankan High Commissioner Nooruddin Mohammad Shahdi said on Friday that after improving the security situation in Pakistan, Sri Lanka cricket team will visit the country. Sri Lankan people and government look at the friendship with Pakistan with great respect. Moreover, Sri Lankan cricket team former captain Rana Tunga and Premier Imran Khan are both good friends. He suggested holding an exhibition match between the World Cup winning teams of Sri Lanka and Pakistan. he said relations between Sri Lanka and Pakistan have grown from strength to strength over the past several years. “We will strengthen ties further through cultural exchange programmes,” he said. -Market watch: KSE-100 rises 313 points as investors buy bank stocks The KSE-100 index on Friday extended gains from the previous session and advanced over 300 points following the announcement of much-awaited monetary policy. Bulls dominated the stock market, pushing the index above 41,100-point mark. The benchmark index shot up following the start of trading, but the momentum eased towards the end of first session. Nevertheless, the index managed to accumulate more than 200 points. In the second session, the market saw a short-lived spike following which investors bought selected stocks, which led to a steady rise in the bourse by the close of trading.
2019.02.02 01:25 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 81.
-UK's home office concludes a report on the secuity situation in Pakistan, citing much improvement The United Kingdom Home Office has released report over security situation in Pakistan. UK Home Office declared Pakistan as a country where the state of security has significantly improved in 2018 as compared to previous years. The Home Office report on Pakistan’s situation, praised determination of security forces, especially Pakistan Army, saying that the military-led operations against militants were successful and the overall security situation improved compared to previous years. -Pakistan conducts another successful launch of ballistic missile ‘Nasr’ Pakistan today conducted another successful launch of short range surface to surface ballistic missile “Nasr” as part of Army Strategic Forces Command training exercise which included quad salvo on 24 January and single shots on 28 & 31 January 2019, the ISPR said in a statement today. “The 2nd phase of this exercise was aimed at testing the extreme inflight maneuverability, including the end flight maneuverability; capable of defeating, by assured penetration, any currently available BMD system in our neighborhood or any other system under procurement / development,” it added. The launch was witnessed by General Zubair Mahmood Hayat, Chairman JCS Committee, Director General Strategic Plans Division, Commander Army Strategic Forces Command, Chairman NESCOM, senior officers from the Army Strategic Forces Command, scientists and engineers of strategic organizations. -Qatar decides to recruit 100,000 Pakistanis Consul General of Qatar in Karachi Mishal M. Al Ansari said on Thursday, his country will recruit 100,000 Pakistan citizens by issuing work visa in all sectors. Speaking to media during his visit to Matiari district in Sindh, he told that Qatar has already opened its visa centers in Karachi and Islamabad to facilitate Pakistani workers and professionals. “We are working to boost bilateral relations between the two countries and looking forward to take advantage of Pakistan’s offers,” he continued. Last year in December, Qatari ambassador Mr. Saqr bin Mubarak Al-Mansouri announced that Qatar will give jobs to 0.1 million Pakistanis. Meanwhile, he committed to offer support for the education sector in Pakistan. “Qatar will provide education to one million Pakistani children who are out of schools,” he added. -Stop news….SBP raised 25 basis points to 10.25 percent State bank of Pakistan has announced the Monetary policy for the next two months. State Bank have raised 25 basis points to 10. 25 interest rate. -Gwadar Port as Asia’s Emerging capital campaign has been launched in Central London A new campaign for the Gwadar City has been launched in London. Private investment firm China Pakistan Investment Cooperation (CPIC) has launched a bus campaign in Central London to promote the booming port city of Gwadar in Pakistan as “Asia’s Emerging Trade Capital”. Zeeshaan Shah, the former Apprentice contestant and CPIC founding board member, has initiated the campaign. Shah also previously advertised “Gwadar - The Gateway to Emerging Pakistan” and “Prosperous Pakistan” on hundreds of buses in Central London, as part of the effort to promote Gwadar and Pakistan as a safe investment place. -$20 billion Saudi investment package for Pakistan, largest ever overseas package in Kingdom's history Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman will arrive in Pakistan on February 16, Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf Saeed Al-Malki confirmed on Thursday. Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf Saeed Al-Malki visited the foreign ministry whee he held meetings with the officials and discussed matters pertaining to the Saudi Crown Prince’s visit. According to the Saudi Ambassador, Muhammad Bin Salman will visit Pakistan on February 16. -Foreign exchange: SBP reserves surge 22.9%, cross $8b mark The foreign exchange reserves, held by the central bank, increased 22.88% on a weekly basis, breaking a five-week losing streak and crossing the $8-billion mark, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday. Earlier, the reserves plunged to $6,636.1 million, which raised concern over Pakistan’s ability to meet its financing requirements. However, the first tranche of $1 billion from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the last tranche of $1 billion from Saudi Arabia for balance of payments support pushed the reserves above $8 billion. Moreover, China and the UAE have agreed to provide more cushion for the fast depleting reserves. -UK denies India’s request to cancel event highlighting brutality in occupied Kashmir The United Kingdom categorically refused India’s request to cancel an event highlighting human rights violations in occupied Kashmir. The event is scheduled to be held at the British Parliament. Blaming Pakistan for ‘duplicity’, the Indian official said, on one hand, Islamabad talked about peace but it was “working together with forces which are pushing or fermenting anti-India sentiments”. The event is expected to be attended by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who is scheduled to travel to the British capital on those days. -TLP acting chief arrested from Charsadda The absconding acting chief of politico-religious party Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) was arrested from the Umarzai area of Charsadda on Friday, police said. District Police Officer (DPO) Irfanullah confirmed to The Express Tribune that Dr Shafiq Ameeni was arrested during a protest rally organised against the acquittal by the Supreme Court of Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman accused of blasphemy in 2010 and sentenced to death by the court. Dr Ameeni was wanted for leading a motorway blockage and an anti-state sit-in, among other cases relating to rioting and inflicting losses to the national exchequer, according to the police. -Sindh Business Portal to launch on February 20 Chief Secretary Sindh said the provincial government had eased the process to start a business adding that Sindh Business Portal would be launched on February 20, 2019. Sindh Business Portal would offer one-window facility to the business community, which would facilitate property registration and property tax payments. Shah claimed that due to the measures introduced by Sindh government, Pakistan’s ranking in the global ease of doing business had surged 11 notches. -Pakistan’s elite security agency busted international spy network: Report Pakistan’s elite security agency has successfully busted an international spy network in the country, a local media report said. A report published in a local daily has claimed that the officials from Pakistan’s security establishment, including a very senior official retired just a few years back, have also been arrested during the operation. The officials were reportedly passing on sensitive information to a spy agency of one of the most powerful countries. It claims that an official, serving in a Pakistani mission in a European capital, was also among the arrested ones. -With 3733 points increase in January, Pakistan Stock Exchange’s KSE 100 index bounced back strong in the very first month of 2019, closing the monthly return in double-digits at 10.1% which is the highest monthly return in 2 last years since Dec 2016. -KSE-100 crosses 41,000 on policy rate The benchmark KSE-100 index of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSE) added 313 points or (0.77%) closed at 41,112.71 on Friday. Market increased further from Thursday’s closing. Increase in policy rate was largely considered a signal to enter shortly in the IMF program, also a nominal increase of 25bps assured investors that the impact on earnings will be only marginal in nature and will have less of an impact on corporate earnings. -Malaysia’s telecom giant to set foundation for Digital Pakistan with $250m infrastructure investment A Malaysian telecommunications infrastructure services provider would invest up to US$250 million in next five years to introduce innovations and support faster, better and more cost-efficient shared network throughout Pakistan. The edotco Group has already invested US $100 million to establish and grow local operations and planning to invest around US $50-60 million annually for next five years to transform the telecommunication industry towards achieving digital Pakistan ambitions with smart solutions. The plan was revealed by Board of Directors Chairman Edotco Group of Malaysia Datuk Azzat Kamaluddin, who called on Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad on Friday. -Boosting agricultural sector top priority of PTI govt: PM Imran Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said that agricultural development was the top most priority of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government. Chairing a high-level meeting, PM Imran sought proposals from the provinces about reforms in agriculture sector and asked to submit their suggestions and recommendations within a week. The prime mister said that Pakistan would take benefit from Chinese expertise in agriculture sector. He asked the provinces to pin point the hurdles in the progress of agriculture sector and asked that how could we increase usage of technology in agriculture field to boost productivity. PM Imran Khan assured the provinces every possible support in boosting of agriculture sector. -Tax collection increases 3.5% Pakistan’s tax authorities in first seven months of the current fiscal year collected Rs2.07 trillion in taxes with 3.5% net increase compare to the previous year. According to the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) sources, the FBR has collected Rs2.07 trillion in taxes from July to January. The net increase compared to the fiscal year 2017-18 was Rs69 billion or 3.5%. -Large Chinese company announces investment plans According to the details, Zhang Chun, Chairman Board of China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) called on Prime Minister Imran Khan and announced to invest in agriculture and housing projects in the country. He briefed the prime minister about 1,263 megawatt gas power project in Jhang. -First ever cross border international Optic Fibre Cable Network established in history of Pakistan Pak-China OFC link is the first ever cross-border connectivity established between the two neighboring countries. This is also the very first time when well organized, high capacity cross-border terrestrial connectivity has been established by a public sector organization in Pakistan. Similarly: Pak-China fibre optic link activated for commercial use -Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank announces to Invest huge money in mega projects in Pakistan The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has decided to invest more than $1 billion in the infrastructure projects related to transport, urban and rural water, and energy sectors of Pakistan. Chief Economist Laurel Ostfield, in an interaction with media on Thursday, said that the bank was giving funds for sustainable infrastructure and cross-border connectivity, and to mobilise private capital projects in Pakistan. “In line with our priorities, AIIB is considering investing more than $1 billion in infrastructure, urban and rural water, and energy sectors,” she added. She informed that four projects under consideration included the $100 million Karachi Bus Rapid Transit Project, $402 million Rawalpindi Ring Road Project, $400 million Lahore Water and Wastewater Management Project and $160 million for the Karachi Water and Sewer Services Project. -Archaeologists uncover signs of a 4000 year old civilisation Chinese archaeologists have uncovered some artefacts dating as far back as 1700 BC near Khanpur. It suggests that there was a civilisation in this area long before the Gandhara civilisation. The relics, including pottery, remains of metallic tools, and stone items, point to a link with Harappa and Moen Jo Daro civilisations – the two cradles of Indus Valley civilisation. According to sources, the discovery was a joint effort of students from three Chinese universities along with the Department of Archaeology who have been excavating a historical site near Bhaloot in Khanpur for a while. -PM inaugurates ‘Pakistan Banao Certificate’ scheme for overseas Pakistanis Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday inaugurated ‘Pakistan Banao Certificates’ scheme to attract investment from overseas Pakistanis and to help strengthen the national economy. Speaking at the launch ceremony of Pakistan Banao Certificate initiative, the prime minister vowed that under his government, the Pakistani diaspora will feel proud to hail from the country. Under the said scheme, Overseas Pakistanis would be able to earn profits from their investment in certificates. -Razzak Dawood discusses steps taken for ease of doing business Advisor to the Prime Minister for Commerce, Investment, Textile and Industry Production, Abdul Razzaq Daud in a meeting with Sindh Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah here on Friday discussed measures being taken to promote ease of doing business concept in the province. Abdul Razzak on the occasion said the federal government was committed to cooperate with the provincial authorities in its efforts to facilitate investors and contribute towards establishment of a conducive environment for the business community. The chief secretary mentioned that efforts on part of Sindh towards the cause has raised country’s position by 11 points in the international ease of business ranking and that this has also restored the confidence of international as well as country’s business community. Measures adopted under the concept were said to include marked reduction in the time frame to procure commercial water connection from 61 days to 21 days and also expediting registration of property with Sindh Revenue Board from 208 to 17 days and issuance of Sindh Building Control Authority’s NOC within 30 days. -US consul general, Sindh governor discuss bilateral trade, business relations United States Consul General in Karachi JoAnne Wagner led a five-member trade delegation in a meeting with Sindh Governor Imran Ismail here on Friday. On the occasion, matters related to bilateral relations between the two countries were extensively discussed and it was agreed that cordiality between the two was equally beneficial for the region. -Expats offer business facilitation centre in UAE to help Pakistani entrepreneurs Business Star Center and Zamana Group of Companies, being operated by two overseas Pakistanis in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), have offered to establish a business facilitation center to help Pakistani entrepreneurs in the Emirates. They extended the offer to Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development (OP&HRD) Syed Zulfikar Bukhari during a meeting held the other day. The OP&HRD ministry has assured them of providing services required to launch the business center at the earliest, the ministry spokesperson revealed on Thursday. He said the youth belonging to Pakistani diaspora would be able to register their companies and small start-ups free of cost through this business centre. -Japanese investors keen to explore Punjab’s leather market A Japanese delegation from Japan Gloves Industry Association (JGIA), led by Tomokuni Company CEO Seiji Tomokuni, visited Punjab Board of Investment and Trade (PBIT) and showed a keen interest in launching their business in the leather market of the province. During the meeting, the Japanese delegation said it was their first visit to Pakistan and they were delighted to witness the hospitality extended to them by all the organisations they visited. “We are glad to see the technological advancements prevailing in Pakistan, they said, adding that there existed a great potential to develop strong business relations between the two countries especially in the leather industry. Earlier, PBIT CEO Burana welcomed the esteemed delegation and briefed them about the business-friendly environment in Pakistan, particularly in Punjab. Emphasizing the trade statistics that have been improving over the years, he stressed the need for developing strong business-to-business contacts between the traders of Pakistan and Japan. -‘Dutch investors to visit Pakistan soon’ Deputy Ambassador of Netherlands Josephine Frantzen called on Finance Minister Asad Umar on Thursday to discuss the investment plans of Dutch companies in Pakistan. The envoy informed the minister that two high-level business delegations from the Netherlands would be visiting Pakistan in the near future to explore investment opportunities. She also shared with him positive feedback from Dutch companies on the recently announced economic and business facilitation package, saying, “It was very encouraging for prospective investors.” Finance Minister Asad Umar on the occasion welcomed the investment plans of the Dutch companies, saying foreign direct investment was among the top priorities of the present government and that it would extend all possible facilities to foreign investors. -Pakistan’s first organic cotton bale harvested in Balochistan Balochistan has produced Pakistan’s first organic cotton bale, while the ceremony for its certification was held at Kot Sabzal, a local media outlet reported on Thursday. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the harvesting of the cotton bale was made possible due to the cooperation of Balochistan’s Department of Agriculture. Balochistan’s Agriculture Minister Engineer Zamrak Khan said the provincial government was committed to promoting organic agriculture throughout the province, adding that the government was paying special attention to Balochistan. He further said that the Balochistan government would be developing an organic agriculture policy soon. -Govt to Fund a Plant Which Uses Waste to Generate Electricity in Rawalpindi Preliminary work on power generation from waste disposal in Rawalpindi has begun. Around 1000 tons of waste from the city and its surrounding villages is regularly transferred to 600 canals of an open dumping point at Lusar adjacent to GT Road. This causes significant air and underground pollution. In order to overcome this pollution, the authorities have decided to employ this waste in power generation. -Faisalabad is Getting an International Air Cargo Terminal Provincial Minister for Industries, Commerce, and Investment, Mian Aslam Iqbal, has said that an international air cargo terminal is going to be set up in Faisalabad. He said that along with the terminal, the government will also launch a cargo train in a bid to promote exports. Iqbal made the announcement while addressing the Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHEMA) North Zone. He further said that the government is making all possible efforts to facilitate businesses which focus on exports. -Pakistan, Oman vow to bolster bilateral relations Islamabad wants to widen economic and diplomatic ties with Oman, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said. Qureshi, who is an official visit to Oman, was speaking at a joint press conference with his Omani counterpart Omar Yusuf Alawi after attending the seventh Joint Ministerial Commission meeting in Muscat on Thursday. He said that over 25,000 Pakistanis came to work in Oman just in 2018, adding that “Oman will greatly benefit from our human resources”. Qureshi said he and his counterpart had discussed ways to improve bilateral relations. -Ease of doing business: Punjab framing new industrial policy A new provincial industrial policy, aimed at facilitating small and medium enterprises (SME), is being framed to ensure ease of doing business in order to achieve 10% annual growth. Addressing business community at the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), Punjab Minister for Industries, Commerce and Investment Mian Aslam Iqbal emphasised that the provincial government was seeking to create industrial-friendly environment. Iqbal compared the strategy to the federal government’s agenda and stressed that the provincial leadership was following in the footsteps of the Centre. He announced the launch of one-window operation shortly for facilitating new investors. Earlier, the investors needed to deal with 19 federal departments and required NOCs from 26 provincial bodies for establishing a new industrial unit, he pointed out. “Following the initiation of the one-window operation, all NOCs will be issued under one roof,” the minister said. “If a department fails to respond within 10 days, it will be considered that it has issued the NOC.” -Moody’s terms mini-budget positive for export sectors oody’s – one of three big global credit rating agencies – has termed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government’s second mini-budget positive for manufacturing and export-oriented sectors, which will lend much-needed support to enhancing the country’s foreign income and curb the current account deficit (CAD). The US-based rating agency, however, stated that new budgetary measures weakened the government’s income generation side as tax incentives awarded to industries and the agriculture sector further toughened the challenge of achieving the tax revenue collection target of Rs4.398 trillion. Accordingly, the budget deficit is expected to remain high. “While the mini-budget will bolster the export sector, there is a greater risk of fiscal slippage and slower fiscal consolidation in the absence of additional revenue-raising measures,” the rating agency said on Thursday in a commentary on the second mini-budget which Finance Minister Asad Umar presented last week. -More than one million saplings to be planted in Punjab in spring More than one million saplings would be planted in spring under Parks & Horticulture Authorities (PHAs) in the Punjab during next two months, Radio Pakistan reported on Friday. This was decided in a meeting presided over by Minister for Housing & Urban Development, Mian Mahmood ur Rasheed which was attended by Chairmen and Director Generals of PHAs of entire province. Addressing the meeting, the minister said that beautifying the cities of the province is a priority of the Punjab government in accordance with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, and added that PHAs will have to play an active role in this regard. He directed that feasible proposals should be finalized for beautifying parks and construction and rehabilitation of green-belts along roads. The meeting also discussed various issues about the targets of upcoming tree plantation campaign and results of previous monsoon tree plantations. -Army organizes three-day free medical camp in Bajaur A three-day free medical camp for the victims of coetaneous Leishmaniasis disease was organized in Bajaur tribal district, ARY News reported on Friday. The camp was organized on the directives of Crops Commander Peshawar and Inspector General Frontier Corps at District Headquarters Hospital Khaar. A number of senior doctors and Leishmaniasis experts of Combined Military Hospital Peshawar provided treatment to at least 400 patients. Besides, treatment, free of cost medicines were also given to the patients, belonging to different remote areas of the district.
2019.01.23 01:39 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 76.
-Agriculture sector may get Rs35bn subsidy in mini-budget The agriculture sector is going to get a much-needed relief, as the government has decided to give a subsidy of around Rs35 billion on fertiliser in the mini-budget, which would be announced tomorrow (Wednesday). According to sources, a high-level meeting, held at the Ministry of Planning and Development on Tuesday, has approved a subsidy of Rs405 per urea bag and proposed the same for the federal cabinet’s approval ahead of presenting it before the assembly. The total amount of the subsidy or support price on urea would be over Rs20 billion. Sources said that the support price is being introduced for the remaining six months of the financial year so as to benefit three major crops, including maize, cotton and wheat. “Since there are not enough options to facilitate all segments of the agriculture sector, the government found urea to be the only product that has direct linkages with every crop and segment of the sector. In order to give equal benefit to farmers/growers and ultimately traders and exporters, the government has decided to subsidise fertiliser,” said an official. -New Car Makers to Invest $1.5 Billion in Pakistani Auto Sector The leading automotive companies of Pakistan have committed to bring new investment of $1.5 billion in the auto industry of Pakistan. Amir Allahwala, former Chairman Pakistan Association of Automotive Parts & Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM), made this statement while briefing the Senate Committee on Industries and Production on Tuesday. He informed the committee that eight new car makers have already entered the Pakistani market with an investment of $1.5 billion while another investment of as much amount is also expected in the near future. Under the investment plan, the new plants have been established to manufacture glasses and windscreens of vehicles. Moreover, another plant to make alloy wheels is being set up in the country. The committee was informed that over the past five years, Pakistan auto industry had witnessed phenomenal growth as in 2013-14, Pakistan produced 116,000 units of cars, which reached 218,372 units in 2017-18. -Top Qatari Business groups and leaders meet PM Imran Khan in Doha Chairmen and senior representatives of various Qatari business organizations and groups separately met Prime Minister Imran Khan here on Tuesday and discussed matters of bilateral and mutual interest. Update: Qatari businessmen association hints at mega investment in Pakistan Chairman of Qatar Businessmen Association Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Bin Faisal Al-Thani has hinted at mega investment in Pakistan. adding that Qatari businessmen are keen to invest in Pakistan in diverse areas. He said investment areas include hospitality, large-scale manufacturing, transportation and food production. Both sides expressed the resolve to increase imports from Pakistan and providing a bilateral framework of trade which will enhance Pakistani exports to Qatar. Update: Huge investment offers from Qatar includes power plants, PIA, LNG and Much More Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has revealed the details of the huge investment offers from Qatar. He said that Qatar would buy two gas power plants from Pakistan and would build two other power plants in the country. Talking to ARY News correspondent, Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that Qatar would play key role in the revival of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) and would financially support the national flag carrier. He said that Doha was interested in investment in agriculture sector pertaining to processing field in Pakistan.The foreign minister said that a delegation of Qatari business community would arrive in Pakistan to explore the investment opportunities in the country. As a goodwill gesture, Qatar had lifted ban on rice import from Pakistan, Qureshi concluded. Update: -Sikh Community in Qatar called on PM Imran Khan, lauded PM Khan's initiative Representatives of the Sikh community called on PM and thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan for the groundbreaking of the Kartapur Corridor. -ITP Forms Special Squad to Control Traffic Lane Violations Islamabad Traffic Police (ITP) has formed special squads to control lane violations and to ensure the smooth flow of traffic in the capital city. The decision to constitute special teams was taken during a meeting with Senior Superintendent of ITP Farrukh Saeed in the chair. The meeting, which was attended by SP (Traffic) Khalid Rasheed, all heads of traffic zones and Inspectors, decided to take immediate steps to maintain the traffic discipline and avoid lane violations to prevent accidents and ensure smooth traffic flow. SSP Farrukh Saeed also directed the department’s education team to make road surveys and create awareness among travelers regarding the disadvantages of lane violation which cause accidents. -Government vows to bring agriculture sector reforms in Pakistan Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms and Statistics Division Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar says special emphasis will be laid on developing and modernizing agriculture sector in the next five year plan. Chairing a consultative meeting on Agriculture Sector Development in Islamabad today (Tuesday), he said both short and long term strategies will be devised to enhance agriculture growth and its contribution to the country's GDP. The Minister said agriculture sector was neglected in the last plan and its growth remained dismal during the last five years which is evident from the fact that almost all targets in this area were missed. -Govt initiates plans to restructure PIA, Senate told Aviation Division Minister Muhammad Mian Soomro on Tuesday informed the Senate that process regarding the restructuring of Pakistan International Airline (PIA) has been initiated with an aim to improve the standard of the national flag carrier. The minister said that effective security measures have been adopted to stop suspicious activities and to control smuggling at airports. In a written reply, he said that PIA had been operating flights to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, from Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar during the ‘Summer Schedule 2017’. However, he added, the airline had abandoned its operations from Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar during ‘Winter Schedule 2017-18’ and is operating from Karachi only. He said that the airline keeps reviewing its operating routes in accordance with market conditions and take decisions on the closure of existing routes and the opening of new routes after taking into account its viability. He said the airline also plans to terminate around 200 extra and ghost employees. -Army, PAF teams rescue stranded tourists in Nathia Gali Rescue teams from the Pakistan Army and the Pakistan Air Force, along with members of the civil administration, rescued tourists trapped in Nathia Gali’s Tauheedabad area after heavy snowfall blocked access routes. An operation was conducted in the wee hours of Monday night and all the stranded tourists were rescued and the tourists were shifted to safe places in Murree and Kalabagh, said a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). A rescue team each of Pakistan Army and PAF, carrying food and medicines, was sent to the area in order to help the civil administration in carrying out the rescue operation. -Pakistan to sell turnaround story to lure investors As the world’s most rich and powerful businesses and political leaders gather in Davos, Pakistan will showcase peace in Balochistan on the sidelines of annual World Economic Forum (WEF) meetings. The four-day gathering of the global elite will begin today (Tuesday) with the theme of “Globalisation 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”. This year, over 60 heads of state or government, 1,900 business leaders, over 200 media leaders from around the world and hundreds of representatives from the civil society, young generation, technologists and the world’s top minds are attending the Davos 2019 meeting. On Tuesday, the chief minister of Balochistan will speak about economic opportunities and dividends of peace during a session being arranged at the picturesque Shatzalp Restaurant. -K-P gets its first female ombudsperson Rukhshanda Naz, a human rights activist, has been appointed as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s first woman ombudsperson. Naz has been given the post to stop harassment of women in public and private institutions, according to a notification issued by the Department of Social Welfare and Women Empowerment. She will serve as the provincial ombudsperson for a three-year term. Sources say that the decision to appoint her was made during a provincial cabinet meeting on Tuesday. -PTI government to introduce Judicial Reforms, Courts will be bound to decide cases in one year time Prime Minister's Special Assistant on Media, Iftikhar Durrani has said that the government would table proposed judicial reforms in the parliament to improve efficiency of judicial system and make amendments in civil law. Talking to private news channel, he said the main objective of this amendment is to provide rapid justice to the public. Iftikhar Durrani said courts will be bound to decide cases within one year after the introduction of reforms. -PSX gains 358 points on mini-budget optimism The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) piled up gains for another session as the prime minister is currently on a visit to Qatar. According to media reports, the premier is expected to seek reduced price and deferred payment terms for the import of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The rise was also triggered by investors and analysts anticipating a reduction in taxes across different sectors in the mini-budget, which would be announced tomorrow (Wednesday). The KSE 100 index rallied 415.45 points to 39,959.22 during the day before it settled higher by 358.44 points at 39,901.21. The index has gained 5.02pc till date during the year. -PSX likely to go up by over 1500 points after tax relief The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) has gradually moved up a net 1,000 points since premier Imran Khan assured stockbrokers that the government would amend relevant laws to give a fresh impetus to the market sooner rather than later. With preparation for the mini-budget, which is due on January 23, in full swing in Islamabad, the stockbrokers speculate the good days are set to return as budget leakages suggest the government is ready to announce what it promised in December 2018. “As far as we know, the government has accepted almost all our proposals, which will be made part of the forthcoming mini-budget,” PSX Stockbrokers Association General Secretary Muhammad Adil Ghaffar told The Express Tribune. However, “we don’t know what will be the final announcement.” -France to provide soft loan for Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit Project France will provide one hundred and thirty million Euros soft loan for Peshawar Sustainable Bus Rapid Transit Corridor Project. Secretary of Economic Affairs Division Noor Ahmed, Ambassador of France Marc Baréty and Jacky Amprou , Country Director of the French Agency for Development signed an agreement in this connection in Islamabad on Tuesday. The project will provide safe, efficient and well integrated mass transit system improving energy efficiency and air quality through reduction of Green House Gas emissions. Similarly: Govt takes Rs20.5bn French loan to complete Peshawar metro project -Pakistan, UAE sign $3 billion balance-of-payments support package The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Tuesday has inked the $3 billion balance-of-payments support package for Pakistan which is expected to “enhance liquidity and monetary reserves of foreign currency” at the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). From Pakistani side, State Bank Governor Tariq Bajwa signed on the agreement while the chairman of Abu Dhabi Development Fund represented the Emirati side. This package “to support the financial and monetary policy of the country” was announced late last year. According to the agreement, the UAE will transfer $1b to Pakistan in coming days while remaining $2b will be paid to Pakistan in two installments within next two weeks. Update: UAE Approves a $6.2 Billion Support Package for Pakistan United Arab Emirates (UAE) has approved a 6.2 billion dollar support package for Pakistan. The move is expected to boost the country’s foreign exchange reserves in the coming months. The deal reportedly includes cash injection of $3 billion in three installments and oil supply of $3.2 billion on deferred payments. -Pakistan Army arrests suspected suicide bomber along with suicide jacket A terrorist along with a suicide jacket was arrested on Tuesday by the Pakistan Army in Peshawar. According to Inter-Services Public Relations, security forces conducted an intelligence based operation (IBO) as part of the ongoing operation Radd ul Fassad in Tarnab Farm, Jhagra which is located 13km North East of Peshawar. Last week, the army had killed four Tehreek-Taliban Pakistan terrorists in Hangu. -Court sends Khadim Rizvi, others to jail on judicial remand An Anti-Terrorism Court on Tuesday sent chief of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) Khadim Hussain Rizvi and other five accused to jail on judicial remand, ARY News reported. Six TLP leaders including Rizvi were produced before the ATC Judge Sajjad Ahmed today. The government counsel pleaded to the court for sending the accused to jail. The judge sent the six accused to jail on judicial remand. Stringent security measures were took at the special court on production of the six accused. -Punjab government to setup Waste to Energy plants across the province Senior Minister Punjab Abdul Aleem Khan has directed to immediately start Waste to Energy Projects in six major cities of Punjab and complete them within one year. These cities include Lahore, Rawalpindi, Multan, Faisalabad, Gujranwala and Sialkot while Islamabad will be added specially with Rawalpindi and Punjab Government will also gift one project to KPK Government for Peshawar. He said these plants will replace dumping sites where garbage will produce electricity, gases and other usable products. He said that these Waste to Energy Projects will be part of Clean & Green Punjab campaign for which long term planning has been evolved. He said that after these six cities other urban units will also be included in this project and Waste to Energy Projects will be carry forwarded to each district of Punjab. -Mini budget expected to bring several incentives and reliefs for business community: Report Mini budget is expected to bring forth major relief in terms of downward revisions in four import slabs by 1% and eliminating regulatory duty on 150 to 250 items via the forthcoming supplementary finance bill. According to the top brass at the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), the mini-budget will see the proclamation of execution on five-year Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2018-2019 to 2023-2024 in a segmented manner. -‘Sibi-Harnai railway route to be opened in three months’ Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed said on Tuesday that concrete steps would be taken to open Sibi-Harnai railway route in the next three months. Responding to a calling attention notice of Senator Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar in the Senate. The Sibi-Harnai railway route was closed after militants blew up ten bridges in 2006. He said that he had requested the Balochistan chief minister to provide complete security to the railway route, as it would be impossible to open it otherwise. He added that only one-month renovation work was left on the 137-kilometer route. The minister informed the Senate that his ministry had reduced the fare of trains. The minister said the number of freight trains would be increased from 10 to 20, adding that two freight trains were given to the private sector so as to facilitate the business community. -KP unveils Rs100.750 million package for sugarcane growers Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Agriculture Department (KP) has unveiled Rs100.750 million incentives package for sugarcane growers of the province to increase per acre’s production besides providing financial support to timely counter diseases in wake of climate change challenges. Officials in Agriculture Department KP told APP on Sunday that these incentives would be given to sugarcane growers aimed at to increase ‘Gur and Sugar production besides financially facilitating poor farmers in all districts of the province. The incentives will be provided to the farmers in the shape of nurseries, kits, machines and technical support to increase and protect their crops in wake of challenges posed by climate change and global warming. -Exploration And Production: Govt to offer 10 new blocks Following a study which made startling revelations about the fast depletion of existing hydrocarbon reserves in the country, the Petroleum Division has devised a strategy to reinvigorate oil and gas exploration activities by awarding additional blocks and providing several incentives for both offshore and onshore drilling. “On November 26, 2018, 10 new exploration blocks were awarded through open bidding,” officials recalled while talking to APP. “Ten more new blocks will also be put up for bidding in the first quarter of 2019.” According to data from the recent study, it is feared that existing deposits would further deplete by 60% by the end of 2027. Moreover, it underlined the need for raising the exploration activities in potential areas on a war footing.
2019.01.19 12:57 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 73.
-Current account deficit shrinks by 4.4pc The government found another reason to sigh with relief on Thursday as the crucial current account deficit (CAD) slipped slightly by 4.4 per cent to $7.98 billion, driven by a fourth quarter decline of 10 per cent, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). The CAD lies at the heart of the economy’s difficulties since it is primarily responsible to draining the foreign exchange reserves that have fallen to slightly more than one month’s import cover since hitting a peak of 5 months import cover in October 2016. Last year the CAD hit a record high of $18.619bn, implying loss of reserves at roughly $1.5bn per month. The improvement in the CAD owed itself almost entirely to a $1bn rise in workers remittances during the period under review. All other indicators — exports, imports and the overall trade balance — remained more or less static. Contrary to the data from the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics released last week, the SBPs read out of the trade deficit showed no change from last year in the July-Dec period. Last weeks PBS data had showed a 5pc fall in the trade deficit for the first half of the fiscal year over the same period last year. -Man sentenced to death by Lahore's gender-based violence court for raping medical student A special Lahore court set up to deal with gender-based violence on Friday sentenced to death a man for the rape of a female medical student. Announcing the court's first sexual violence-related verdict of the year, additional sessions judge Rehmat Ali also handed the convict Waqas Khalid a fine of Rs0.5m. Khalid has been sentenced to death under Section 376(2) (punishment of rape) of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC). The judge also announced life imprisonment for the convict, under Section 366 (kidnapping, abducting or inducing woman to compel her marriage) of the PPC. -Pitbull & Junoon to Perform at PSL 2019’s Star-Studded Opening Ceremony PSL management has gone a step further and invited Pitbull, a sensation on the international stage, alongside one of Pakistan’s most loved band, Junoon. A Euro-Caribbean vocal group, Boney M, are also confirmed to perform in the glittering opening ceremony of the 4th edition of Pakistan’s domestic competition. The ceremony, which is scheduled for 14th February at 8 pm at the Dubai International Stadium, also includes other key performers such as Fawad Khan, Young Desi, Aima Baig, and Shuja Haider. Following the star-studded opening ceremony, defending champions Islamabad United will take on Lahore Qalanders in the inaugural match of PSL 2019. -Canada is ready to work with Pakistan business community: Wendy Gilmour The High Commissioner of Canada, H.E. Wendy Gilmour and her team visited the Pakistan Stock Exchange to open the trading session with the gong ceremony. Chairman of the Board, Sulaiman Mehdi, Managing Director, Richard Morin; Board Members Ahmed Chinoy and Shehzad Chamdia, and senior management of Pakistan Stock Exchange received the distinguished guests and led them to the Trading Hall for the ceremony. Welcoming the guests, the PSX team apprised Ms. Gilmour and her team about the role of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) in developing the capital market and the macro economic impact on the Capital Market. Opening the trading day with the gong ceremony, the Canadian High Commissioner thanked the PSX team for inviting her for the ceremony. The High Commissioner said “there Is great opportunity for Pakistan – Canada trading relationship for direct merchandise trade, for services, and investment in both directions”. She further added, “we are ready and interested to work with Pakistan business community and take advantage of the abundant opportunities that Pakistan offers for socio-economic growth with multifarious business opportunities in a wide spectrum of industries and economic sectors” -ABAD lauds resumption of high-rise constructions in Karachi The Sindh government has directed the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) to implement with immediate effect the Supreme Court order with regard to lifting of the ban on construction of high-rise and multi-story buildings in Karachi. Welcoming the provincial government’s decision, the Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) said that early resumption of construction activities will be beneficial for the government, builders and general public as thousands of people, who had lost their livelihood due to the ban on construction of high-rise buildings in the megacity, would start getting their earnings. It is pertinent to recall that more than 300 plans of high-rise and multi-story buildings were pending before the relevant authority and more than Rs600 billion investment money was stuck for over one and a half year due to the said ban. The Supreme Court had lifted its ban on construction of high-rise buildings on 11th December 2018; however, Sindh government took more than one month to direct SBCA for implementation of SC orders. -Naya Pakistan Housing scheme: Important developments made Prime Minister Imran Khan directed to inform the public on progress of housing project of the government on continuous basis. He was chairing a review meeting on progress made so far in Naya Pakistan Housing Project. He also emphasized to finalize the foreclosure laws with the assistance of Attorney General. -PSX recovers to end marginally positive Investors of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) witnessed a turbulent session on Friday where the indices after swinging in both directions ended day slightly positive. Foreign investors on the other hand once again ended as net sellers on Thursday with a total outflow of $4.20 million. On the economic front, the current account deficit widened 37pc to $1.66 billion in December 2018, according to the latest data released by State Bank of Pakistan. Previously, the deficit stood at $1.20 billion in the preceding month (November 2018). Moreover, as per SBP data, the foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank dropped by 2.09pc on a weekly basis (falling below $7 billion mark). -Afghan president thanks Pakistan for help with Taliban talks Afghan President Ashraf Ghani thanked Pakistan on Thursday for its help in pushing forward peace talks with the Taliban as diplomatic efforts continued to keep the process on track, Pakistani officials said. U.S. special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, who has been leading efforts to broker an agreement with the Afghan Taliban, was due in Pakistan on Thursday following meetings with Ghani and other Afghan officials in Kabul. On Thursday, Ghani called Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and "expressed his gratitude for Pakistan's sincere facilitation of these efforts", according to a statement from the Pakistan government spokesman's office. -PM Imran Khan forms CPEC Business Advisory Council Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired a meeting on Friday to review progress on China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects. The meeting decided to form a CPEC Business Advisory Council. While stressing the need for early completion of the CPEC projects, directed the Board of Investment’s chairman to present a comprehensive plan for swift development of special economic zones (SEZs) in the country. The meeting reviewed progress on Pak-China cooperation in the areas of Industrial development, Special Economic Zones, ML-1 project, Agriculture Development, Socio-economic Development, Infrastructure Development and Gwadar development. -Board proposes to restart Pakistan Steel Mills The meeting of the Board Business Development Committee (BDC) of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) was held at Pakistan Steel Karachi after delinking of PSM from Privatization. The meeting was chaired by Mohammad Raziuddin, Chairman Board BDC. The Committee made extensive deliberations on possible options to restart PSM. The Committee appreciated the political philosophy of the present Government towards the need of re-operationalization of PSM, considering the PSM, the only primary steel manufacturing plant in the country, which has national strategic value and its operationalization will help in contributing to the Large Scale Manufacturing (LSM) growth number, beside serving the need of downstream industry. The Committee discussed various options to restart PSM, which have higher probability of financial sustainability, least cost, early restart while keeping the present Human Resource intact. -Govt formulating strategic trade policy to reduce cost of production The Ministry of Commerce was working on a new Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) to reduce the cost of production and encourage investment in export-oriented sectors. Parliamentary Secretary on Commerce Shandana Gulzar Khan informed the National Assembly during question hour on Friday that the ministry was finalizing national tariff policy so that the tariff structure reflects trade policy priorities, improve competitiveness through duty-free access to import raw materials and encourage value addition through the principle of cascading the tariffs and removing anomalies in the tariff structure. She said the policy would aim to encourage value-added exports of the country, adding that STPF would also include measures for tariff rationalization, promotion of research and development of the manufacturing sector and facilitation of SMEs for integration into global value chains. -With enhanced security, foreign tourism rises in Pakistan In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, arrival of foreign tourists is increasing day by day due to restoration of peace and improved security situation in the province. General Manager Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Tourist Information Centres, Muhammad Ali Syed told our Peshawar correspondent that more than fifty tourists from different countries including China, Italy, and Germany visited the province with the start of New Year. These tourists visited different historical places including Tehsil Gor Ghathri, Bala Hisar Fort, Qissa Khawani Bazaar, Sethi town, Peshawar Museum and Heritage Trail in Peshawar city. -China to make entry into oil and gas exploration in Pakistan Pakistan, and China on Friday reiterated their resolve to further strengthen bilateral cooperation in oil and gas exploration sector for meeting ever-growing energy needs of the former. During a meeting between Chinese ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing and Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Ghulam Sarwar Khan, both sides agreed to make the joint working group on oil and gas a more vibrant body, a Petroleum Division press release said. The envoy assured the minister to motivate Chinese investors to invest in oil and gas sector of Pakistan for exploring hydrocarbon deposits in potential areas. -UAE makes an offer to KP government Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has been offered to participate in World Expo 2020 Dubai for the promotion of tourism and other sectors in the province. The development came while the chief minister was talking to a representative delegation of Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the CM House Peshawar where different investment opportunities came under discussion in the meeting. The delegation requested the provincial government to participate in Expo 2020 Dubai so as to promote bilateral tourism between the Pakistan and UAE . Besides this, there are vast opportunities for investment in the oil and gas field between the two countries, the CM was told. -Pakistan’s textile industry receiving higher import queries from US Pakistan is likely to be the beneficiary of the prolonged trade war between the US and China, as the country’s textile industry is likely to receive higher orders from US importers. According to an official of the textile industry, due to ongoing trade tensions between the US and China, Pakistan’s textile industry is getting a huge amount of import queries from the US, reports an English daily. Earlier this week, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) had exempted duties on the import of cotton, a major input for the textile industry to help decrease the cost of industrial outputs. In September last year, the government had reduced the regulatory duty on the import of cotton yarn from 10% to 5%. -Nigeria seeks more trade with Pakistan Nigerian High Commissioner to Pakistan Ashimiyu Adebayo Olaniyi has said that businessmen of Pakistan and Nigeria must collaborate in their relevant fields to exploit the untapped potential. Addressing the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry members, he said both countries are facing many difficulties in different fields, including population, size of economies, purchasing power and GDP etc. In terms of foreign reserves, he noted, the two countries have strengthened themselves considerably in the last year. He said both countries are blessed with oil & gas and minerals resources, urging Pakistani businessmen to invest in Nigeria and strengthen bilateral trade relations for benefit of people of two countries. -‘WHT on cash withdrawal to be abolished for tax filers’ tate Minister for Revenue Hammad Azhar has assured the business community that withholding tax (WHT) on cash withdrawal from bank accounts will be abolished for tax filers in order to encourage the ease of doing business. Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industries (KCCI) Acting President Khurram Shahzad, while sharing details of an earlier meeting held in Islamabad between the state minister and KCCI delegation, said the chamber’s recommendations for the forthcoming finance bill, which would be announced on Jan 23, were extensively discussed during the meeting. “Hammad Azhar assured the delegation, which also included Businessman Group Vice Chairman and former KCCI president Zubair Motiwala, that the government would incorporate relevant suggestions in the bill,” he added. The delegation had extensively discussed problems being faced by the business and industrial community, he said, adding that the government assured KCCI of restoring final tax regime (FTR) for commercial importers under the upcoming finance bill. -PCJCCI seeks Chinese investment in industrial sector Pak-China Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCJCCI) has planned to bring investment from China in the eight potential industrial sectors, including furniture, handicrafts, textile, fertilizers, cement, glasswork energy and pharmaceuticals. PCJCCI President Shah Faisal Afridi and other office-bearers of the chamber discussed the plan at a monthly review meeting. Shah Faisal Afridi on the occasion emphasised the need to chalk out a long-term sustainable growth strategy in order to pave the way for joint ventures between Pakistan and China under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He said CPEC is the dynamic portfolio of various projects and it is basically a framework of regional connectivity that would not only benefit the two countries but would also have positive impacts on Iran, Afghanistan, India and Central Asian Republics. -Govt targets minimal current account gap by end of its tenure By the end of the incumbent governments’ tenure, the finance ministry is targeting a minimal current account gap, which will need a 100% increase in the current savings rate. In a meeting held by the Finance Ministry with stakeholders on Thursday, which included the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), minister for planning and development and minister for power were informed about its forecasts, reports an English daily. Finance Asad Umar aims to reveal these forecasts which will constitute part of the macroeconomic framework on the 23rd of January. -Pakistan likely to host next round of Afghan peace talks Pakistan is likely to host the next round of Afghan peace talks, officials said on Friday, following meeting between the visiting US delegation led by President Trump’s point man Zalmay Khalilzad and Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. Khalilzad, who is leading a high-powered delegation, is currently undertaking a visit to Islamabad as part of efforts to break the deadlock in talks with the Taliban. He also called on Prime Minister Imran Khan and briefed him on his visit to the regional countries on the Afghan peace process. Last month, Khalilzad along with other American officials held direct talks with the Afghan Taliban representatives in Abu Dhabi. Talks were brokered by Pakistan and also attended by Saudi Arabia and UAE. -Sapling plantation drive to kick off from Feb 11 Prime Minister Imran Khan would launch a countrywide tree plantation drive on February 11 that would continue for six days as the federal government finalized a strategy to plant 141.6 million saplings under the Green Pakistan Programme during spring. The armed forces, police and civil armed services, local bodies, corporations, municipalities, autonomous and semi-autonomous bodies, industrial estates, hospitals, dispensaries, farms and agricultural farmhouses, Aukaf department, civil aviation, jails and educational institutions would also participate in a large-scale plantation campaign. According to documents available with Daily Express, the government has set up a target to plant five million trees on February 11, the first day of the spring plantation campaign. -In a first, CCTV cameras installed in classrooms of Peshawar govt school In an unprecedented move, close circuit television (CCTV) cameras have been installed at a government-run high school in Peshawar to keep a close look at activities of both students and teachers, and ensure quality education. The Government Higher Secondary School No.1, which has become the first educational institution in the province for having the monitoring facility, used its annual funds of Rs500,000 for the installation of surveillance cameras in its 48 classrooms. -Govt to launch Safe City project in major cities The government of Balochistan has decided to launch a Safe City project in all major and border cities of the province. The decision came during a high-level meeting on the law and order situation, chaired by Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan on Thursday, where the home secretary, inspector general of police and Frontier Corps officials briefed the participants about efforts of law enforcement agencies (LEAs) for maintaining peace. The meeting was told that implementation of the Quetta Safe City project had begun, while planning was under way to launch similar projects in all major cities of Balochistan, including those in border areas. -Punjab wide anti-polio campaign to kick-off on January 21 First polio eradication drive of 2019 is set to begin on Monday, January 21 in Punjab, Radio Pakistan reported on Friday. As many as 19 million children ageing between 1 to 5 years will be administered anti-polio drops till January 25. Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid has directed all concerned that preparations should be completed till Sunday for the campaign. “The Punjab government wants to make sure that poliovirus circulation in key districts is interrupted during the current low season and the virus is fully eliminated till the end of 2019”, said the minister, while chairing a meeting in Lahore today. -Pakistan Has Exported Human Hair Worth $1.6 Million Since 2013 The Ministry of Commerce has informed National Assembly that Pakistan has exported human hair worth $1.6 million in the past five years. During the Question Hour, the officials of the ministry told the lower house that since 2013, Pakistan had exported 1,05,461 kilograms of human hair worth the US $1,32,000 to China. According to the secretary of commerce, besides China, Pakistan also exported human hair to the United States and the United Arab Emirates during this time, but the neighboring country remained the biggest importer throughout. -Railways Complaint Centre to be established next month Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed on Saturday said that an online Railways Complaint Centre would be set up in Islamabad from February 15 for immediate redressal of complaints against the department. Addressing a press conference at Pakistan Railways Headquarters, he said that citizens would be able to lodge their complaints round the clock regarding any issue of the railways, like misbehaviour of the staff or lack of cleanliness etc., through phone or website. The minister said that the number of ticket dodgers had been reduced significantly after a campaign against them, adding that the department had decided to keep such miscreants in jail besides imposing heavy fines on them. “Pakistan Railways had to bear a loss of Rs60 million per week due to ticket dodgers, which was a huge amount,” he stated.
2019.01.05 02:03 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 61.
-Karachi is Planning to Restart Tram Services Sindh Government is planning to restore the glory of old Karachi area and is planning to rebuild tram services. For the construction and operations of tram service, the provincial government is looking to acquire services of Austrian experts. The Sindh Chief Minister, Murad Ali Shah, met with the Pakistani ambassador posted in Vienna, Mansoor Ahmed Khan, at CM House Karachi. In the meeting, both discussed ways to improve relations with the Austrian government in the field of technical education, renewable hydropower and city planning for Karachi. -Pakistan’s logistics market reaches $34.2bln Pakistan’s logistics market has reached $34.2 billion with annual growth of 18 percent, a minister said on Saturday, while unveiling a plan for state-owned postal operator to enter into ecommerce business. Minister for Postal Services Murad Saeed said future initiatives of Pakistan Post would be compatible with the contemporary needs of existing times. “This would include an entry into the ecommerce business,” Saeed said at a meeting. The minister announced a pilot project for microfinance loan disbursement of Khushhali Bank through Pakistan Post. The project will be piloted by the first week of January and will formally be inaugurated by the mid of January. -Pakistan Army inducts indigenous built Multiple Launch Rocket system in Artillery Corps As per the media report, Pakistan Army has inducted A-100 rocket in Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) of its Corps of Artillery. Media wing of the armed forces, the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) said A-100 rocket had been indigenously developed by Pakistani scientists and engineers. “With over 100 kilometers range the Rocket is a highly effective and potent for interdiction that can effectively disrupt enemy’s mobilization and assembly,” said the ISPR. -$15 billion investment package likely from UAE including mega oil refinery in Pakistan Pakistan is likely to get $ 10 -15 billion investment package from UAE , likely to be announced during the visit of Crown Prince, sources said. Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan is expected to announce the facility for Pakistan during his visit to the country starting January 6. The sources added that Pakistan, in collaboration with the UAE , is also starting construction of Parco Coastal Refinery in Balochistan worth over $5 billion. -Abu Dhabi crown prince to arrive in Pakistan on January 6 Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Muhammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan is scheduled to arrive in Islamabad on January 6, Express News reported. Sheikh Mohammad, who is also Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, had accepted an invitation to visit the country extended by Prime Minister Imran Khan in a telephonic conversation last year. Sources the crown prince will be accompanied by a high-level delegation. He is expected to announce investments in Pakistan. -Currency dealers offer to bring $1b a month Currency dealers have brought $13 billion in Pakistan in the past eight years, including $1 billion since August 2018, to stabilise the country’s foreign currency reserves, the dealers claim. “Dealers contribute $200-300 million a month to the country’s reserves through commercial banks,” said Pakistan Forex Association President Malik Bostan while briefing Finance Minister Asad Umar. “They (dealers) have the potential to bring up to $1 billion a month,” he told The Express Tribune after meeting the finance minister and Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Director General Bashir Memon in Islamabad recently. A delegation of currency dealers, headed by Bostan, asked the minister that the government should offer Rs2 per dollar in rebate to attract higher remittances from overseas Pakistanis. The incentive would help currency dealers to realise their true potential and contribute maximum dollars to the country’s foreign currency reserves, it said. -Imran, Erdoğan discuss bilateral relations, regional issues in Turkey Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday held a one-to-one meeting with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Ankara during his two-day official visit to Turkey. Both the leaders discussed various issues including bilateral relations, national and international issues of mutual interests. A high-level delegation including Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Finance Minister Asad Umar, Planning Minister Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, Adviser on Trade Abdul Razak Dawood and Special Assistant to PM Zulfikar Bukhari is accompanying the PM during his first tour to Turkey. -TLP chief Khadim Rizvi remanded to police custody for another 20 days An anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Punjab capital city has granted a 20-day physical remand of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi and others. Civil Lines police officials, after producing Rizvi in court amid tight security, sought a 30-day remand of the firebrand cleric, Pir Afzal Qadri, Pir Ijaz Ashrafi, and Hafiz Farooqul Hassan. -Pakistan prepares Terror Financing Risk Assessment Report for FATF crucial session Pakistan has prepared Terror Financing Risk Assessment Report in line with the FATF conditions that would be scrutinized in face to face upcoming meeting of the FATF scheduled to be held next week at Sydney. “We will dispatch Terror Financing Risk Assessment Report to FATF on Friday (today) that basically identifies both domestic and foreign sources of funding being utilized for execution of terrorists’ activities,” confirmed by one top official. -This city in Pakistan is going to use cow poo to power its buses In a bid to freshen its air and cut planet-warming emissions, the Pakistani port city of Karachi will introduce cleaner-running buses powered by a decidedly "unclean" fuel: cow poo. With funding from the international Green Climate Fund, Karachi will launch a zero-emission Green Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) network, with 200 buses fuelled by bio-methane. Locals said the new bus system - due to start operating in 2020 - would help reduce air pollution and street noise, but doubted whether it would have enough buses to resurrect the city's ailing transport system. "(Karachi's) public transport system has totally collapsed and most people have to use online taxi-hailing services (and) auto rickshaws," said commuter Afzal Ahmed, 45, who works as a medical sales representative. After management problems forced the Karachi Transport Corporation to fold some two decades ago, Chinese-imported buses running on compressed natural gas fell into disrepair and were taken off the road, worsening public transport woes, he noted. -KP announces development package for Buddhist sites in Mardan Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government has announced a development package for preserving and promoting the Buddhist relics at Takht Bahi, Jamal Garhi and Shehbaz Garhi. Senior Minister for Culture, Tourism and Youth Affairs Atif Khan said this during his visit to Buddhist sites in Mardan on Thursday. “The K-P government will develop Buddhist sites at Takht Bahi, Jamal Garhi and Shehbaz Garhi as international tourism destinations,” he said announcing plans to construct chairlift to facilitate the tourists" -PM Imran Khan approves Rs 50 billion package for Karachi Sindh Governor Imran Ismail has said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has given approval of funds of 50 billion rupees for Karachi that would be utilized to resolve the long standing issues of the metropolis. He was talking to media in Karachi today (Friday) after attending the International Property Expo. The Governor said we intend to start work to improve the condition of roads in the city and to lift the garbage that has marred the beauty of the city for a long time now. He said work would also start soon to lift the debris of encroachments that have been razed to the ground.Talking about the transport projects, the Governor said that the Green Line Bus Service will be fully functional within 4 to 6 months. He said that work on the project by the Federal Government has been completed. He said Sindh Government is carrying out its work while provision of buses for the project by Sindh Government is also awaited. -KP government launched mega project in 25 Tehsils of tribal districts Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government launched a mega project of establishing new playgrounds and upgrading the existing ones in twenty-five different tribal tehsils. Secretary Sports Shahid Zaman said that administration is working on war footing on this project as directed by Prime Minister Imran Khan. He said besides constructing playing fields in tribal areas, it has also been decided to hold a grand tribal districts games event wherein 8 to 10 mostly popular games would be organized and players would be given kits and other facilities. -Turkey hints at buying Military Aircrafts from Pakistan Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has hinted at buying Military trainer aircrafts from Pakistan. -Pakistan becomes 5th largest Motorcycle producing country of the World With 2.5 million units produced annually in Pakistan, country has become the fifth largest motorcycle producing country of the World. -Huge weapons cache recovered by Security Forces in KP Aurakzai Scouts on Friday during a raid at compound in Baghnak area of upper Tehsil of district Aurakzai seized a huge cache of arms and ammunition dumped underground, security sources said. The raid was conducted on tip off that huge quantity of arms and weapons have been dumped at foot-hills. The weapons included 14 hand grenades with 11 fuses, four mortar-shell, explosives and 478 cartridges of machine guns. The seized weapon was dumped for use in some subversive activities, the sources added. -After British Air, Yet another leading Airline of the World wants to start flight operations from Pakistan: Report German Ambassador has hinted that German Flag carrier and one of the leading Airline of the World Lufhtansa Air wants to start operations from Pakistan. -$46 billion export target: Comprehensive strategic policy urged to boost exports President Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) Malik Shahid Saleem Friday called for formulating a comprehensive strategic policy to boost exports. He said business community was looking towards government’s concrete steps to ensure key macro indicators of the economy. "We want more information and input on the Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2018-23 with an aim to double the country’s exports to $46 billion in next five years," he added. In a statement, President RCCI said the government should evolve a comprehensive strategy in consultation with the private sector to increase exports . -Gilgit Baltistan Tourism and Gems sector: PTI government takes important decisions Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan Ali Amin Gandapur says GB has world's best tourism attractions with beautiful waterfalls, lakes, meadows, deserts, and skiing resorts. In an exclusive interview with Radio Pakistan's Correspondent Ijaz Hussain, he said government is committed to develop the untapped tourism potential of Gilgit-Baltistan. The Minister said an MoU will soon be signed with leading international companies to develop eight lakes in the first phase -ExxonMobil making $250 million investment in Pakistan: Razak Dawood Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industry & Production and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood said Exxon Mobil was making an investment of $250 million in Pakistan. He said the company had re-entered Pakistan after a gap of almost three decades and setup its office in the country. Pakistan is requesting China to switch its investment focus from power & infrastructure to industrialization, agriculture and education in regard to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). -Weekly inflation decreases by 0.31pc The inflation based on Sensitive Price Index (SPI) during the week ended on January 3, for the combined income group registered a decrease of 0.31pc as compared to the previous week. The SPI for the week under review in the above-mentioned group was recorded at 237.85 points against 238.58 points registered in the previous week, according to the data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Friday. -Chinese group to set up $70 million ceramics unit in Faisalabad A prominent Chinese industrial group has decided to establish a ceramics unit in Pakistan with an investment of $70 million – a decision that is likely to lessen country’s reliance on imported tiles. “The ceramics unit is expected to become operational by March 2020,” according to a senior official of the Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development and Management Company (FIEDMC). FIEDMC, located in the heart of Pakistan’s industrial hub, is rapidly transforming into an attractive destination for well-known foreign companies, which are planning to set up their units following lack of progress on the Special Economic Zones (SEZs), which are planned to be constructed under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). “The Chinese industrial group already enjoys its presence in 50 countries,” said FIEDMC Chief Executive Officer Aamir Saleemi. “The group plans to import machinery from China and aims to complete work by March 2020.” -Prime Minister Imran Khan invites Turkish investors to join CPEC Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is on his first official two-day visit to Turkey, on Thursday said that it's time for Islamabad and Ankara to take their bilateral trade to a higher level, citing Pakistan’s ideal geo-strategic location and its huge potential for investment in infrastructure and tourism. Addressing a business forum of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) in Ankara on Thursday night, he said his government will provide all possible assistance and support to the Turkish investors in Pakistan, Khan said that Pakistan is a virgin territory as a lot of trade areas have not been exploited yet, adding that huge reserves of oil, gas, copper, coal and other admirals are yet to be unexplored. He said tremendous trade and economic activities will start due to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said special economic zones are being established through this mega project.
2019.01.03 01:46 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 59.
Sorry, had personal issues. Updates will now go ahead as normal. -China building 'most advanced' naval warships for Pakistan: Report China is building the first of four "most advanced" naval warships for its "all-weather ally" Pakistan as part of a major bilateral arms deal to ensure among other things "balance of power" in the strategic Indian Ocean, state media reported. Equipped with modern detection and weapon systems, it will be capable of anti-ship, anti-submarine and air-defence operations, China Daily quoted state-owned defence contractor China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) as saying. -Attorney General refutes to recent news about the Reko Diq case. Media blunder and false reporting. Case result isn't sceduled until 6-8 months from now -Pakistan expecting yet another FDI deal worth $2.5 billion, dedicated towards post industry Pakistan Post is expecting up to $2.5 billion in foreign direct investment on public-private partnership model for the capacity building of Pakistan Post in the logistic sector. “The revenue share of Pakistan Post in this endeavour is expected up to Rs100 billion per annum whereas the current loss of Pakistan Post is at Rs11 billion,” the statement added. Federal minister Murad Saeed emphasised focus on the domestic money transfer market which was primarily the legacy of Pakistan Post as money order delivery “but ironically was captured by private entrepreneurs”. -PM Imran Khan set to embark on first Turkey visit Prime Minister Imran Khan would be visiting Turkey for a two-day official visit on January 3 on President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s invitation. This will be Premier Imran’s first visit to the country after assuming charge. Imran Khan will be accompanied by a high-level delegation including Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Planning Minister Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtyar and Adviser to the Prime Minister Abdul Razak Dawood. During the visit, he will meet President Erdogan and discuss the prospects of cementing bilateral relations between the two countries; regional and international situation will also be exchanged by the leaders. -Punjab government announces mega project for South Punjab Punjab government has announced different mega projects worth seven billion rupees for three districts, including Bahawalpur, Rahim Yar Khan and Bahawalnagar. The meeting decided provision of additional funds of sixty nine million rupees for the extending project of water supply pipeline in Cholistan desert including water supply pipeline from Kudwala to Banna Post in Cholistan. Punjab Chief Minister also approved an additional amount of one hundred and twenty million rupees for establishment of Cadet College in Khanpur and two hundred and ten million rupees for the completion of sewerage scheme in Chistian. -Pakistan foreign minister hints at good news soon Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mahmood Qureshi Sunday said the people of Pakistan would get a good news soon as the country had defined its right direction. Addressing the members of Pakistani community here at the Pakistan Embassy during his day long visit to Qatar, the foreign minister said the government had formally launched the economic diplomacy and his visit was also part of that initiative, according to the PTI’s official Twitter handle. -In a first, Pakistan hosts figure skating competition at Naltar sporting event Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) bagged the top prize for their performance at the Sadia Khan and Children Ski Cup 2018 held at Naltar Skiing Resort on Sunday. Base Commander of Pakistan Air Force (PAF) Kalabagh Base Air Commodore Asim Ijaz was the chief guest of the event. The chief guest handed out medals and trophies among the coveted winners of the tournament. This was the first time figure skating sport was also a part of the event. Mallak, an 11-year-old girl, from Dubai showcased her swift moves enthralling the audience with her performance. Moreover, a foreign coach was also invited by the Winter Sports Federation of Pakistan (WSFP) to teach the basics of figure skating to the locals. -Finance Minister to announce three-year road map to revive economy: Fawad Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain has said that the upcoming mini-budget is geared toward increasing investments and growth. Commenting on an article published in a newspaper via his Twitter account on Sunday, he said Finance Minister Asad Umar will announce a three-year roadmap to revive the economy of the country. He said the Finance Minister had assured that he had enough cushion to settle an IMF package. -Network of hostile intelligence agencies busted in Balochistan: minister Balochistan Home Minister Mir Zia Lango on Sunday claimed that a network of five hostile intelligence has been dismantled in the province by law enforcement agencies. In a statement, Mir Zia Lango said that the network was involved in creating instability, terrorism, inciting people against the state and spreading chaos in Balochistan. He lauded the performance of county’s security forces and said, “Our security agencies successfully nabbed and dismantled the network of these agencies.” -KP government established World Class Forensic Science Laboratory in Peshawar The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has established a state of the art Forensic Science Laboratory in Peshawar for investigation of crimes. Peshawar Police Department says the laboratory will help in quickly disposing of investigation of heinous crimes. Similarly, crime scene units have been established in eight districts of the province. -Pakistan to Also Get Oil on Credit from Azerbaijan After the facility of oil on deferred payment was extended by Saudi Arabia and UAE, Pakistan is all set to receive the same facility from a central Asian country. Azerbaijan has offered Pakistan to supply oil on credit. The government has convened the meeting of Economic Coordination Committee of the cabinet (ECC) of the cabinet to approve the agreement with the central Asian state. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, which is expected to give its approval for an agreement with Azerbaijan for fuel supply on credit. Finance Minister Asad Umar will preside over the ECC meeting. The meeting will also review a status report on the export of public sector wheat stocks, arrangement of funds for payment of dues to personnel of the Pakistan Machine Tool Factory, and allocation of additional quantities of gas production from the Adhi gas field to the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited. According to a media report, Azerbaijan had offered to supply petroleum products to the Pakistan State Oil (PSO) through the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) on credit under a long-term agreement. -Cheap electricity announced for five export sectors Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved cheaper rates of electricity for five export industries including textile, surgical instruments, sports goods, carpets and leather industries, sources said. The government has slashed per unit rate of electricity for these industries from existing 14 rupees to 10 rupees per unit. The textile manufacturers have welcomed the government’s incentive for boosting the exports. -China to transfer $2bn to Pakistan: Financial Times According to a report published in Financial Times, Pakistan’s old friend, China does not want to see Pakistan going through economic turmoil, and has decided to support Pakistan with $2billion aid in the present scenario. “The aid will be helpful in boosting Pakistan’s foreign reserves,” the report reads. Pakistan is also holding talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for another bailout package, the next round of talks to take place in the current month of January. -Saudi Arabia likely to make heavy investment in Pakistan: sources Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Islamabad Nawaf Saeed Al-Malki called on Prime Minister Imran Khan and discussed bilateral issues and the expected heavy investment by the kingdom in Pakistan, said sources on Tuesday. Nawaf Saeed Al-Malki conveyed the special message of Saudi Arabia’s leadership to PM Imran during the meeting held on December 31 at PM’s office in Islamabad, the sources added. Issues of bilateral interest, regional situation and the expected heavy investment by Riyadh came under discussion in the meeting. The sources said that Saudi Arabia’s leadership had already sent numerous goodwill messages to PM Imran, the sources said and added that both the countries are in contact with each other over the expected heavy investment. -State Bank of Pakistan gives yet another incentive to Exporters The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has allowed the authorized dealers to effect advance payments up to US $10,000 per invoice on behalf of importers cum exporters for import of raw materials, accessories and spares. The decision has been taken in a view of proliferate export and generate economic activity through the industrial units intending to import spares and raw material for export of finished goods, said a statement issued here on Tuesday. The central bank earlier had restricted the advance payment facility in July 2018. -MCC Port Qasim collects Rs89bn customs duty in six months Model Customs Collectorate (MCC) Port Qasim has collected customs duty of Rs89 billion during the first half (July-December) of the current fiscal year against Rs71 billion collected in the corresponding period of 2017-18, registering a growth of 24.78 per cent year-on-year basis and 6 per cent growth against the assigned proportionate target of Rs84 billion for the period. MCC Port Qasim collected Rs16.11 billion customs duty in December 2018, which shows 26.50pc growth, against the collection of Rs12.73 billion in the corresponding month of last year. This collection of Rs16 billion reflects 9pc positive growth as against the assigned target of Rs14.77 billion for the month. During the first six months, the collection of sales tax stood at Rs144 billion as against Rs134 billion on YoY basis while the collection of income tax remained Rs31 billion against the last year collection of Rs26 billion, showing 7pc and 19pc growth during the period under review. The collectorate has recorded unprecedented growth of 14pc in total revenue collection from Rs233 billion to Rs267 billion on YoY basis during the first half of the current fiscal. -Market watch: Stocks surge over 900 points in first session of year The first day of the year set the tone for the stock market on Tuesday as it surged over 900 points in a handsome rally. Bullish sentiments dominated the market as soon as trading began and the index stayed in positive territory for the entire day. Stocks staged a sharp recovery amid speculation after China’s commitment to lend $2 billion to support Pakistan’s sliding rupee as well as reduction in petroleum product prices by the government. At the end of trading, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded an increase of 929.10 points or 2.51% to settle at 37,995.77. -'Courageous' Justice Khosa will be the next CJP The federal government on Wednesday announced the appointment of ‘courageous’ Supreme Court Justice Asif Saeed Khosa as the Chief Justice of Pakistan, replacing incumbent Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, from January 18. Justice Khosa, who is son-in-law of former chief justice Nasim Hassan Shah, is seen as one of the top jurists on criminal law. During his career, spanning over a period of more than nineteen and a half years so far, he has decided about 55,000 cases. -Rs 10 billion Nursing University to be established in Islamabad Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination has completed initial work on various mega projects during last year for revamping of entire health infrastructure with estimated cost of Rs14 billion. According to an official of the ministry, the government brought a considerable change in health sector and the plan of four new hospitals have been finalized which will be established in Islamabad to reduce the patients’ burden on existing hospitals. He said the government has planned to construct 200-bedded hospital in the federal capital with support of the Saudi government. -Govt hands over PSM revival plan to private steel companies, HUBCO Setting aside Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) board of directors as well as Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules, the Ministry of Industries and Production has handed over the task of PSM revival to private steel mill companies and Hub Power Company Limited (HUBCO), sources revealed on Tuesday. According to insiders, the ministry has allegedly hired the services of ‘favourite’ private steel companies and HUBCO for the revival of ailing PSM, which was facing Rs475 billion in losses. They said that the ministry, acting upon the advice of PM’s Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood, has advised the PSM Board to share confidential information and data with private companies and HUBCO for preparation of the revival plan. -Oman awards road infrastructure projects to NESPAK NESPAK has been awarded mega road and infrastructure projects in the Sultanate of Oman, enabling a Pakistani engineering firm to generate handsome foreign exchange for the country by exporting its expert consultancy services. As per details, the Ministry of Transport and Communication, Oman, has awarded a consultancy services contract to NESPAK for the design of a Main Highway/Expressway connecting Thumrait Interchange with Mubaila Interchange on the Muscat Expressway. As consultants, NESPAK will design major components of the project comprising a dual carriageway main road (25km), dual carriageway link road (5km), service roads (10km), five interchanges, five bridges, six vehicular underpasses/overpasses and two pedestrian underpasses/overpasses. -CPEC: First ever power mega project in the history of Balochistan operationlised A major power project in Hub, Balochistan under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has been operationlised. The power project has producing capacity of 660-MW electricity, was commissioned today.The power project is fired by imported coal. According to China Power Hub Generation Company (CPHGC), it successfully synchronized one of its two 660MW coal-fired power plants with the national grid. -Pakistan's installed energy capacity hits highest level of history at 33,836 MW: Report Ministry of Power Division on Tuesday informed the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that the amount of circular debt had reached to Rs 755 billion. The Committee met at Parliament House with Leader of the Opposition Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif in the chair. Secretary Ministry of Power Division while giving briefing to the committee said that presently the country’s installed capacity of the electricity was 33,836 mw, while the derated capacity was about 31,000 mw. -18 drug peddlers arrested 'red-handed' from Punjab's educational institutions To counter the trend of consuming recreational drugs among the youth, the Anti-Narcotics Force Punjab is continuing its operations outside educational institutions across the province. The teams arrested at least 18 drugs sellers in a month from outside educational institutions of Sialkot, Multan, Faisalabad, and Lahore. A few months ago, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar took a suo motu notice on an application and sought reports from the police and the ANF on the use of drugs in private and government educational institutions. -Balochistan's Virgin Beach listed among Top 50 Asian Beaches An untouched beach in southwestern Pakistan has made it to the list of Top 50 Asian Beaches. According to FlightNetwork’s ‘The World’s Best Beaches For 2018’ link list, the Kund Malir Beach is one of the most exotic beaches and definitely one of the top tourist attractions in the country. -Commission formed to regularise PM's Bani Gala residence The Interior ministry on Tuesday formed a federal commission to regularise Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Bani Gala residence. According to a notification, the commission comprises 12 members with the chairman of the Capital Development Authority as its convener. -Islamabad Master Plan: Federal government makes 12 member commission The Ministry of Interior on Tuesday constituted a 12-member federal commission to review the master plan of Islamabad.The chairman Capital Development Authority will perform the duty of convener of the commission, which will review the master plan and give recommendations up to 2040. -KP government identifies 25 new spots across province for Tourism Development Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Minister for Tourism and Sports Muhammad Atif Khan says Pakistan-China relations will be further strengthened with the passage of time. Talking to newsmen during his visit to One Window China Center in Peshawar on Wednesday, he said establishment of the Center will provide information to Pakistani youth about China, its history, culture and scientific advancement. Referring to promotion of tourism in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Atif Khan said about twenty-five sites have been identified in this regard in different areas of the province. -Pakistan Borrows $1.86 Billion in First Five Months of FY 2018-19 Pakistan borrowed $1.86 billion from multilateral and bilateral donors in the first five months (July-Nov) of the current financial year 2018-19 against $2.877 billion during the same period of last year (2017-18).The latest data from Economic Affairs Division (EAD) shows that the country provisionally received $272.39 million including $260.35 million in loans and $12.04 million in grants in November. The PML-N government had estimated foreign assistance of $9.69 billion for 2018-19 including $394.34 million in grants and $9.297 billion in loans. The country received $11.486 billion against the budgeted assistance of $8.094 billion for 2017-18 including $3.716 billion from foreign commercial banks. -Pakistan Iran Religious Tourism takes unprecedented surge, hits highest level of history Religious tourism between Iran and Pakistan has witnessed unprecedented surge as during the months of Muharram and Safar this Islamic year over 75,000 Pakistani pilgrims visited religious places in Iran. “According to documents submitted to the Interior Ministry, State Minister for Interior Shehryar Khan Afridi, on special directions of Prime Minister Imran Khan, ensured the provision of foolproof security to the pilgrims while modern and state-of-the-art facilities have also been installed at Pakistan House,” it said. For some fairly fresh news: -Rangers intelligence busted cyber gang in Karachi Rangers have arrested on Tuesday night a 10-member group involved in looting millions from around 150 residents of Karachi through an online car selling website. The Rangers conducted raids in Korangi, Gulshan-e-Iqbal and Surjani Town to arrest the suspects. -Safa Pekhawar: KP government launches yet another unprecedented initiative in capital Peshawar Peshawar residents can dial 1334 or use the “Safa Pekhawar” app available on the Google Playstore to lodge a complaint to the Water and Sanitation Services Peshawar .“We will respond and resolve your complaint within 48 hours,” says the company spokesperson Hassan Ali. -Rakhshanda Naz: First ever female ombudsperson appointed in the history of KP The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has appointed first ever female provincial ombudsperson under the Protection Against Harassment of Women at Workplace (Amendment) Act, 2018. The KP Cabinet decided the name of Rukhshanda Naz, a social activist and women rights defender, for the post. She has been appointed under the law to curb harassment at workplace. The actual law was passed in 2010 under which the provincial and federal governments were bound to appoint anti-harassment ombudsperson in three months. Except for KP , all three provinces had appointed their ombudsperson. -NEPRA cuts electricity prices in Pakistan NEPRA has issued a notification for cut in power tariff amounting to 32 paisa per unit. The decrease in electricity prices will provide a relief of Rs2 billion to the consumers. -Pakistan likely to receive $1 billion loan tranche Senate Standing Committee on Finance was informed here Wednesday that the third loan tranche worth of US$1 billion from Saudi Arabia was likely to be released during current month. A senior official of ministry of finance informed the committee that the government had already received $2 billion from Saudi Arabia while the remaining $1 billion would be issued during current month. -PTI government announces big subsidy for sunflower farmers The government has announced a Rs5,000 per acre subsidy for sunflower farmers to meet the growing demand of edible oil in the country. Punjab Agriculture Minister Malik Nauman Ahmed Langrial, while presiding over a seminar on the topic of profitable cultivation of sunflower, said that the province was facing a challenge to meet the requirements of edible oil for its inhabitants. The minister noted that the farmers also seem reluctant to sow sunflower due to water scarcity. He informed that the country’s annual sunflower production was only 12pc and the government was annually spending a massive amount to import about 88pc of the edible oil. -Foreign Investment from across the World reported in 57 new companies in Pakistan Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan registered one thousand one hundred and thirty new companies during December 2018, representing a growth of forty three percent over corresponding period of financial year. According to SECP , the number of registered companies has now reached to ninety four thousand two hundred and five (94205). Foreign investment has been reported in 57 new companies. -PTI government to launch new Mineral Policy to tap billions of dollars of mineral resources in Pakistan The Planning Commission organized a consultative session at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry to get the input and proposals of business community for the new Mineral Policy in order to develop the mineral sector on modern lines. Dr. Syed Akhtar Hussain Shah, Member (Private Sector Development & Competitiveness), Planning Commission, Riaz Sahito Deputy Chief Ministry of Planning, Javed Iqbal Khattak General Manager SMEDA KPK and others were present. Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Syed Akhtar Hussain Shah said that the government wanted to develop mineral sector on modern lines as it has great potential to create new jobs and enhance exports. -2.5 crore out of school children: PTI government to launch nationwide campaign Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood Wednesday said the ministry would soon launch a Nationwide Literacy Campaign to increase the Literacy rate by at least 12 percent in next four years. During a meeting with a high level delegation of Ufone, the minister said that we are thinking of declaring an Education Emergency and will go to cabinet for concept clearance and support in couple of weeks, a press release said. The minister further informed the delegation that this National Literacy Drive will be a mega campaign in which about 5,000 Adult literary & Skill Centers will be setup in each district of Pakistan, special accelerated learning syllabus will be introduced and a National Literacy Coordination Center will be setup. -Pakistan likely to get $799 million foreign investment arrears Senate Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecommunications (IT&T) was informed that a Dubai-based Etisalat delegation is expected to visit Pakistan this month to re-initiate talks to resolve much-awaited US $799 million outstanding dues on account of privatization of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL). The parliamentary panel met with Rubina Khalid in chair here was also informed that "We have re-initiated process to materialize outstanding dues on account of PTCL privatization and would try to find a middle way for early resolution of the matter." -First ever Robotics Center in the history of Pakistan makes headway The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has released the budget of Rs 80 million for purchasing of equipments and induction of new employees in the Pakistan Institute of Robotic Science (PIRS). According to the official sources on Wednesday, the released amount would be utilized to purchase equipments for the national robotic center headquarter as well as its five attached centers. They said amount would also be used to fill the vacancies of different cadres in all six robotic centers. An amount of Rs 400 million was sought for the Robotic Center in September last year out of which 80 million have been released now, the sources confirmed. Around 20 employees would be hired in the head quarters of the Robotic Center established in the National University of Science and Technology (NUST). -ExxonMobil to commence drilling on 6th The drilling equipment of ExxonMobil, the world largest oil and gas company, has arrived at the Karachi port for exploration of oil and gas. Information available with Pakistan Today revealed that three supply vessels have arrived at the Karachi port after the gap of nearly three decades. They are expected to commence drilling (230km inside the sea) on January 6. This is the first time that any company in Pakistan would drill in the sea to explore oil and gas. -Govt to implement Geographical Indication Law after 18 years As Pakistan is yet to implement Geographical Indication Law ever since it was drafted in the year 2000, the Ministry of Commerce is set to submit the draft law to the cabinet for approval before presenting it to the parliament for the same. The GI Law, which is pending for a long time, was needed to protect commercial heritage of the country’s products, including basmati rice, Peshawari chappal, Multani halwa, Sindhi ajrak, Sargodha’s kinnow, Kasuri methi, Sindhri mango, Dir knives, Swati wild mushrooms, Nili-Ravi buffalo, Chaman grapes, Pashmina shawls, Gilgit Baltistan’s apricot etc. Taking notice of the long pending draft law, Commerce Secretary Mohammad Younus Dagha has asked the relevant department and staff to submit the draft GI Law to Ministry of Law within two days so that it could be approved by the cabinet and subsequently by the parliament. -1,130 new companies registered in Dec 2018 The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) registered 1,130 new companies in December. As compared to the corresponding month of the last financial year, it represents a growth of 43 per cent, raising the number of registered companies to 94,205. The massive increase is the result of the SECP’s various reforms measures, including the introduction of a simplified combined process for name reservation and incorporation, reduction of fee, assistance of incorporation by facilitation wings of CROs etc. Around 74 per cent companies were registered as private limited companies, while around 24 per cent were registered as single member companies. Two per cent were registered as public unlisted, non-profit associations, foreign companies and limited liability partnerships (LLP). -FIA Arrests Man Behind Child Pornography Video from Lahore The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested a person allegedly involved in child pornography from Lahore’s Badami Bagh area after a raid.The FIA raid was a consequence of a video clip of the accused person with a child that had gone viral on the social media. After the circulation of the video clip, the agency’s cyber crime wing sprang into action and arrested the accused from Lahore. According to FIA cyber crime wing Deputy Director, Chaudhry Sarfraz, the agency’s team has retrieved video clips of 27 minor girls from the mobile phone of the suspect. He added that in the retrieved clip, the accused can be seen forcing the children into sexual acts.
2018.12.29 23:49 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 58.
-Pakistan and Iran ink key accord to achieve $5 billion target Iran and Pakistan signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on road transportation after two days of intense talks. According to the Road Maintenance and Transportation Organization’s (RMTO) website, the talks stressed the growing trend of cooperation in the international road transportation between the two countries to support sustainable economic growth. Given the target set for increasing exchanges from one billion dollars to five billion dollars, both sides underlined pursuing decisions made during the ninth meeting of Joint Iran-Pakistan Working Group. -Pakistan Post launches yet another new initiative PP decided to hire private transport companies to ensure timely delivery of mail from Rawalpindi to cities of Punjab, Azad Jammu Kashmir (AJK) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). As per media reports, the department has invited tenders from all major private transport companies and those owning their own vehicles. The contract for delivering mail to a private transport company will be awarded on January 14. -PTI government to fetch $3 billion mega deals Government has decided on Wednesday to privatise two liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fired power plants, with a combined capacity of 2,453 megawatts, as a bundle package due to legal obstacles in the way of separating these plants from their parent firm. The Cabinet Committee on Privatisation (CCOP) endorsed the Privatisation Commission’s recommendation to sell 1,230MW Haveli Bahadur Shah and 1,223MW Balloki power plants as a bundle deal. The government expects $2- $3 billion from the sale of these two plants. -With CPEC, Security in Pakistan has improved: Global Times The security in the cities of Pakistan has certainly improved in recent years with the progress in the ChinaPakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a pilot project of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) launched by China. Take Peshawar, a city which has been hit by terrorism in northern Pakistan. The security has certainly improved in recent years with the progress in the CPEC , according to an article published by Global Times on Thursday. Local people know that terrorism would stand in the way of Belt and Road projects, so they consciously resist the designs of anti-social elements, leading to a reduction in incidents of terrorism. -Pakistan, UK sign prisoner transfer deal The United Kingdom and Pakistan signed a prisoner transfer treaty here on Thursday. Pakistan’s Secretary for Interior Maj (retd) Azam Suleman Khan and British High Commissioner in Islamabad Thomas Drew signed the United Kingdom-Pakistan Prisoner Transfer Agreement in Islamabad. The prisoners’ transfer deal between the two countries was in principle approved during recent Pakistan visit of British Home Secretary Sajid Javid updating a previous treaty between the two countries. The agreement facilitates a foreign prisoner in both countries to serve their sentences closer to their home. -New Requirement for Ahmadis to get CNIC : Must sign declaration that they're not Muslims. Previously only non-Ahmadi Muslims had to sign a declaration rejecting Ahmadis as Muslims. -Pakistan Army Chief awarded with Medal from Russian Federation Russian Ambassador to Pakistan, H.E Mr Alexey Yurevish Dedov has awarded Pakistan with a Commonwealth medal. -Federal government to launch mega project in Gwadar Federal government to establish a big ship-breaking yard in Gwadar , sources said. Sources in the government said that a policy board for the project is being finalised. The board will decide about land allocation and completion of the ship-breaking yard project which is expected to create enormous employment opportunities. -Economic diplomacy: Pakistani Ambassadors put heads down over economic revival A two-day Envoys Conference on Economic Diplomacy was held in Islamabad on Thursday to attract foreign investment in Pakistan. Addressing the inaugural session, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Economic Diplomacy is the need of the hour and the government has placed economic revival and growth at the highest pedestal of its reform agenda. -In a first, Punjab government to distribute 10,000 Health Insurance Cards A high level meeting of the Minister Delivery Unit of the Punjab Health Department, chaired by Health Minister Dr. Yasmin Rashid, was held in Lahore. Addressing the meeting, the Minister said that all arrangements has been completed for the distribution of ten thousand health Insurance cards among the needy in the various districts of the Punjab in next month. -In a first, Pakistan seeking Free Trade Agreement with Latin America trading bloc: Report Pakistan has requested a Free Trade Agreement with the Latin American Countries. The External Relations Group of Mercosur will put forward Pakistan’s appeal for signing a free trade agreement (FTA) in early 2019, in order to present a prospect to Islamabad to reduce the trade discrepancy with countries of the Latin America trading bloc. -PTI government decides to slash foreign cargo ships fare amounting to $4.2 billions annually As per media report, Federal Minister for Maritime affairs, Ali Zaidi on Thursday vowed to slash existing cargo fare of 4.2 billion dollars being paid by Pakistan to foreign ships. -Govt to Pay Off All Dues of Pakistan Steel Mills’ Employees Federal Government in its today’s Cabinet Meeting has approved to pay off all the dues of Pakistan Steel Mills’ (PSM) employees. The federal cabinet met in Islamabad with Prime Minister Imran Khan in the chair. During the meeting, the cabinet gave the approval to pay off all outstanding dues of PSM employees including salary, pension and provident fund, gratuity and payroll dues to families of deceased employees. -Textile body sees 10% hike in exports if refunds released Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMA) Central Chairman Muhammad Jawed Bilwani said that the textile industry can be enlarged by up to 10% next year if the government releases refunds. -Oman minister suggests cooperation in tourism Oman Minister for Tourism Ahmed bin Nasser Al Mahrizi has emphasised that private sectors of Oman and Pakistan could play a vital role in tapping the huge economic potential in various sectors of both countries. Speaking to business community at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Wednesday, the Omani minister stressed the need for chambers of commerce of both sides to establish robust contacts and ensure timely dissemination of trade-related information. The tourism industry of Oman – a member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) – widened rapidly on the back of massive tourist attractions which included beaches, desert safari, caving, hiking, historic and cultural locations, forts, world heritage sites, cultural festivals, sporting events and adventures, he pointed out. The minister suggested that Oman and Pakistan could work together in the field of tourism and invited an LCCI delegation to Oman for exploring trade and investment avenues. -Punjab Digitizes Forest Records with Satellite Imagery The Punjab administration has digitized forest records with the establishment of a geographic information system (GIS) laboratory which is situated near Ravi Road, Lahore. As part of the initiative, forest records in the province are being digitally mapped. So far 750,000 acres of the forest land has already been mapped out. While the monitoring and maintenance of the area on a permanent basis is also being switched to digital. As part of this project 500,000 acres of forest land has already been accounted for through satellite imagery. With the help of this modern technology we can now confirm the correct number of trees, area and location of a forest in any part of Punjab. Pretty soon the information will be available to the public via a mobile phone application. The same information is being made available via a web portal. -Pakistan-Afghan border: Army completes fencing of 482km border strip The Pakistan Army has completed fencing of the first 482 km long patch of the 1,403km long Pakistan-Afghanistan border in the Khyber Pakhtunkha (K-P). The fence is provided with security cameras and motion detectors. On Thursday a delegation of journalists visited the Pakistan-Afghanistan Torkham border in the K-P’s Khyber district where security authorities gave them a detailed briefing on border management. They said in 2017, the Pakistan Army in the first phase started working on 482km long patch along Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Work on this patch has now completed well before time bringing about a visible decline in terrorism and smuggling. -Qatar opens second visa facilitation centre for Pakistanis Qatar has inaugurated its second visa facilitation centre in Karachi in a bid to ensure swift visa processing as well as promote transparency and eventually improve labour rights in Qatar. Major Abdullah Al-Khalifa, Director Visa Services Department – Qatar Ministry of Interior, along with Qatar Consul General in Karachi Mishal Mohammad Al-Ansari and Sindh Minister for Women Development Syeda Shehla Raza, inaugurated the centre on Saturday. Qatar insists that introduction of the new visa mechanism will ensure transparency due to digitalisation of processes and completion of all procedural requirements before an applicant leaves Pakistan. -PM Khan approves launch of new private airline from Sialkot Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday granted approval for the launch of a new private airline from Sialkot International Airport. Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs Usman Dar, AirSial Chairman Fazal Jillani and other members of the local business community met with the prime minister and Minister for Privatisation and Aviation Muhammad Mian Soomro in Sialkot. The airline is to be launched through cooperation with local traders and businessmen. The chairman of AirSial said the airline would become operational within the next year. The businessmen thanked the premier for the government's assistance in the launch of the airline. -PM pays surprise visit to PIMS hospital, directs for standard treatment facilities Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday paid a surprise visit to Pakistan Institute Of Medical Sciences (PIMS) hospital. During his visit Imran Khan inquired the hospital administration about provision of medicines to the patients. He also interacted with the under treatment patients and expressed his full satisfaction for the provision of health facilities and good treatment. The prime minister also examined different departments of the hospital including Neurological Surgery, Orthopedic, Eye and Emergency. He directed the hospital administration to continue provision of standard treatment facilities to the patients. -Pakistan, EU ink two agreements worth €100mn The Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and the European Union (EU) ambassador to Pakistan Jean Francois Cautain on Friday signed two financing agreements, ‘Development through Enhanced Education Programme (DEEP)’ and “Growth for Rural Advancement and Sustainable Progress (GRASP)’, worth €100 Million. According to a statement released from the ministry, Pakistan and the EU has a long history of development cooperation and the financing agreements are part of the multiannual Indicative programme (2014-2020) signed between EU and Pakistan. GRASP is a six year programme that contributes to the reduction of poverty through development of rural SMEs thereby, creating gender inclusive employment and income opportunities in the rural areas of Sindh and Balochistan through targeted support to both the public and private sectors. It is a grant amounting to Euro 50 Million, reads the statement. -Russia ready to assist Pakistan Steel Mills expansion: 200 Russian companies are also keen to explore opportunities in Pakistan Russia has offered assistance in the expansion of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM). It is also engaged in numerous projects and is cooperating with Pakistan in the construction of north and south gas pipeline from Karachi to Lahore besides working on a project at Jamshoro Power Plant for production of 600MW power. The 200 Russian companies are keen to explore opportunities in Pakistan, a top Russian leader said here on Friday. “The bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia improved to $660 million during 10 months of the current calendar year which is expected to reach around $750 to $800 million by year-end,” said Trade Representative of Russia Yury Kozlov during a special meeting at Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) here on Friday. He said although there was a huge potential to boost the existing trade volume between the two countries, it had been gradually improving mainly due to lack of direct banking channels. “In this regard, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and the Central Bank of Russian Federation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in January 2018, but the progress was too slow as not much has happened since then; therefore, the State Banks of both countries will have to act more energetically.” -Punjab govt will soon ban the disclosure of baby’s gender during pregnancy. Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid told ARY News that the provincial government would table a bill soon that will ban disclosure of baby’s gender during pregnancy. Dr Yasmin Rashid who has taken revolutionary measures since assuming the charge of health ministry said that the incidents of female foeticide are increasing in Pakistan so Punjab government is planning to curb the heinous act by legislation. It is pertinent to note here that Section 338 of the Pakistan Penal Code defines abortion (Isqat-i-Hamal) for the fetus whose organs have not fully developed. The very next section prescribes punishment for this kind of abortion. If the abortion was performed with the consent of the woman, the person convicted would be punished with imprisonment which may extend to three years. If the consent of the woman was not taken, the punishment might extend to ten years. Section 338-B deals with a fetus whose organs have been formed while the abortion was undertaken. In such a case, the offender can be imprisoned up-to seven years in addition to paying the diyat for the child. Additionally, if a woman dies as a result of abortion, the offender will be punished for causing the death of a person. This follows through from when the government made thalassemia tests mandatory before marriage -Major avenue in Brooklyn named after Jinnah A section of a busy avenue in Brooklyn — a borough of New York City — has been named after Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. Under a resolution adopted on the occasion of Jinnah’s birthday on Dec 25, the New York City Council designated the part of Coney Island Avenue — where the Pakistani-American community is concentrated — as ‘Mohammad Ali Jinnah Way’. The resolution was tabled at the New York City Council by councilman Jumaane Williams and was adopted by a majority vote. “We are delighted over the council’s decision which meets our long-standing demand,” said PAYO President Waqil Ahmad. “It is a gift to the Pakistani-American community here as well as to the people of Pakistan,” he added. -Internet to get a lot faster as Cloudflare launches three new data centers across Pakistan Here’s some really good news for internet users in Pakistan: the experience is about to get a lot better as Cloudflare, one of the world’s most prominent Content Delivery Network and domain security provider is launching three new data centers in Lahore, Islamabad, and Karachi. Cloudflare is one of the largest providers of CDNs and domain security around the world. More than 12 million different domains are currently employing the services of Cloudflare, which constitutes a big portion of the web that all of us use. It is now opening three new data centers in Pakistan. So what does that mean for you as an internet user? It means that some of the sites will start performing much better now thanks to those data centers. In fact, according to statistics released by Cloudflare, some sites now open 3 times better on PTCL’s network after those data centers became operational. In addition to Cloudfare, Akamai, which is another large company providing similar services worldwide, already has a partnership with PTCL. This new development with Cloudfare will definitely work towards further improving the experience of internet users in Pakistan. -Pakistan's first ever ice hockey match played in Gilgit-Baltistan The first-ever match of ice hockey in Pakistan was played on Saturday in Naltar, the hilly snow resort of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB). The match was played between the teams of PAF and GB Scouts. Players from both sides showed extraordinary skill but no team could score a goal within the stipulated time. Therefore the fate of the match lay with the penalty shootout, where Shahryar from team PAF scored the only goal of the match leading to their victory. -Pakistan makes a breakthrough between Afghanistan government and Taliban Pakistan has convinced the Afghan government and the Taliban to hold peace talks, Pakistani officials have been reported as saying. “It’s a huge success for Pakistan. We don’t know when the talks will be formally held but they have taken a step forward. They (the Afghan government and the Taliban) have agreed for peace talks. They will discuss terms and conditions in the coming days,” a Pakistani official was quoted as saying. The Afghan government also confirms developments for the launch of an intra-Afghan negotiation. -‘Germany looking to import manpower, Pakistan could be important contributor’ German Ambassador to Pakistan Martin Kobler on Saturday said his country was looking to import manpower by 2020 and Pakistan could prove to be an important contributor in this regard. He shared these remarks in a meeting with the Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development Zulfikar Abbas Bukhari in Islamabad to discuss investment opportunities in Pakistan. They also discussed carving out a plan to provide technical and vocational training to Pakistani youth. Advisor to Prime Minister on Youth Affairs Usman Dar and representatives of German Investment Bank were also present in the meeting. -Multan Railway Station revenue surges by Rs9.8 million Pakistan Railway Multan Cantonment station earned Rs77.9 million revenue during the current fiscal year of 2018-19. According to railway sources here on Saturday, Multan Cantt Station earned Rs9.8 million more revenue during the current fiscal year as it had earned Rs68 million during the last fiscal year 2017-18. Divisional Superintendent (DS) Railway Multan Amir Daud Pota lauded the performance of staff and urged them to work hard in order to bring more improvement in the performance. He said the income of railway was being increased day by day due to positive initiatives being taken by the department to ensure maximum facilities for passengers. -Supply vessels designed for deep-sea oil, gas exploration reach Karachi Supply vessels designed for exploration of oil and gas in deep-sea arrived at Karachi on Saturday. “Supply ships transporting equipment to “Mother of All Rigs” docked 230 km off the Karachi coast for exploration of oil and gas arrived at KPT (Karachi Port Trust),” tweeted Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi. “Best of luck to ExxonMobil and ENI when they start drilling. Let us all pray for a global discovery. From the looks of it, big news Inshallah.” The oil and gas giant Exxon Mobil resumed operations in Pakistan in November this year after a hiatus of 27 years. -COAS General Bajwa confirms death sentence to 22 hardcore terrorists Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Friday confirmed the death sentences of 22 hardcore terrorists involved in bombings and attacks that claimed the lives of 176 soldiers, law enforcers, and civilians, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said. According to a press release from the military’s media wing, the convicted terrorists “were involved in heinous offences related to terrorism, i.e. attacking Armed Forces/ Law Enforcement Agencies of Pakistan, exploding of Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Device to carry out sectarian killings, destruction of communication infrastructure, police check posts, educational institutions and killing of innocent civilians”. -Free kidney dialysis unit inaugurated in Pakistan A free kidney dialysis unit was inaugurated at Diabetic Centre Islamabad on Friday to improve health facilities for deserving patients. Addressing on this occasion, Member of Provincial Assembly Chudhary Muhammad Adnan said the government was committed to improve the health and major improvements in this area would be visible soon. He said the government was seriously concerned about the health issues and health was one of the top priorities of the present government. -Erstwhile FATA districts: KP government launches historic CPEC projects Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mahmood Khan has revealed establishment of economic zones in the new districts of the erstwhile FATA and PATA. He was working on the opening of road communication linking Afghanistan towards central Asia to make this region the economic hub in the wake of CPEC. He was presiding over a high level meeting at Chief Minister House Peshawar. Advisor to CM Abdul Karim, Head of SSU, Sahibzada Saeed, Secretary Industries, Commissioner Peshawar Shahab Ali Shah Attended said a hand out issued here on Saturday. -Russian has made multi billions dollars development and infrastructure projects offer in the field of oil, gas and power in Pakistan. Russian trade reoresentative Yuri Kozlov has said that Russia will construct $2 billion north and south gas pipeline from Karachi to Lahore and also engaged in a project at Jamshoro Power Plant for production of 600MW. “Russia had offered assistance in the expansion of Pakistan Steel Mills while Russia’s Gazprom has also shown interest in financing Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project,” he added. While handing over CDs carrying presentations of 200 Russian companies and details of the exhibitions scheduled to be staged in Russia throughout the year, he said all these Russian companies were keen to explore opportunities in Pakistan, whereas the business and industrial community of Karachi Chamber should look into the possibility of participating in numerous trade exhibitions in Russia . -PTI government to revise FTAs with major countries, ink new deals for export growth Prime Minister Advisor Abdul Razak Dawood has revealed to renegotiate Free Trade Agreements with the existing countries besides inking new FTAs. He said that a concept note of industrial policy has been prepared and the new industrial policy will promote other industries including engineering, chemical, information technology and agriculture to diversify exports. He further said that the new industrial policy would support strategic industries and strengthen import substitution industries. He added that the government has planned to increase exports by up to $50-$150 billion by facilitating export-oriented industries. To resolve the imbalance within FTAs, the government is working to revise the FTAs with all countries, and that the second phase of FTA with China would be completed by June 2019. He said the government was in discussion with many countries including China, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan and Turkey to get more market access for Pakistani products. Indonesia has provided zero-rated market access to Pakistan on 20 items. -PTI government decides to launch yet another economic initiative Pakistan has approved the launching of Panda Bond in Chinese-denominated Yuan currency. The federal cabinet approved a strategy to issue ‘Panda bonds’ in Chinese markets so that it can raise foreign exchange from global markets. At least one tranche is expected during the current fiscal year. These bonds will help the government diversify investor base of capital market issuance and provide a source of raising Renminbi. -Hydel, gas-based power production climbs At a time when Pakistan is plagued by water and gas crises, power production from the two sources climbed to the peak in November 2018, according to the power-sector regulatory authority. Hydel power plants made the largest contribution to the total electricity production in the month at 2,564 gigawatt hours (GWh), which was 16% more than 2,212GWh in the same month of previous year, the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) reported. Besides, its share in total power production rose to 34% in Nov 2018 compared to 31% in the corresponding month of last year, it added. Total power production surged 5% to 7,545.6GWh in Nov compared to 7,170.4GWh in the same month of last year. -Karachi motorcyclists to undergo 'strict' snap-checking from Tuesday The Sindh Police has formulated a new action plan after recent incidents of terrorism in the city. Sindh Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Dr Kaleem Imam has written letters to the Karachi police chief, Rangers and all zones’ deputy IGs asking them to run a special snap-checking campaign from January 1 to January 15. IGP said that it has been observed that motorcycles were being used in the target killing incidents and terrorist activities in the province, hence all motorcycles will be checked thoroughly from January 2019. -PM vows historic action against money laundering The largest ever clampdown against money laundering would begin soon to stop a $10 billion annual loss caused by the illegal practice, said Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday, while reassuring the nation that the crisis of confidence was over. The prime minister also saw a ‘softening’ International Monetary Fund (IMF) stance after improvement in Pakistan’s relations with all global powers that matter. He was speaking to a group of economic journalists at PM’s Office. Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry and Finance Minister Asad Umar were also present. The phase of “economic uncertainty” is over after the United Arab Emirates, China and Saudi Arabia announced assistance packages, said PM Khan. -Pakistan-Russia trade likely to reach $800m Bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia improved to $660 million in first 10 months of the ongoing calendar year and it was expected to go up to around $750-$800 million by year-end, revealed Russia Trade Representative Yury Kozlov. Speaking at a meeting at the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), Kozlov said although there was great potential of boosting the existing trade volume between the two countries, the increase had been gradual mainly due to a lack of direct banking channels. -Pakistan, Tajikistan work on eliminating double taxation Pakistan and Tajikistan are negotiating to eliminate double taxation in order to promote bilateral trade on a sustained basis, announced Tajikistan Ambassador Jononov Sherali. Speaking to members of the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), Sherali emphasised that both countries enjoyed good relations and bilateral linkages should be enhanced between business communities of the two sides. He pointed out that a delegation of Pakistan cement manufacturers had visited Tajikistan in 2013 and in that connection a cement unit was set up in the Central Asian country, which was not only catering to its domestic needs, but was also exporting surplus cement to Afghanistan. -Islamabad Police Starts an Interesting Initiative that Appreciates Good Drivers They have started a Good Citizen Patrol Unit that is aimed at appreciating law-abiding citizens of the capital city. To encourage good driving habits, they have started awarding good drivers with a ‘good citizen sticker’ along with coffee mugs and other gifts. Under this initiative, the police have dedicated a unit that patrols the roads of the capital on a daily basis. It takes into account the cars that are observing the proper laws. Whenever the police observes a person who is abiding by the traffic rules, it stops them and thanks them on the spot for being a ‘good citizen’. It further gives citizens a special ‘good citizen’ sticker to paste it on their car windshield along with the coffee mugs and other gifts. -Provincial Govt Gives Green Signal for Quetta Safe City Project The Balochistan government has given a go ahead on the Quetta Safe City Project (QSCP) , a project that is likely to cost Rs 2.28 billion. Balochistan Minister for Information Technology Sardar Abdul Rehman Khetran revealed the news to the Balochistan Assembly during its recent session. While speaking on a joint resolution by three opposition members, he said that Gwadar and other divisional and district headquarters will also get similar Safe City projects. He said that the launch of QSCP was overdue now and the project will start soon. Moreover, the joint resolution demanded that the Balochistan Assembly to be turned into an e-assembly just like the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly. -Free Transport Service Launched for Shelter Homes in Lahore The city of Lahore has set up a free transport service for residents of shelter homes. The provincial capital’s district administration started the free transport service for the residents of shelter homes including homeless and laborers. So far the service has been to set up to and from shelter homes set up by the government at five different places in Lahore. The district administration has set up makeshift shelter homes near bus terminals and railway stations. These shelters are situated at Data Darbar, Thokar Niaz Baig, Badami Bagh Sabzi Mandi, Lorri Adda, and Lahore Railway Station. The service will run between the surrounding areas and the shelter homes. A representative for the district administration said that the service would be available between 6am and 10pm. Based on the directives of the Lahore Deputy Commissioner Saleha Saeed, different assistant commissioners will supervise the operation of the free shuttle service. -Task Force Being Formed for Making Pakistan a Knowledge-Based Economy The government is giving greater emphasis on transforming Pakistan from an agriculture-based economy to a technology-driven and knowledge-based economy. For this purpose, a task force is being set up. Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar has said that greater emphasis on the promotion of science and technology that could provide innovative and creative solutions for progress and betterment of the society. The minister was talking to Dr Atta-ur-Rahman, who is a former federal minister for science and technology as well as the former chairman of the Higher Education Commission (HEC). Rahman pointed out that a national task force on technology-driven knowledge economy was being formed. The Prime Minister will head the task force while Dr Atta will be its vice chairman. -KPK Police to Use Computerized Records to Keep Check on Criminals The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police has taken another initiative to combat crimes and maintain peace in its jurisdiction. With the help from modern technological tools, the KPK Police will be maintaining a computerized database of all the nabbed criminals in its custody, making use of up-to-date data to maintain order and peace in society. Under the plan, the Peshawar police has digitized data for up to 981 criminals during the current year. These outlaws were set free after completing their jail terms. The KPK police have started maintaining the record of criminals involved in heinous crimes and those languishing in jails to check their movement even after release.
2018.12.27 01:57 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 57.
-PM Imran inaugurates shelter home in Islamabad Prime Minister Imran Khan inaugurated Panah Gah, a shelter home, established by the government for the homeless and needy people here at Tarlai area of Islamabad on Wednesday. The prime minister visited various sections of the shelter home, including the sleeping area, kitchen and dining area, besides the dispensary, which would cater to the primary medical needs of those using the facility. He expressed his satisfaction over the facilities provided at the shelter home and directed that efforts should be made to give ease to the homeless. -PM Imran Khan orders massive tax reforms The tax department has to prioritise the annual targets while focusing on medium to long-term measures and structural reforms to address existing issues in processes and mechanism. In the first phase, the federal cabinet has given the approval to separate policy and administration matters. Sources said that the government would introduce the Tax Policy Board that will consist of federal ministers related to commerce, finance, economic affairs along with parliamentarians and tax experts. On the other hand, the government in coming days is also likely to establish Tax Policy Unit in Ministry of Finance (MoF) consisting of a small group of economists and tax experts, who will act in advisory capacity to the government. -In pictures: Christmas being celebrated across Pakistan As the Christian community celebrates the festive occasion of the birth anniversary of Jesus Christ throughout Pakistan, we follow the Christmas festivities being celebrated in the true spirit of sharing happiness and joy with family members, loved ones and the entire nation. A number of celebrations and Christmas prayers are being held across the country on Tuesday. Christians started their day with ceremonies in churches amid beefed up security and prayed for country’s sovereignty and prosperity. The community members have decorated their homes and religious places with lights. Residential colonies were also decorated with twinkling lights and stars, and baubles such as bells, pine cones, apples, candies, tinsel and balloons bedecked trees, streets, houses and churches. -Federal government vows for technology driven and knowledge based economic development Planning Minister Khusro Bakhtyar has emphasized the need for technology driven and knowledge based economy to compete at international level. The Minister called upon promotion of science and technology to provide innovative and creative solutions for progress and betterment of society. -Cabinet committee on Energy meets: PM Imran Khan takes important decisions Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed to finalized the policy on renewable energy by end of January. He emphasized upon the need for timely and accurate estimations about demand and supply in the energy sector so as to avoid any interruption in energy supply. The Prime Minister was briefed about demand and supply situation in the power sector, the projections of petroleum and power division for the next six months, the existing energy mix, availability and utilization of indigenous. Similarly: PM directs authorities to finalise renewable energy policy by Jan 2019 -In a bold decision, PM Imran Khan orders immediate ban on import of furnace oil in Pakistan The Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE), which met here at the PM Office on Wednesday with Prime Minister Imran Khan in the chair, decided to immediately notify ban on any further import of furnace oil. Besides the import of furnace oil , the issue of production and storage of furnace oil by the local refineries was also discussed during the meeting. -Russia praises Pakistan as important regional player Pakistan and Russia have agreed to continue efforts for supporting reconciliation under an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process. Acknowledging Pakistan's efforts in the Afghan settlement, Russian Foreign Minister offered Russia 's support to bring stability in the region. Foreign Minister Qureshi said Pakistan greatly values its relations with the Russian Federation and expressed Pakistan's desire to forge a long-term, multidimensional partnership and friendship with Russia . -OGRA decides to end years old controversial policy The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) Wednesday said it was ending years’ old controversy and unnecessary prolonged litigation with the Sui gas companies, allowing them maximums of their claims against line losses viz-a-viz the UFG benchmark of 2.6 percent. The Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) had claimed a maximum of 2.44% UFG losses and OGRA had already allowed 1.57% in the FY 2012-13 to FY 2016-17. -Khazeena Dam in Balochistan completion date announced Khazeena Dam being constructed at the cost of Rs288.683 million is scheduled to be completed on April 24, 2020, as per the approved PC-1 of the project, an official of the Water Division told APP here on Wednesday. He said that Khazeena dam was being constructed on the Loe Lahara River of Solan Dargi, district Musakhel with a water storage capacity of 4,000 acre-feet. He said that the primary objective of Khazeena Dam was to provide water to the irrigated cultivable area of 4,800 acres as well as flood protection of downstream areas, ensuring water supply to lower riparian nearby Musakhel. -PTI government to launch yet another incentive scheme for higher growth rates Government will offer commercial and microfinance banks tax benefits on income they earn from one of its priority areas, reveals a policy document on the National Financial Inclusion Strategy for the next five years. Financial institutions will be charged 20% in tax instead of the higher current rate of 34% if they give loans to encourage growth in these priority sectors: agriculture (small farmers), small-and-medium enterprises, and low-cost housing. Commercial banks have been severely criticized for heavily investing in government securities instead of offering loans to the private sector, which helps an economy grow. To achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth, access to finance is considered critical, the government says. For its five-year term, the government has set a target of Rs1800 billion in agriculture loans. The government plans to include loans to 700,000 SMEs to ensure the sector constitutes 17% of total credit to the private sector. -Pakistan decides to privatise key power projects Federal government has decided to privatise key power projects, media has reported on Wednesday. The meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Privatization (CCOP) took the decision in this regard. CCOP meeting was held on Wednesday with Finance Minister Asad Umar in the chair. -Pakistan China to ink Trade Agreement-II Prime Minister's Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razzaq Dawood has said that efforts are being made to ensure greater market access for Pakistani products. Talking to media in Islamabad today (Wednesday), he said Trade Agreement-II is expected with China by June next year. The Advisor expressed the hope that China will open up its markets for Pakistani products. He said efforts are on to get access to Korean markets. -Pakistan e-commerce industry transactions hit highest level of history Pakistan’s e-commerce industry has hit historic high level of Rs 40 billion. According to statistics released by State Bank of Pakistan about digital transactions and interbank transactions, e-commerce industries witnessed almost a 100 percent growth for the year 2018. The sales for the fiscal year 2018 reached 40.1 billion rupees. Compared to last year’s sales, which were 20.7 billion, this is almost a 94 percent year on year growth. Similarly: E-Commerce in Pakistan Witnesses a Rapid Growth of 94% According to a report released by the State Bank of Pakistan, Pakistan’s e-commerce sales have witnessed a sharp rise of 93.7 percent in 2018. The main reason behind the better performance of the e-commerce sector is larger internet accessibility. The online market has seen a boom in this outgoing year because of the services sector. In fact, the services sector contributes 60 percent to the GDP. Its contribution was 52 percent last year. -Punjab to Set Up a Birth & Death Record System The government of Punjab is coming up with some initiatives that have been downplayed by the previous governments. The Punjab government has recently decided to launch Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) to supply death certificates in the regions of Punjab. Health Minister of Punjab, Dr Yasmin Rashid, introduced the process where the doctors working under CRVS will observe the cause of death and permit the issuance of death certificates in the province. The whole of birth and record system will be given to the local governments and National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA). Punjab government is collaborating with Federal Ministry for Planning and Development to train the masses at the University of Health Sciences (UHS). The initiative has been taken to bring a healthy atmosphere among the people. Health minister of Punjab claimed that there was no such policy for data about the causes of death in Punjab. -Pak Railways to Lay High-Speed Track Capable of Speeds Over 260kmph Pakistan Railways has decided to introduce a high-speed double track from Karachi to Peshawar in collaboration with China. However, the ministry is yet to decide the mode of financing for the project. Notably, the project is going to incur billions of rupees, according to the Minister for Railways. “We, with the help of China, will lay a double track from Karachi to Peshawar with the minimum speed of 160 kilometers per hour and a maximum of 260 if and when we get the go-ahead from the government,” says Sheikh Rasheed, Minister for Railways. He made this revelation while talking to media at the Karachi Cantt. Station. He was there to see off the first scheduled cargo train launched under public-private partnership on the Karachi-Lahore route. Sindh Governor Imran Ismail was also present at the occasion. -PCB to Invite South Africa to Play an ODI Series in Pakistan Pakistan Cricket Board (PBC) has intensified its effort to bring back top-notched international cricket to the country. Recently, the PCB has invited Cricket Australia to send its team to Karachi or Lahore for two one-day matches of its 5-matches series, which is scheduled in UAE in March next year. There are indications that CA may accept the PCB’s request. Media reports said that Cricket Australia is considering the request. Buoyed by the positive indications from Australia, the PCB has plans to also extend the same request to Cricket South Africa. According to media reports, PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani has left for South Africa on a mission to convince Cricket South Africa (CSA) to support the return of international cricket to Pakistan. -Karachi zoo to get more exotic animals in major revamp efforts The Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) has decided to make efforts to make the Karachi Zoo attractive for the people, especially children. The zoo’s boundary wall will be decorated with paintings of big animals, according to the plan, while sign boards will be placed containing names and information about all animals, birds and old trees. The environment of the zoo will be changed in a way that people who never visited the zoo before would also want to take their children there. -Australian experts due early next year Australian High Commissioner Margret Adamson called on water resources secretary to discuss the steps needed to be initiated for implementation of the actions agreed in a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on water resource management. Both sides agreed to name nominees for constituting a joint advisory committee and create annual work plan to achieve the objectives set out in the MoU. The high commissioner revealed that Australian experts from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) would visit Pakistan early next year. They will engage with provincial agriculture departments and also with the Ministry of Water Resources. Pakistan is facing acute water scarcity due to below average rainfall during monsoon season this year. In its latest seasonal forecast, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) asked the authorities concerned to use water reserves judiciously to meet the requirement of Rabi sowing season. -‘Industrialisation policy to be framed to boost exports’ Pakistan’s exports have remained restricted to textile but a comprehensive industrialisation policy is being planned now where focus will also be on engineering, chemical, information technology and agriculture sectors, revealed Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Industry Abdul Razak Dawood. Speaking to members of the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) on Tuesday, the adviser pointed out that over the last decade, many industrial units had been closed down and the country’s exports had also dropped from $25 billion to $20 billion. “It is a clear indication that we have ignored our manufacturing sector, which is deemed necessary for wealth and job creation,” he said. He announced that the government would fine-tune the ‘Made in Pakistan’ policy in light of proposals and recommendations made by the private sector.
2018.12.20 22:02 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 52.
-Minister targets hydrogen train for Pakistan The launch in Germany of a hydrogen-powered train has inspired Pakistan’s Railway minister to announce similar ambitions for his country. Railway Minister Shaikh Rashid, reacting to a tweet by German Ambassador to Pakistan Martin Kobler, posted on his twitter account that he also looks forward to running a similar train in Pakistan. In his tweet, Kobler had announced the first ‘hydrogen-powered’ train launched in Germany and termed it environment friendly as there would be less noise, less pollution and more efficiency. Shaikh Rashid retweeted the German Ambassador’s message advocating a “less noisy,” “environment-friendly” train that would change the entire tourism sector of Pakistan. -SBP reserves surge 10.85pc, stand at $8.05bn The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank increased by 10.85pc WoW, breaking a two-week losing streak, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday. Earlier, the reserves had been on a downward spiral for 14 successive weeks but financial assistance from Saudi Arabia provided much-needed support for the fast depleting reserves. The reserves had dropped to a four-and-a-half-year low, which raised concern about Pakistan’s ability to meet its financing requirements. However, the assistance from the kingdom pushed the reserves above $8 billion. Overall, liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $14,584.5 million. Net reserves held by banks amounted to $6,536.2 million. -Two arrested for harassing women on social media The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested two suspects for allegedly harassing women on the social media, in two separate actions. According to the FIA spokesman, the man named Aleem Ashraf posted obnoxious pictures of a woman, resident of Iqbal colony on a fake social media account. “The accused was arrested on the complaint of brother of the woman,” said FIA Spokesperson. Taking action over another complaint filed by a woman, resident of city’s area of Taj colony, the FIA team arrested accused Mubeen Nasir. -FBR issues FAQs for duty/taxes, registering mobile phone devices Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has responded to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding rates of duty and taxes and registration of mobile phones with newly introduced system by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA). -NAB recovers foreign currency worth millions in a raid from residence of top official The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) recovered from top official foreign currency worth millions of Rupees. As per media report, foreign currency worth million of rupees was recovered from the house of a top official of United Nations’ Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) here on Wednesday. The NAB , on a tip-off, raided residence of UN EPI top official in Rawalpindi. During operation, US $9000, UK £10,000 and other foreign currencies worth 20 million rupees were recovered. -Record number of foriegn tourists to arrive in Pakistan in summers: Report A record number of local and foriegn tourists are expected in Pakistan, it has been reported. Pakistan is expecting a record number of tourists visiting country citing several positive developments taking place following improvement in security situation including revival of British Airways operations. A close aide of Prime Minister Imran Khan and senior member of Federal Cabinet, Asad Umar stated that since Portugal has dropped all the travel advisories and the British Airways is starting Pakistan flights a record number of tourists is expected next summer in the country. -Pakistan IT Industry Exports can hit Rs 10 Billion milestone, according to this Group A session “How to Boost IT Economy to 10 Billion by 2023” was chaired by the Executive Director COMSATS and Pro-Chancellor of COMSATS University Islamabad (CUI), Prof.Dr. S.M. Junaid Zaidi. -Billions of dollars investment pour in 100 years old Railways system of Pakistan Minister for Pakistan Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed Wednesday said Railways has finalized a plan to upgrade its track from Karachi to Peshawar via Lahore in the next five years under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)project. The minister said Railways track from Lahore to Peshawar via Rawalpindi will be dualised in the next five years. 730 kilometer track has been rehabilitated/ partially rehabilitated through Complete Track Renewal, Sleeper Renewal and Rail Renewal under different PSDP Projects, he added. -ADB to provide $2.3 billion program lending facility during three years Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide program lending facility to Pakistan to the tune of $2.3 billion in the next three years, starting 2019. The program lending will be provided in the spheres of future energy sector development, trade and competitiveness and capital market development. Tomoyuki Kimura, Director General Strategy, Policy and Review Deptt, ADB said at a meeting with Finance Minister Asad Umar on Wednesday. DG ADB apprised the finance minister about salient features of the ADB 2030 strategy. He dilated on different new lending products including special policy based lending. Discussion also focused on private sector lending. -PTI government saves $1 billion in current account deficit in FY 2018-19 PTI government has saved approximately $1 billion in the first five months of the FY 2019 in the current account deficit. Current account deficit nosedived 10.59% to $6.090 billion compared to $6.812 billion in the corresponding period of last year. During November, the increase in current account deficit was attributable to a shortfall in remittances as they plunged 19.58% to $1.608 billion compared to $1.92 billion in October, a decline in exports of 8% ($164 million) and imports fell by 9.4% ($446 million). -‘Indiscriminate accountability to build conducive business environment’ pecial Assistant to the Prime Minister on Accountability Mirza Shehzad Akbar has said that the business community is the central plank for the economic development of Pakistan and the ongoing accountability process would promote conducive business environment as it would promote transparency, reduce corruption and improve ease of doing business in the country. He observed this while addressing the business community at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) on Wednesday. Shehzad Akbar said that the purpose of accountability was not hunting and imprisoning people, but was aimed at promoting good governance and transparency in the country. He said state failure in governance in last 70 years and moral degradation in society promoted corruption in Pakistan, adding that the incumbent government was focused on promoting rule of law and due process for accountability in order to promote clean governance. -PTI government gets a big international offer for construction of 20 lakh low cost Houses PTI government receives a big offer from international companies for atleast 2 million Houses construction. Companies from the UAE and China have offered to help the PTI government for its “Naya Pakistan Housing Programme. A Chinese company has offered to construct 2 million houses in Pakistan. Some UAE companies have also shown interest in investing in the government’s housing project. Officials from both countries have met Pakistan officials and concluded initial talks over the project. The government wants to begin the work on the housing project within the next three months. Similarly: Foreign Companies Offer to Construct 2 Million Homes for Naya Pakistan Housing Program International companies from China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have shown keen interest to invest in the project. Media reports said that the companies have offered to invest for construction of at least two million housing units under the programme. The flagship project, if materialized, is likely to generate large-scale economic activity in real estate and construction sectors and their (over 50) allied industries. The project is deemed key to PTI’s promise to generate 10 million jobs for the jobless in the country during its stint in power. A Chinese company has offered to construct two million houses in Pakistan under the programme. Sources said that some UAE companies have also shown interest in the government’s housing project. -Bakhtiar seeks sustainable partnerships with financial institutions, Chinese firms Planning, Development and Reform Minister Makhdum Khusro Bakhtiar has invited Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and Chinese corporate leaders to forge a sustainable long-term partnership with Pakistan aimed at financing the projects that contribute to the overall economic growth of the country. He extended this invitation on Wednesday while meeting with AIIB President Jin Ligun and leadership of the Chinese companies, including China Railway Construction Corporation, Huawei, Norinco and others, on the sideline of China Pakistan Economic Corridor’s (CPEC) 8th Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting, scheduled to be held tomorrow (Thursday). The minister would co-chair the JCC meeting with the vice chairman of National Reform Commission of China. In a meeting at the AIIB Headquarters, Bakhtiar said that Pakistan had received a solid investment in the energy generation portfolio; however, now Pakistan is encouraging projects based on hydel or renewable resources. -Renowned international companies express interest to invest in Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan says foreign investors and renowned international companies are investing in Pakistan due to efforts of the incumbent government. He was talking to a delegation of Members of National Assembly hailing from Bahawalpur Division who called on him in Islamabad today. -China to train Pakistani youth for CPEC projects Muhammad Usman Dar, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs, called on H.E. Yao Jing, Ambassador of People’s Republic of China to Pakistan, to explore various opportunities for youth development. H.E. Mr. Yao Jing congratulated Muhammad Usman Dar on his nomination as a Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs, and hoped that with his guidance and support both China and Pakistan can work together for tangible results in youth development. He shed light on various Chinese initiatives for the development of social sector in Pakistan, including exchange programme for Pakistani youth and scholarships by the Chinese Government and universities for Pakistani students. He briefed on the establishment of proposed vocational training center under CPEC for the training of Pakistani youth in high-tech industry skills as per need of CPEC projects. Similarly: -‘Skill development in Pakistan among China’s top priorities’ Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs Usman Dar called on Ambassador of China to Pakistan Yao Jing to explore various opportunities for youth development. Yao Jing congratulated Usman Dar on his nomination as a Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs and hoped that with his guidance and support, both China and Pakistan can work together for tangible results in youth development. -Special benches constituted to decide tax-related cases Special tax benches have been constituted in the Supreme Court of Pakistan and the Lahore High Court for hearing of tax-related cases, it was learnt on Wednesday. The Federal Board of Revenue had earlier provided the details of pending cases to the Supreme Court and the Lahore High Court with the request to formulate special tax benches. The board also issued special instructions to the field formations to ensure that the departmental cases are properly prepared and represented before the courts when these are fixed for the hearing. Special bench at the Supreme Court, comprising Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Yahya Afridi, started hearing of cases around the middle of October 2018 while special bench at the Lahore High Court, comprising Justice Shahid Jamil Khan and Justice Asim Hafeez, have been hearing tax-related cases since Oct 23, 2018. -Pakistan makes a new offer to AIIB over Mohmand, Dasu Dam Projects Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar on Wednesday invited Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and Chinese corporate leaders to forge a sustainable long-term partnership with Pakistan aimed at financing projects that contribute to overall economic growth of the country. AIIB could explore opportunities of partnership in Dasu and Mohmand Dam projects which are in the planning stage, proposed the minister. “We are introducing integrated energy policy and look for investment in transmission line projects and up-gradation of the distribution system. -10,000 houses under Naya Pakistan Housing Programme to kick off The government will start construction of ten thousand houses in six districts of Punjab under Naya Pakistan Housing Programme from the next month as the layout plan has been completed. According to a source, Faisalabad has been identified for the pilot project of the programme, but it has been now extended to five other cities including Sialkot, Lodhran, Chiniot, Bahawalnagar (Chishtian) and Muzaffargarh. The first phase regarding construction of 10,000 houses would start in the beginning of the next year. Low income group would be given priority for this project and work will start from the next month. -Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank to construct projects worth billions of dollars in Pakistan President of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank said that projects worth 1.68 billion dollars in different sectors are being financed by his bank in Pakistan. He vowed to support transmission line, hydel energy generation and other projects that could support Pakistan's economic growth. He informed that a project to support SMEs was already approved and this investment would be enhanced with the passage of time. -Pak Army Rebuilt This Earthquake Damaged Area Into A Model Village [Photos] Pakistan Army has rebuilt a village of Awaran district’s Mashkai tehsil that got damaged in the 2013 earthquake, turning it into a model village. Mashkai is located along the northern fringes of Central Makran range. Its two villages, Nojko and Jebri, were the epicenter of the said earthquake that entirely eroded its socio-economic fiber. As is usually the case, the army was called in for relief operations and improvement in the security situation. Along with that, it also planned to construct a model village to settle the displaced families. The construction work started in May 2018 to make a village sprawling over 0.056678km2. The project came to completion in a mere seven months. The Jebri Model Village has 75 houses with allied facilities including mosque, school, market, solar-based electricity, and water supply scheme. It also has a sports facility and a play area for kids. -PM Imran to break ground of Mohmand Dam in January 2019, says Faisal Vawda The groundbreaking ceremony of Mohmand Dam will be held in the first week of January 2019, said Faisal Vawda the minister for Power Resources. In a press conference here Wednesday, Vawda said Prime Minister Imran Khan will be the chief guest of the ceremony. “Chief Justice of Pakistan and other high profile guests have also been invited,” He said and added that “Opening will be historic for the country’s future water needs.” Vawda went on to say said 800 MW of electricity will be produced from this project and it will also provide abundant water to the residents of Peshawar. He said the financing of over Rs 300 billion so far has been arranged from indigenous resources and no foreign funding is part of it, Radio Pakistan reported. -[Punjab Set to Regulate Prices & Grade Private Hospitals]https://propakistani.pk/2018/12/19/punjab-set-to-regulate-prices-grade-private-hospitals/?utm_source=all_users&utm_medium=notif) The Punjab Healthcare Commission has proposed a pricing mechanism for private hospitals in a bid to prevent overcharging and negligence. For the first time ever, a healthcare commission has called out the doctor-hospital cartel in Pakistan. The PHC has assessed the 17 leading private hospitals in Lahore. It did so on a Supreme Court directive given after a suo motu case regarding alleged overcharging, careless attitude and negligence, and lack of facilities in private hospitals of the provincial capital. The PHC has submitted the report in the apex court, which documents the overcharging that is way higher than a fair profit. The report also includes the proposed charges, which will come into effect after the SC directions. Once approved by the SC, the charges will be applicable across the province. -NBI Launches a Digital Platform to Discuss Pakistan’s Upcoming IT Policy NBI (Nation Building Initiative), is a society formed to unify the nation through social harmony and economic growth. Its founding member, Arifullah Hussaini, is the President of the initiative. NBI’s Vision is to build an educated and prosperous Pakistan by promoting the implementation of our Constitution. NBI has launched its first ever digital platform in Pakistan that is enabling the people of the country to give their suggestions on the IT Policy of Pakistan. This initiative is a stepping stone to actively involve the nation, helping the Prime Minister’s IT Task Force to formulate the IT Policy of the nation. We are using social media and our web forum, NBI Forum to get suggestions on various issues from all over the world. Once the audience is established, this digital platform will allow us to continue seeking feedback on various matters from key participants that are eager and willing to participate in taking the nation forward. Not only will we be able to get suggestions but this will also become the pathway of communication with the people on various issues encouraging healthy discussions and debate. -Peshawar’s BRT Will Have Trained Staff to Prevent Harassment of Women: ADB The Peshawar Sustainable Bus Rapid Transit Corridor Project will have trained staff to deal with harassment incidents, as 90% of women reported feeling unsafe using existing bus services, says Asian Development Bank (ADB). The ADB released, “Gender Bond investor brief update”, highlighting ADB’s first gender bond issued in 2017 and projects that promote gender equality in Pakistan and the People’s Republic of China. The brief states that ADB is supporting the “Pakistan: Peshawar Sustainable Bus Rapid Transit Corridor Project”, with $335 million. Measures to reduce sexual harassment risks for women passengers are embedded in a project that ADB committed to in 2017 for the development of the first bus rapid transit (BRT) corridor in the northern city of Peshawar. -Govt. plans mini budget next month The government is likely to introduce a mini budget next month in order to generate revenue and overcome economic challenges, Finance Minister Asad Umar said this at a meeting of Senate Standing Committee on Finance on Wednesday. He said that the decision would be taken after due consultation. He said duties will be enhanced while some of the duties on raw materials will be reduced to promote exports. “we planned to table the bill before the parliament by middle of next month, however, final decision will be taken after taking all due measures”, he said. Regarding exchange rate, he said in December dollar was at Rs105 and in July it was at Rs 128. During August to December dollar become costlier by 10 percent”, he said. -Restaurants beware! The Sindh Food Authority is coming The Sindh government announced on Wednesday that the Sindh Food Authority (SFA) will start a crackdown against eateries serving substandard food. This is the third such crackdown announced by the provincial government since the law, to provide for the safety and standards of food, was passed in March 2017. Former food ministers, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, Syed Nasir Hussain Shah and even the incumbent Food Minister Hari Ram had pledged action earlier but it was to no avail. Now, Sindh chief minister’s advisor on information, law and anti-corruption, Barrister Murtaza Wahab has come up with a new promise of action. He advised all restaurants and hotels owners to improve the standards of their food items. He also stressed on compliance with hygienic conditions. Failure to do so would lead to the closure of the restaurants and hotels and arrest of the owners, he added. -Govt offers IMF Rs190b in new taxes for bailout Pakistan has offered the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to impose Rs190 billion worth of additional taxes to restrict budget deficit to Rs2.2 trillion and to further increase interest rates and devalue currency to increase foreign exchange reserves to $13 billion. These aggressive policy measures have potential to stifle economic growth rate, slowing its pace to only 3.9% in this fiscal year and stoking inflation. A major inflationary measure will be increase in sales tax rates on locally sold textile, leather, surgical, sports and carpets goods, which are currently charged at lower than standard rates. The petroleum products will also be subject to further taxation. The fiscal and monetary proposals are part of the draft memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies that Pakistan shared with the IMF for securing a bailout package, sources in the Finance Ministry told The Express Tribune. The plan also includes over Rs300 billion anticipated earnings from sale of two government-owned LNG-fired power plants. -NIC Islamabad Opens Applications for 5th Cohort of Startups The National Incubation Center, Pakistan’s largest incubation Center, will start accepting applications for its fifth cohort from 20th December 2018. Applications for the fifth cohort will remain open until January 20th, 2018. So far, over 78 startups have been incubated at the NIC and two cohorts have already graduated from the program. Innovative startups working in diverse fields are encouraged to apply for the program, especially those working in the fields of Fin-Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT), Ed-Tech, Agriculture, Augmented and Virtual reality and E-commerce among others. With its long-term commitment to diversity and inclusiveness, NIC provides equal opportunity to people from all walks of life and takes pride in supporting women entrepreneurs and differently-abled individuals through its endeavors. -PTI government announces uniform education policy across Pakistan Minister for Education and Professional Training, Shafqat Mahmood has said that promotion of education and dispensation of justice are the significant elements for development of the society. -Pakistan Railways take two new initiatives PR is launching a new and updated smartphone app to help users purchase tickets online and track the timings of their trains. According to sources, the app will make use of special trackers to provide accurate speed and location of trains to users. Railways have been internally testing trackers on a select few trains to gauge the performance of the app and its tracking features. -OICCI stresses need for digital revolution in Pakistan The Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI) on Thursday unveiled its ‘Recommendations on National Programme for Digital Transformation’ report at a media launch in Islamabad. The OICCI members, who are among the top 200 foreign investors belonging to 35 countries, including 50 Fortune 500 companies, have shared their international experience and expertise in presenting a concise analysis of the current digital landscape and recommended a forward-looking specific action plan to fast-track Pakistan to a respectable level of digital transformation. The report has already been presented to Prime Minister Imran Khan during a meeting on December 9. Commenting on digital transformation, OICCI President Irfan Wahab Khan said, “The advancements in digital technology are inspiring innovation globally. Being among the fastest growing mobile markets in the world, Pakistan has immense potential to become a global leader in digital innovation. -KSE-100 index gains 173 points on institutional buying The benchmark KSE-100 index of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) gained 173 points on Thursday owing to institutional buying. The index closed at 38,237 points as against 38,063 points yesterday, showing an increase of 173 points. Analysts at Arif Habib said that KSE-100 index move positive today, which was caused perhaps by the withering away of the expectation of foreign selling due to FTSE rebalancing. -PTCL upgrades major exchanges PTCL has transformed major exchanges in Hyderabad including Qasimabad and City Hyderabad under its Network Transformation Project (NTP), said a release on Thursday. NTP covers more than 100 exchanges across Pakistan. PTCL has already upgraded 53 exchanges in 12 cities including Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Hyderabad, Islamabad, Karachi, Kharian, Lahore, Multan, Peshawar, Quetta, Rawalpindi and Sialkot. On the occasion, Javed Ahmed Shaikh, Regional General Manager, PTCL, Hyderabad, said, “PTCL’s endeavor to provide seamless broadband connectivity to all our customers across Pakistan is now possible through the Network Transformation Project. The customers residing in the transformed exchanges in Hyderabad can now enjoy high speed unlimited internet, which is also reliable.” -Pakistan Railways to dualize Karachi-Peshawar main track Pakistan Railways has rehabilitated and reconstructed around two hundred and thirty bridges across the country to ensure smooth trains operation besides reducing the travel duration. According to an official of Railways Ministry around eighty-six percent of railways bridges are more than 100 years old but all bridges are safe for train operation due to effective maintenance. He said a plan has been finalized to upgrade its track from Karachi-Peshawar via Lahore in the next five years under China Pakistan Economic Corridor project. -Saudi Arabia Crown Price Mohammad Bin Salman is arriving in Pakistan, plan finalised Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman is arriving in Pakistan in February, it had been revealed after federal cabinet meeting. Info Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Crown Princes of UAE and Saudi Arabia will visit Pakistan next month and in February respectively. Similarly: UAE’s Mohammed bin Zayed, Saudi crown prince to visit Pakistan in January: Fawad Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan and Saudi Arabia’s Mohammad bin Salman will visit Pakistan in January next year, said Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry on Wednesday. "Prime Minister Imran Khan spoke to Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan and Saudi Arabia’s Mohammad bin Salman on the telephone. The two leaders will be coming to Pakistan in January,” Chaudhry told media persons after federal cabinet’s meeting. -Major headway reported in South Punjab Province creation Both the opposition parties PML N and PPP have assured the federal government over support for the South Punjab Province. -Pakistan and Turkey vow for joint defence production Turkish National Defence Minister, Hulusi Akar Thursday called on Federal Minister for Defence Production Zubaida Jalal and discussed issues of mutual interests, especially the avenues in defence cooperation. -Pakistan and China ink yet another accord over CPEC Pakistan and China on Thursday signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) to further expand cooperation in diverse fields during the 8th Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting of China-Pakistan- Economic Corridor (CPEC). According to the details, a Pakistani delegation headed by Minister for Planning and Development Khusro Bakhtiar and Chinese delegation attended the 8th JCC meeting of CPEC held in Beijing. Both the delegations agreed to form a framework for socio-economic progress and decided to enhance economic ties between the two countries. -Asad Umar directs FBR to implement ‘National Single Window’ system Chairing the first meeting of a steering committee on Thursday, Finance Minister Asad Umar approved key decisions to enable the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Customs’ Wing ensure timely implementation of the ‘National Single Window’ system in Pakistan. The minister was informed that the system would emerge as the overarching umbrella to automate public sector entities dealing with cross-border trade, providing an integrated single interface with the private sector to carry out imports, exports and transit trade. This will substantially improve Pakistan’s ranking in ‘ease of doing business’ besides enabling the country to comply with its commitment under the Trade Facilitation Agreement of the World Trade Organisation. The National Single Window, to be known as ‘WinPak’ (Window Pakistan), will help develop the country’s initiative for its electronic logistics platform, which the finance minister said should be done within the next three years. -US companies show interest to invest in upstream E&P activities A group of USA companies comprising of Alpha Petroleum Services of USA and withholding company RigMax, headed by their Chief Executive Officer, Truman Wright visited Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) office on Thursday. The group met PPL Managing Director Saeed Ullah Shah and discussed joint collaboration with PPL, said a statement. They expressed their interest to invest in upstream E&P activities in Pakistan. MD – PPL welcomed them and gave a brief overview of E&P Sector in Pakistan. He specifically mentioned huge Shale and Tight gas / oil potential in the country. He emphasized that the environment for investment in E&P Sector is very conducive and highlighted the potential of unexplored onshore Frontier basin including Balochistan and shallow and deep water offshore basins.
2018.12.18 00:47 FashBasher1Some news you may have missed out on part 50.
Can you believe it? I've made 50 of these things. -Minor boy facing life sentence acquitted in drug smuggling case A 13-year-old boy, who was facing life imprisonment in a case pertaining to smuggling drugs, was acquitted by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday. The verdict was issued by a two-judge high court bench, comprising IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan. -Land information to be available on internet soon, says KDA chief The IT department of the Karachi Development Authority (KDA) is working on re-engineering of its systems after which citizens would be able to get information about land in Karachi on the internet while at their homes. KDA Director General Samiuddin Siddiqui said this as he was addressing an event, titled ‘Future of Industries in Pakistan’, organised by a think tank. Siddiqui had been invited to the event as the chief guest. The KDA DG announced that the authority would announce a housing scheme for the citizens next year. The residents of Karachi would be facilitated in every way, he said. Siddiqui maintained that Karachi was the economic hub of the country and industries needed to be flourished in the city as it would generate employment for the youth. -Airbnb gains traction in Pakistan and no one has noticed A major chunk of Pakistan’s population is well aware of the online ride-hailing apps like Uber and Careem. However, a similar mobile app has quietly emerged in Pakistan and the overwhelming majority of people are unaware of its existence. The app goes by the name of Airbnb and it books homes, lodges and resthouses for staying. In the past few years, Airbnb has gained popularity in Pakistan. However, the company has not officially launched its application in the country because of which, the prices are in US dollars for homes in Pakistan. A spokesperson at AirDNA said “Total Airbnb listings in Pakistan have increased by 227% over the last year, with the ratio of entire homes and private rooms roughly remaining the same. However, the revenue per available rental has actually decreased over the same period, suggesting that there is currently not quite as much demand for Airbnb in the country as there is supply.” -SBP launches incentive scheme for home remittances State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Monday announced incentive scheme for marketing of home remittances. The central bank said in order to encourage domestic banks/microfinance banks/exchange companies providing home remittance disbursement services, a performance based scheme has been developed to enhance their marketing/promotional/awareness efforts for home remittance products and services. The Government of Pakistan (GOP) shall reimburse these expenses through SBP. Home remittances exceeding 15 percent growth in FY19 compared with the levels achieved in FY18: Re 1 per each incremental USD mobilized over 15 percent growth. -Agreements worth $260 million signed at 14th Build Asia Exhibition The three-day mega event of 14th Build Asia Exhibition, successfully concluded in Karachi on Monday, as it facilitated the signing of agreements worth $260 million between many local and foreign companies participating in this mega event. The event, held at the Karachi Expo Center from December 15 to 17, is the largest exhibition of construction, real-estate and housing industry, held annually organized by E-Commerce Gateway Pakistan. Around 70,000 people visited the three – day exhibition where local and foreign companies showcased products related to construction and housing industries. Two big companies from China have shown interest to make investment in Pakistan. A company Yuanda Group has shown interest to invest in Prime Minister’s low cost housing schemes. The company has planned pre-fabricated housings and China Speed system for Pakistan and this regard it held meetings with Sindh Governor Imran Ismail and Mayor Karachi Waseem Akhtar. -Pakistan, China sign MoU to promote bilateral trade and investment China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), Shenyang Sub-Council and Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) Monday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to promote bilateral trade and investment between the two countries. ICCI President Ahmed Hassan Moughal and CCPIT-Shenyang Sub-Council President Zhao Kai signed the memorandum. According to the MoU, both sides agreed to keep constant contact and make efforts to promote bilateral trade and economic cooperation between Pakistan and China. They agreed to exchange regularly market information to explore new possibilities for enhancing business cooperation between their members. -KCCI, USAID to organize SME Activity on Dec 19 President Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KCCI) Junaid Esmail Makda will preside over Small & Medium Enterprises Activity (SMEA) on December 19, 2019 Wednesday being organized jointly with United States Agency for International Development (USAID). USAID SMEA is a five-year project that is supporting Pakistan in SME-led economic growth to help create jobs, foster entrepreneurship and contribute to increased GDP. As a part of the United States Government’s long-term commitment to helping Pakistanis secure a more prosperous future by increasing household incomes and employment, nurturing competitive small and medium enterprises (SMEs), expanding trade and investment, and creating more rewarding business opportunities, SMEA is working towards improving the enabling environment for private sector-led growth. -Pakistan, Turkey sign agreement to curb money laundering, terror financing Pakistan and Turkey on Monday agreed to expand bilateral cooperation at all levels for tracing properties of Pakistanis bought through money laundering and other illegal channels of money transfer, while also deciding to work in tandem to choke down terror-financing through all possible measures. The agreement was reached during the meetings of Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu with Prime Minister Imran Khan and Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Khan Afridi separately. A well-placed source in the federal government informed Pakistan Today that the Turkish minister also informed Pakistan that the Turkish government would continue its support to Pakistan at all international forums. “The dignitary, who is heading a high-level delegation to Pakistan, told the prime minister that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would visit Pakistan next month along with his key cabinet ministers to take the bilateral cooperation between Pakistan and Turkey to the next level,” the source said. Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu also extended an invitation to Prime Minister Imran Khan to visit Turkey which was accepted by the prime minister,” the source added. -Pakistan exports to China register significant increase in FY 2018-19 Pakistan exports to China have registered significant increase during the first quarter of FY 2018-19.The country’s export of goods to China during the first quarter of the fiscal year 2018-19 increased by 17.75 percent to US$430.3 million against the export of goods worth $353.892 million in the same period of the preceding year. The import of goods from China also witnessed an increase of 10.3 percent as it rose to $10.384 billion in the first quarter of the current fiscal year from $9.314 billion in July-September (2017-18), said latest data released by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). -SBP Launches a Survey to Find Out Issues Faced by Remittance Senders & Receivers The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has launched a survey on Pakistan remittances in collaboration with Pakistan Remittance Initiative (PRI). The survey aims to enhance remittances inflows through ascertaining issues being faced by senders and beneficiaries. The survey has two parts for senders and beneficiaries and looks to ascertain issues encountered in remitting and receiving remittances from various formal banking and informal channels. The central bank designed a survey to inquire about glitches in the banking system including the exchange rate difference, long queues, hectic documentation, heavy charges and difficulties faced by senders and beneficiaries through banking channels. The survey also asks beneficiaries about the quality of services provided by banks, money transfers and exchange companies including the ease of remitter, low receiving limits from formal channels, non-cooperative banking staff, instant, and home delivery. -PTI government launches yet another new initiative in KP PTI government has decided to initiate another health programme titled as ‘Ilaj Sahulat Plan’ (treatment facilitation plan) as a pilot project in the province. The Plan will be launched in four districts of the province as a pilot project. If it proves to be successful, then it will be extended to other parts of the province. The new plan is being launched by the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government in association with the National Rural Support Programme (NRSP) and State Life insurance company, said Adviser to K-P Chief Minister on Education Ziaullah Bangash while addressing an inaugural ceremony for the plan in Kohat on Sunday. -Government working to facilitate small, medium industry: PM Khan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday reiterated his government’s resolve to facilitate small and medium industry and exporters of the country. Addressing the 42nd award ceremony of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Islamabad, the premier said both are the backbone of commerce and trade in any country. He said obstacles in the way of doing business will be removed to give boost to small and medium enterprises. He said several steps have already been taken to facilitate the exports industry. Mr Khan said the nation needs to change its mindset regarding the business or setting up industry in Pakistan. He said the attitude of bureaucracy towards the business sectors will also be changed and it would need to remove bottlenecks in the way of doing business. The Prime Minister said increased prosperity will come into the country through commerce and industry. -Chinese Package details to IMF: Finance Minister makes important announcement Finance Minister Asad Umar has revealed that Pakistan has shared complete details of Chinese Package to International Monetary Fund. The details for Chinese package has officially been submitted to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), said Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday. Mr Umar while talking to media aboard a flight from Karachi to Islamabad informed about State Bank of Pakistan’s monetary and fiscal policies and underlined the supplementary budget will assist in improving the fiscal deficit. -Federal government decides to punish non tax filers Pakistan has one of the lowest tax-to-GDP ratios in the world, around 12%, because tax evasion is rampant in the country. Therefore, the government has compiled lists of high net worth individuals, a database of more than 700,000, who are evading taxes and 3,100 of them have already been issued notices. These are resourceful people who have purchased properties worth Rs20 million, bought 1800 cc automobiles and earned rental incomes of Rs10 million a year, but didn’t file their income tax returns. Non-filers, people who don’t file their income tax returns regardless of whether they pay tax or not, will be penalised, Federal Finance Minister Asad Umar had said during a session of the National Assembly in October. The government is trying to make life difficult for non-filers. -International Kabbadi tournament being held in Pakistan International Gold Cup Kabaddi tournament would be played at Iqbal Stadium Faisalabad from January 3 to 7. According to Muhammad Tayyab Gilani,spokesman of Divisional Kabaddi Association said Monday a total 15 teams from across the country would participate in the tournament. Iran has confirmed its participation. -Pakistan and Egypt decide to enhance defence and military collaboration Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa held high profile meetings in Egypt . COAS reached Egypt on an official visit Monday, where he called on General Mohamed Zaki, Commander in Chief of Egyptian Armed Forces and Minister of Defence & Military Production and Lieutenant General Mohamed Farid Hegazy, Chief of Staff of the Egyptian Armed Forces. Both the sides agreed to increase bilateral cooperation in multiple fields including joint ventures, defence production, training and intelligence. They also agreed to improve cooperation for regional peace and stability, the ISPR statement added. The military chief also met Sheikh Ahmed Al-Tayeb, Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar. Grand Sheikh commended the efforts of Pakistan Army in eliminating the scourge of terrorism from the country. He also appreciated issuance of ‘Paigham-e-Pakistan’ fatwa on the issues arising from extremism by religious scholars of all schools of thoughts in Pakistan. -PITB to Launch Prison Management App in Punjab’s Jails The Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) has decided to introduce a Prison Management Information System (PMIS) application at the prisons in Punjab. In the first phase, the app will be used in six jails in the province. This info comes from a PITB team’s presentation to Punjab’s Prisons Minister Zawar Hussain Waraich and Inspector General (IG) Prisons Mirza Shahid Saleem Baig. The team apprised that the decision was in line with the government’s 100-day plan. The department has decided to expand it to six jails after the app’s successful run in its pilot phase. Moreover, IG Prisons maintained that the prison records need to be updated to strengthen the criminal justice system. He said that the PMIS has been developed for this very purpose. -PM Imran says supporting farmers top priority of government Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that supporting farmers and assisting them in adopting modern practices was among the top priorities of the government. The Prime Minister emphasized upon the need for revamping of the research centers involved in seed registration so as to bring focus to their work. The Prime Minister was chairing a meeting on the challenges being faced by the country in cotton sector and the way forward towards uplifting the agriculture sector. He said approved setting up of a working group, headed by the Minister for National Food Security, to revamp existing seed registration institutes in order to bring about qualitative improvement in their output. A working group comprising of private sector seed companies and government sector regulators would also be constituted to simplify seed certification system and to find solution which ensures that the farmers are able to sift between the good and the bad varieties and companies. -PM Imran meets Turkish interior minister Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday met the Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu and discussed bilateral ties with the visiting delegation. The meeting, held at Prime Minister Office in Islamabad, was also attended by State Minister for Interior Shehryar Afridi. Soylu conveyed felicitations on behalf of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to Imran for assuming office. Update -Turkish Interior Minister delivers important message of President Tayyip Erdogan for PM Imran Khan Prime Minister Imran Khan held an important meeting with the visiting Turkish Interior Minister who delivered important message of President Tayyip Erdogan for the Pakistani PM. The prime minister expressed satisfaction over the upward trajectory of Pak-Turkish bilateral relations and extended invitation to Turkish President and Turkish leadership to visit Pakistan. -US softens stand on IMF deal with Pakistan Pakistan has abandoned its planned economic diplomacy with US as the Trump administration has softened its viewpoint for Pakistan’ expected bailout package from International Monetary Fund (IMF), a top official at Finance Ministry told The News. Earlier, the US wanted IMF to impose strict terms and conditions on Pakistan for $6-7 billion bailout package, but with recent letter of US President to Prime Minister Imran Khan seeking Pakistan role in bringing Taliban at dialogue table has changed the scene as Premier Imran Khan had responded positively and announced to play his role in Afghan peace. Earlier, Pakistan’s financial managers had a plan to initiate economic diplomacy with the US to help soften terms and conditions IMF authorities had placed before financial managers’ team of PTI government. At the beginning, the Fund had asked PTI government to bring down budget deficit to just over 2.5 percent of the GDP in next three years knowing the fact at present the fiscal deficit hovers at 6.6 percent of the GDP. This condition was tough and now IMF authorities have stated to be showing flexibility in the said demand, but the official said that exact figure about the fiscal deficit is yet to be finalised. To a question the official said that Pakistan and IMF have substantially made progress positively and the bailout package would be inked sometime in the month of January. He said Pakistan and IMF will be well prepared for the meeting of Board of Governors — the highest decision making body of the Fund. -Smart Infrastructure: World leading tech giant arrives in Pakistan with huge Investment Whale Could, the strategic partner of Ali Baba Group, is about to land in Pakistan along with an investment of $70 million, spreading over the next two to three years. Whale Cloud CEO Ben Zhou called upon Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui Federal Minister of IT and Telecom Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui yesterday to consider the opportunities and investment climate in Pakistan. -China likely to provide US$ two bln to Pakistan: sources China will deposit US$ two billion with Pakistan to help the country in its balance of payment crisis, Ministry of Finance. The expected two billion dollars are likely to be received in a single tranche this month, the sources further said. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) also expected to provide a similar package to Pakistan including the loan and deferred payment facility for the oil. Finance Minister Asad Umar in a recent interview had said that Pakistan’s balance of payment crisis comes to an end. He also said that China and UAE are expected to extend financial support to Pakistan. Update -China & UAE to Deposit $5 Billion in Pakistan’s Foreign Exchange Reserves: Report China is expected to deposit $2 billion in Pakistan reserves during the month of December and more importantly the economic diplomacy with the UAE is also going to show some results as UAE is likely to provide financial assistance as well. According to a report in a local newspaper, Pakistan is likely to receive financial assistance from China and UAE this month. A senior official, privy to the development, told the local newspaper that during the month of January 2019, the country is most likely to attain a $6 billion facility. He further added that “UAE will also deposit $3 billion in Pakistan’s exchange reserves, but in installments, and will also extend an oil facility of $3 billion for deferred payment too.” China will deposit $2 billion and will most likely do it in one go. However, he said, China wants Pakistan not to highlight its assistance for strengthening the reserves. -PM for efforts to meet target of 15m cotton bales production Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday called for consorted efforts to enhance the production of cotton to 15 million bales, reiterating his government’s priorities to support farmers in adopting the modern practices. Chairing a meeting on the challenges being faced by the country in cotton sector and the way forward towards uplifting the agriculture sector, the prime minister approved setting up of a working group, headed by the National Food Security minister, to revamp the existing seed registration institutes to bring about qualitative improvement in their output. The meeting was attended by National Food Security Minister Sahibzada Mehboob Sultan, Advisor to PM on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam, Punjab Agriculture Minister Malik Nauman Ahmed Langrial, and National Food Security Secretary Dr Hashim Popalzi. It was decided that a working group comprising private sector seed companies and government sector regulators would also be constituted to simplify seed certification system and to find a solution to ensure that the farmers were able to differentiate between the good and the bad varieties and companies. -Karachi Police launches a new initiative for crime control in the city Karachi Police has launched a new initiative for crime control in the mega city. Karachi police has prepared an application for keeping a record of crime and facilitating the citizens. People will be able to report the theft of mobile, car and cash. The complaint will be received to relevant SSP immediately after being registered. On district level, victim support service desk will monitor the complaints. It will arrange a contact between police and the affected citizen as soon as the complaint gets registered. The app will be launched for the Karachiites after completion of testing. -30,000 desi chickens to be given at subsidised rates in Multan In a bid to promote poultry farming, at least 30,000 desi birds, being reared at local government poultry farms and units, will be given to the masses at subsidised prices from February 2019. This was said by Poultry Development Officer Dr Salma Naz in Multan on Monday. She said the livestock department has started seeking applications from citizens in this regard. She said the provision of poultry units would enable the masses to have an additional income. She remarked that citizens’ interest and queries related to desi poultry birds was on the rise for the past few days as she received a number of phone calls. -Basmati rice exports exhibit 24.32pc growth in five months Exports of Basmati Rice has registered 24.32 percent growth during first five months (July – November) of current fiscal year due to lower commodity price in international market, according to data released by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Monday. Pakistan exported basmati rice worth $207.64 million during first five months of current fiscal year as compared with $167.014 million in the corresponding period of the last fiscal year. The quantity of exported rice has been increased by 39.68 percent for fetching this foreign exchange in the period under review. Overall the exports of rice fell by 5.62 percent to $614.193 million during July – November 2018 as compared with $650.772 million in the same period of the last fiscal year. -Textile exports fetch $5.506 billion during first five months The rupee depreciation helped the textile exports in terms of local currency to grow by 21 percent during first five months (July – November) of current fiscal year. -PM Imran vows to rectify past mistakes for prosperous Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday vowed to rectify mistakes made in the past to ensure prosperity in Pakistan. “We want to correct all that has been done in the past,” the premier said while addressing the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) in Islamabad. “In the past, the governments did not contemplate raising businesses and exports,” PM Imran said. “We received a huge trade deficit from the previous government, which we are struggling to reduce.” He stressed, “we need to change our mindsets; a change in the thought process is imperative for a better future.” Success, he maintained, can only be achieved by learning from one’s mistakes. -Sindh govt issues Rs220m for modern forensic lab at Karachi varsity The Sindh government has issued Rs220 million to establish a modern DNA and Serology forensic laboratory at the University of Karachi. The amount was issued to Dr Panjwani Center for Molecular Medicine and Drug Research, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS) to set up the state of the art lab at the Jamil-ur-Rahman Center for Genome Research of PCMD. The ICCBS has prepared a comprehensive execution plan for the project, Prof Dr Muhammad Iqbal Chaudhary, the ICCBS director said on Monday while speaking at a press conference held at the LEJ National Science Information Centre. -Number of taxpayers have risen by 30% in last one year: Hammad Azhar The number of taxpayers in Pakistan have risen by 30% in last one year, said Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar on Monday. While addressing a press conference in Lahore, Mr Azhar stated the government was committed to bringing tax reforms and widening the tax net for putting Pakistan on the path of progress and prosperity. He added that four-million taxpayers had so far filed their tax returns and they could file their tax returns on Monday (today). Moreover, the minister said it had been decided to translate the Federal Board of Revenue policies and tax laws into Urdu for making the tax system easier to comprehend for the common man. -105 million cfpd gas, 5,358 barrels oil per day Reserves discovered in Pakistan Five successful drills were also made by United Energy Pakistan Limited in Tando Allah Yar, Tando Muhammad Khan and other districts of Sindh. -Half of Pakistan population to have health cards for free medical treatment Health Minister Aamir Kiani says half of the population of the country will have health cards for free medical treatment by next year. Talking to newsmen after inauguration of a shelter home for homeless people in Rawalpindi, the Minister said people having health cards will be able to get medical treatment free of cost at private hospitals up to seven hundred twenty thousand rupees. Aamir Kiani said best facilities will be provided to the needy at shelter homes, and the provincial governments concerned will bear the expenditures for it. -PM Imran Khan targets two main industries for economic revival Prime Minister Imran Khan says government is working to facilitate small and medium industry and exporters of the country. The Prime Minister said the nation needs to change its mindset regarding the business or setting up industry in Pakistan. He said the attitude of bureaucracy towards the business sectors will also be changed and it would need to remove bottlenecks in the way of doing business. The Prime Minister said increased prosperity will come into the country through commerce and industry.
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Real Estate Investment Comparisons For Lahore Islamabad And Faisalabad Architect Shah Nawaz
En este tutorial ilustrado te explicamos en tres minutos como funciona el Big Data. ¿Sabes que es el Big Data? ¿Por qué los datos son el nuevo petroleo y como su análisis y procesamiento pueden transformarse en soluciones para la ciudadanía ... Biggest Kite Quetta Basant Mela 2018, 25 Tawa Quetta phir Quetta hai... Dunger Group, - Duration: 9:54. Quetta Kite Club & 147 Kite Club Islamabad 454,235 views This What is Data Science Video will give you an idea of a life of Data Scientist. This Data Science for Beginners video will also explain the steps involved... Faisalabad offers the most economical investment opportunities right now compared to lahore and islamabad. www.gchf.pk In this video, Architect Shah Nawaz discusses 4 points: 1. Real Estate price ... Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. Live Basant 2020 Mela in Faisalabad Basant 2020. HD BASANT FESTIVAL 2020 --- Big Basant Mala in Faisalabad 7 Feb 2020 ---- kite flying festival - Duration: 28:17. Lahori Patang Baaz 3,207 views Get a Car in easy installment on monthly basis any where from Pakistan by Data Brothers (Pvt) Ltd. You can get any car you want call now on screen contract n... Jani Aur Data Darbar Ke Mirasiyon Ka Jawab Nahi, Jugat Hungama!! Dubbing Master Sajjad Seeti 24 6 Aug 2019 24 News HD is one of the leading news channe... Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube.