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One rupee gained versus dollar as govt declares ‘revolutionary action plan’ Banks under fire for maintaining reserves g Forward booking to be banned, regulated g Regulators to keep eye on inter-bank market g Customs, ASF to check daily smuggling of $10-12m g Forex firms to get bank-like rebate to up remittances by $20bn g FIA to clamp down on over 30,000 unregistered currency dealers g
AKISTANI rupee started recovering Tuesday and surged by Re 1 against the dollar on the local currency market as the federal government Monday took notice of the record appreciation in the value of the US currency trading above Rs 99 on the open market a day earlier. Realization of the foreign pledges is another source the government is pinning hope in as Islamabad expects the transfer of over $ 600 million US war reimbursements in various installments by next month. Also, a breakthrough is expected in the realization of $ 800 million under privatization proceeds of the PTCL as a team of the utility’s buyers from Etisalat is due today (Wednesday) to discuss the long-standing issue with local authorities. Tuesday saw the rupee gaining Re 1 and 25 paisas, respectively, on the open and inter-bank market where the dollar traded at Rs 98.50 and Rs 97.90 against Monday’s Rs 99.50 and Rs 98.15. Though government officials denied it, the market sources claimed that the central bank must have injected some liquidity to brake the historic upsurge of the greenback against the local currency. “Today the dollar depreciated by Re 1 and we by next week would see further downfall,” State Minister for Finance and Investment Saleem H. Mandviwala told reporters here at the office
of Board of Investment. Pointing finger at the “speculators”, the minister claimed to have devised an “action plan” based on a series of short-term remedial measures to bring the dollar down to below Rs 90 level “as soon as possible”. “I feel the dollar is over-valued in Pakistan,” said the minister. According to Mandviwala, the governmental steps include: Banning the dollar’s forward booking by importers through banks, curbing the smuggling of foreign currencies to foreign countries, like Dubai, mobilizing the Federal Intelligence Agency (FIA) against more than 30,000 unregistered foreign exchange companies operating in Pakistan, giving banks-like incentives to the money exchangers under the Pakistan Remittance Initiative (PRI) scheme, disallowing banks to maintain huge dollar reserves and constant monitoring of the inter-bank market. “We would regularly be monitoring the implementation of theses measures,” said the minister who intends to set an ambitious target of $ 20 billion for worker remittances from fiscal year 2014. Giving an account of Monday’s meeting at the State Bank, Mandviwala said in the
meeting none could find a reason for the dollar’s current surge, but all concluded was that the “media hype” did this. “Speculations on forex reserves and the government’s inability to meet its foreign financial obligations brought us this situation,” he said. Reacting to speculations, the minister said, the country would be left with reserves of 4-5 months in hand even if all its financial obligations were cleared. In Monday’s meeting, the minister said, when things were detailed some “quite disturbing” figures fronted the participants. “A lot” of foreign exchange, around $10-12 million, is illegally being exported abroad every day, he said adding that around 80 percent of the smuggled money was going to Dubai. “This has to be stopped. No currency should go abroad without the State Bank’s permission,” he said. If Pakistan Customs and the Airport Security Force failed to control the smuggling the government, he said, would engage a “third agency” for the task. “The central bank of Dubai would also be contacted to check the irregularities,” Mandviwala told journalists. The government also intends to clamp down on the commercial banks which, the
minister hinted, were holding billions of dollars in reserves which are to be used as export proceeds. “People retaining the dollar reserves or proceeds are creating liquidity crunch on the foreign exchange market,” he noted with concern. “They would have to surrender these dollars to the State Bank. The inter-bank (market) would be watched,” he said. Also, Mandviwala said, under consideration were the proposals to ban of forward booking of the dollar by the importers through banks. “Forward booking would be banned if it came out as a reason for dollar appreciation,” he replied a questioner adding that “no one would be allowed to take undue profit About unregistered currency dealers, the finance minister said over 30,000 illegal firms were “posing a failure” to the regulated exchange firms. He said the FIA would be moved in a crackdown against such unlawful dealers who were damaging the national economy. “The Competition Commission of Pakistan may also be involved,” the minister said. The minister also announced that from next week the money exchangers would start getting the bankslike incentives under the PRI scheme under which the banks are paid a 6-rupee rebate on the transactions of worker remittances through formal channel. “I would increase the present $ 13.5 billion remittance target to $ 20 billion from next year (FY14),” the minister declared adding “if we affectively implement these measures there is no reason the dollar would slid back to normal.”
Ship carrying 55000MT pSM coal arriveS g
Contracts for iron ore import finalised KARACHI STAFF REPORT
A spokesman of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) Tuesday said a ship carrying 55,000 metric tons of coal arrived at the Port Qasim Pakistan Steel Jettyfrom Australia. The unloading of coal has been started through the 4.2 Km conveyer belt from Port Qasim Jetty to Pakistan Steel raw material stockyard. He said that Government is taking keen interest for the revival of PS and the procurement of raw materials from the bailout package is successfully started by PSmanagement. He added that the shortage of raw materials is the major cause of all problems currently facing by PS and management is fully exercising to solve
this problem, as once the supply chain of raw materials is started then all problems will be solved. This coal was purchased from an Australian company through a long term contract with Pakistan Steel. Regarding iron ore availability PS spokesman said that, PS management achieved great success in iron making process during the shortage of imported iron ore with the utilization of local iron ore. The PSM spokesman said about 0.1 Million Tonns of local iron ore fromBaluchistan had been utilized by the PSM in this financial year. On the other hand, two contracts of imported iron ore are finalized and about 30000 metric Tonns of iron ore will reach PS in next 20 days. He added that many tenders for procurement
of iron ore are under process, after completion of all legal paper work process two
contracts of more than 100000 Metric tons of imported iron ore will be finalized.
Intel Pakistan Year in Review KARACHI STAFF REPORT
2012 was an exciting year for Intel in the Asia Pacific region. Technology innovation from the region made possible devices with an immersive and personal computing experience. Intel is proud to be a driving force behind this innovation. Creating and extending computing technology to connect and enrich lives has been Intel’s company vision. This year Intel made a leap forward by delivering next generation processors that changed the way people use and interact with computing technology from interactive signs, smart cars to smartphones, tablets, Ultrabooks™ and servers. Intel also continued its work to help transform Asia into a global powerhouse through a focus on education, encouraging the adoption of 21 st century skills and investing in Asian startups and entrepreneurs across the region. In 2012 Intel made smarter, faster and more secure computing possible through the integration of revolutionary technology. The first processors built on Intel’s innovative 22nm 3-D tri-gate transistors came to market with the launch of the 3 rd Gen Intel ® Core™ processor family. As a result Ultrabooks and other PC systems are now equipped with new technology that enables faster file transfers, super-quick start times, quick connections and greater security. Continuing Intel’s commitment to consumers to make computing easier, faster and more engaging will continue with the company’s planned 4 th Gen Intel ® Core™ processor family that is expected to reach consumers in 2013. “Technology companies and manufacturers will need to tap into the psyche of Asian consumers and respond with relevant and desirable products, now more than ever. Consumers will be inundated with mobile device options. A range of screen sizes, processing power and weights will enter the market in 2013 and manufacturers will rely on consumers’ choices to identify the most popular devices for future production,” Naveed Siraj, Country Manager, Intel Pakistan. In 2012, thirty-six teams from Asia were selected as finalists for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair . This year the competition attracted more than 1,500 talented high school students from around the world to compete for over US$3 million in prizes and grants. The Intel ® Teach Program has also helped millions of teachers harness technology to improve learning in the classroom. Worldwide, Intel trained more than 10 million teachers and we have trained more than 2.6 million teachers across 13 APAC countries. In Pakistan, Intel has trained more than 325,000 teachers.
7-8% ECONOMIC GROWTH ACHIEVABLE IN PAKISTAN: BURKI KARACHI STAFF REPORT
There are a number of positive features in Pakistani economy, which if incorporated in the growth equation, can pull the country back from economic stagnation and set it on a plane of high and sustainable rate of GDP growth. Pakistan, if managed properly, can achieve a growth rate of 7 to 8 percent in the next three to five years. Shahid Javed Burki, Renowned Economist, former VP World Bank and former Caretaker Finance Minister of Pakistan, expressed these views while presenting his Macroeconomic Address during the 13th MAP Convention organized here today by the Management Association of Pakistan. Under the theme of this year’s MAP Convention “Leadership, People, Innovation”, speakers from across the world
gathered to discuss growing market needs and measures to overcome challenges through strong leadership, human capital management and innovation. Terrabiz is the official conference producer of the convention. Shahid Javed Burki highlighted factors that should become part of
the growth framework being developed by the Planning Commission that include: agriculture with a high growth potential; medium size companies with the skill base to become international supply chains; opening up of the economy to India; an enviable geographic space; rap-
idly growing cities that could become the engines of economic growth; the entry of a million well trained and skilled women into the economy every year; and large diasporas to play important roles in the development of the homeland. He pointed out that 2012-13 is likely
to be better than the year before but it does not mean that the economy is finally out of woods. He said: “In 2008-12, Pakistan was engaged in making a transition from a controlled to a reasonably open political system. The positive side of this development is that a durable and representative political system is coming into being in which people will have a voice. One of the more important reasons for the economy’s indifferent performance was the poor quality of governance that was on offer. There are ways of improving governance and some of these are being factored into the development of institutions of accountability.” Earlier, Kamal Chinoy, President MAP while delivering the welcome note said, “The aim of this convention is to provide a platform and opportunity for corporate stakeholders to analyze key trends and prospects in the region in general and Pakistan in particular.
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About 13.3 million cotton bales production estimated ISLAMABAD AGENCIES
ESPITE the damages caused by the floods in the cotton growing areas, the production of the crop during the current season has been estimated at 13.3 million bales. “The Cotton Assessment Committee has estimated cotton production at 13.3 million bales against the set targets of 14.6 million bales,” Cotton Development Commissioner in the Ministry of Textile Industry, Dr. Khalid Abdullah told APP. He was of the view that it was very encouraging that despite the torrential rains and flash floods in two major cotton producers provinces Punjab and Sindh, better crop output has been projected. He said that according to the second estimate of the committee, 9.6 million cotton bales were produced in Punjab whereas 3.6 million bales in Sindh while 0.1 million bales production has
been estimated in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa and Balochistan provinces. Dr. Abdullah said that the committee in its first meeting had estimated about 9 million cotton
Japanese auto investors shifting focus to Pakistan: Hiroshi Oe ISLAMABAD: Huge potential exists between Pakistan and Japan to further strengthen economic ties as Pakistan offers a big market for investment in different sectors and hoped that the Japanese companies would tap that potential. These remarks were made by Hiroshi Oe, Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan while addressing business community at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI). He said that major reasons that keep Japanese companies away from investing in Pakistan are security and energy supply. The Ambassador said that he has been trying to provide Japanese companies with opportunities to clear their perception gap and turn their eyes to the opportunities that Pakistan possesses. He said that Key areas of trade and investment between Pakistan and Japan could be textile, surgical equipments, furniture and automobile industry. He said that many big Japanese auto-industries investors are seriously planning to shift their units to Pakistan from Thailand due to heavy floods. In his welcome address, Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI said that Japan is third biggest and one of the trillion dollar economies of the world and is an important trading partner of Pakistan as well as a major donor. He said that ICCI would also plan to take a business delegation to Japan as frequent exchange of sector-specific delegations would bring closer the business communities of both the countries. Mr.Bakhtawari said that today Pakistan’s major issue is energy deficit as our economy is facing huge setbacks because of energy crisis. He said that our country needs Japanese technical assistance and investment in renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, thermal, and biogas. He said that Pakistan is a resource rich country, but lacks technology and expertise; whereas Japan is a resource scarce country, but it is technologically advanced, thus, Pakistan and Japan could benefit a lot with mutual cooperation in areas like energy, mining, agriculture, trade and investment. ONLINE
bales production in Punjab and about 3.56 million bales in the Sindh province which were revised upwards during the second estimates of the crop. The third meeting of the Cot-
ton Assessment Committee would be held by the end of current month to measure the crop out put across the country during current season and for preparing the strategies for next sowing, he added. Cotton Development Commissioner said that the government had set the cotton production at 14.6 million bales during the current financial year by cultivating the crop over 2.5 million hectare land to produce 10.5 million cotton bales in Punjab and 0.65 million hectare land to produce 4.0 million bales in the Sindh provinces. Out of the total set targets, cotton crop was cultivated over 530,000 hectare in Sindh where as the Punjab achieved 2.29 million hectares crop sowing during the period under review, he added. However, he informed that due to flash floods in the country about 2.4 percent area under cotton crop was damaged in Punjab and Sindh losses 11 percent area out of the total cultivated land.
Maqbool takes helm of McB Bank
KARACHI STAFF REPORT
Imran Maqbool, a former Bank of America’s official, took the held of the MCB Bank as the banks’ president and Chief Executive Officer, it emerged Tuesday. After securing approval of the State Bank of Pakistan, Maqbool would be taking his new charge from the 22nd of this
month, said a bank official. “This is to inform you that State Bank of Pakistan has granted, in-principle, approval for the appointment of Mr. Imran Maqbool as President/CEO of MCB Bank Limited,” Abdus S. Sami, MCB’s company secretary, told the bank’s shareholders at the country’s three stock exchanges. Subject to compliance with applicable laws, rules and regulations, the appointment of Maqbool was also notified to the London Stock Exchange. Maqbool holds a MBA degree from IBA Karachi and MS in Management from Sloan School of Management, MIT (USA). He started his career from Bank of America, where he worked at various positions in Relationship Management, Corporate and Investment Banking, over a period of 15 years. He moved on to Citibank to work as Regional Head Corporate Banking in Pakistan. He has been a part of MCB for the last eight years. During this period, he worked as Corporate Head North before moving to Colombo where he was responsible for managing MCB’s Sri Lanka Operations. In Pakistan, he managed the Islamic Banking and Special Assets Management Group. Before becoming president, he was serving as Group Head Commercial Banking, MCB Bank.
Bank supervisor will restore trust in eurozone: Draghi BRUSSELS AGENCIES
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said Monday that the creation of an EUwide banking supervisory authority would help restore confidence in crisis-wracked eurozone. The so-called Single Supervisory Mechanism or SSM “will contribute to restoring confidence in the banking sector across the euro area,” Draghi told the European Parliament’s committee for economic and monetary affairs in a regular hearing. Draghi said the agreement last week by EU leaders at their final summit this year to set up such a body meant that Europe, which has been battling a sovereign debt crisis for more than two years, can “end the year on a positive note.” “This is a clear demonstration that European institutions are determined to act in a timely and decisive way to complete” economic and monetary union, he said.
“The establishment of the SSM can be expected to be a key turning point in the resolution of our current challenges,” Draghi said.
Under a complex deal hammered out following marathon talks, EU finance ministers agreed on the creation of a common supervisory authority in a key step towards a banking union which EU leaders hope will ring-fence banks in trouble to prevent future crises. It will allow eurozone banks to be recapitalised directly, rather than through governments, so as to avoid adding to their growing debt burden. The ECB will be entrusted with managing the supervisory system in tandem with the London-based European Banking Authority, which covers all 27 EU states, and national supervisors. From March 2014, banks with assets worth more than 30 billion euros ($39 billion) or equal to 20 percent of a state’s economic output will come under the ECB’s remit. The ECB will also have the right to intervene in cases involving smaller banks but it is expected that national supervisors will have the main responsibility in this category.
Business 02 Major Gainers COMPANY Wyeth Pak Limited Khyber TobaccoXD MCB Bank Ltd. Millat Tractors Ltd. AL-Ghazi Tractors
OPEN 900.00 97.82 210.69 560.00 246.75
HIGH 945.00 102.71 215.20 564.00 254.00
LOW 940.00 102.71 210.50 558.75 250.00
CLOSE 944.76 102.71 214.60 563.49 250.00
CHANGE 44.76 4.89 3.91 3.49 3.25
TURNOVER 1,250 500 482,000 13,400 3,600
1559.99 1400.00 10100.00 338.10 277.00
1415.50 1355.65 10020.00 337.25 261.76
1415.50 1400.00 10075.56 337.25 261.76
-74.50 -27.00 -24.44 -17.75 -13.77
600 5,000 520 22,200 12,200
45.05 17.00 11.44 55.10 15.10
43.90 16.02 11.01 54.40 14.61
43.98 16.22 11.16 54.93 14.73
-0.52 -0.48 0.15 0.57 -0.10
10,348,000 9,528,500 8,396,000 5,952,000 5,697,500
Major Losers Bata (Pak) Colgate Palmolive UniLever Pak Mithchells Fruit Pak.Int.Cont. SD
1490.00 1427.00 10100.00 355.00 275.53
Volume Leaders Hub Power Co Jah.Sidd. Co. Byco Petroleum D.G.K.Cement Maple Leaf Cement
44.50 16.70 11.01 54.36 14.83
Interbank Rates US Dollar UK Pound Japanese Yen Euro
97.9563 158.9047 1.1675 129.0182
Dollar East BUY US Dollar Euro Great Britain Pound Japanese Yen Canadian Dollar Hong Kong Dollar UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal Australian Dollar
98.30 128.88 158.47 1.1568 98.67 12.46 26.60 26.09 102.36
SELL 99.00 130.39 160.29 1.1701 100.31 12.67 26.88 26.32 104.99
CORPORATE CORNER JS Bank, InfoTel Pakistan sign agreement to launch EMV Capable Credit and Debit Cards
ISLAMABAD: JS Bank Limited, one of the fastest growing and most dynamic banks in Pakistan has recently inked a new strategic partnership with InfoTel Pakistan one of the leading cards services provider in the market and a partner of Thales e-Security Solutions. To launch this new partnership, an agreement was signed by Mr. Kalim-ur-Rahman, President and CEO of JS Bank, and Mr. Riaz Siddiqui, Managing Director, InfoTel at the Head Office of the Bank in Karachi. The signing ceremony was attended by members of the management teams of both organizations, regional representatives of Thales as well as His Excellency Mr. Christian Ramage, the Consul General of the French Republic in Karachi. Under the new agreement, JS Bank will enable its systems to offer its customer EMV compliant cards in both Debit and Credit categories thereby providing them with a cutting edge global standard of heightened security and increased functionality. Furthermore by complying to EMV, JS Bank will have a competitive advantage of issuing cards on the global platform of Java, thereby enabling them to be better equipped to offer more features and services in the days ahead.
Intel recognises Roots integration towards technology fusion in education ISLAMABAD: Intel Education initiative in Pakistan is focused towards incorporating research based learning at an early age so that children can develop 21st century skills and compete effectively in the knowledge based economy of the future. With respect to this goal, Intel Education Awards are held annually to celebrate and promote technology integration by teachers and schools. The Annual all Pakistan Intel Education Awards ceremony was held at Auditorium, Islamabad Club on 12th December, 2012. Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq CEO Roots Millennium Schools (RMS) and Manager ICT Initiative & Digital Literacy - Mrs. Tayyaba Noureen has been awarded with Special Recognition/ Appreciation Award in recognition of their efforts and support for the effective and sustainable integration of technology within Roots Millennium Schools by introducing and implementing Roots Intel Curriculum in collaboration with Intel Corporation. On behalf of CEO RMS – Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq, GM RMS Mrs. Aliya Asim received the award. And ICT Teacher Roots Millennium Schools – Ms. Noor-e-Sahar was awarded as a WINNER for the category thinking with Technology amongst all private and government institutions from all over Pakistan for the year 2012. The award aims to showcase effective and innovative integration of computer technology into the existing curriculum while promoting higher thinking and collaborative learning among students.
Wednesday, 19 December, 2012