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Thursday, 29 November, 2012
OGRA should fix CNG price to provide relief to masses: PEW ISLAMABAD ONLINE
HE Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) has urged the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) to take independent decisions to determine a new price of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) in order to provide relief to the masses. He said that OGRA must set aside the pressure of influential CNG association cartel and should take independent decision to fix new CNG price. In a statement issued here on Wednesday, President Pakistan Economy Watch Dr.Murtaza Mughal said CNG cartel had minted billion of rupees from the consumers and therefore now it was reluctant to sell gas at lower rates. “State owned gas companies should take over the CNG stations if CNG owners are not ready to sell gas at low rates to provide relief to the consumers,” he said adding that Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) should also take action of CNG cartel that had deprived the consumers of CNG by secret call of strike to CNG station owners to shut down outlets. He said CNG station owners have been seen to repeatedly ignore the apex court directions to sell gas at low rates which has deprived the customers of any relief. He, however, said that OGRA should take into account all valid suggestions of the stakeholders to settle on a new price formula of CNG as per the directions of apex court. “The decision of OGRA to solicit public opinion to determine the prices of CNG for which held public hearing in three major cities of the country including Lahore, Islamabad and Karachi is highly significant,”Dr. Murtaza added.
ADB eyes social protection for the poor ISLAMABAD ONLINE
Social protection systems in most Asian countries fall far short of meeting the needs of the poor and vulnerable even though better safety nets can be affordable for poorer countries. A new study from Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said despite high economic growth in much of the region, public spending on social protection in Asia and the Pacific is lower than in any part of the world except for sub-Saharan Africa. Recent economic and financial
crises, food and fuel emergencies, and the rapidly increasing frequency of natural disasters have starkly exposed the inadequacy of the region’s national social protection systems to guarantee a minimum level of subsistence and meet people’s basic needs. “Governments around the world tend to scramble to adopt social protection programs in times of crisis,” says the Director General of Independent Evaluation Vinod Thomas. “But comprehensive systems built in stable years are much more effective in coping with the human impact of future economic or political crises or nat-
EU reaches compromise on ratings agency rules BRUSSELS AGENCIES
The European Commission, European Parliament and European Council have reached compromise on new rules meant to govern credit ratings agencies, EU Internal Market Commissioner Michel Barnier said on Tuesday. “I welcome the important agreement reached today on additional rules for credit rating agencies which aim to reduce the over-reliance on ratings, eradicate conflicts of interest, and establish a civil liability regime,” Barnier said in statement. These agencies “will have to be more transparent when rating sovereign states,” Barnier added, as well as “respect timing rules on sovereign ratings and justify the timing of publication of unsolicited ratings of sovereign debt” in order to avoid destabilising financial markets.
SAARC’s power lag = 50,000MW ISLAMABAD: The leaders of business community and have reiterated the need tap energy potential in South Asia which is must for maintainable growth and economic revival. These observations surfaced in a seminar titled, “Energy Cooperation in South Asia Commitment and New Dimensions” organized by SAARC CCI in New Delhi in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. After inaugurating the seminar, Gireesh B. Pradhan, Secretary Ministry of New and Alternative Energy, India emphasized for energy cooperation and stressed a shift towards alternative energy. Vikramjit Singh Sahney, President Saarc CCI said that un-interrupted supply of energy at affordable price was needed to sustain this economic growth. The region is faced with 50 thousand MW of electricity which needs collective efforts to transform South Asia from an energy-starved to an energy efficient region. Speaking on the occasion, Tariq Sayeed, former president of SAARC CCI said that South Asia has 150,000 MW of hydropower potential and .5 million MW solar and wind power potential but the region was faced with 50,000 MW shortfall. Since the energy demand in the region would be doubled by 2020, there was dire need to invest in energy related projects, said Sayeed. P.S. Bami, President India Energy noted that 300 million people only in India had no access to electricity despite the fact that India had more potential of energy production against energy demand. ONLINE
ural disasters.” Widening wealth gaps are also drawing attention to the need for greater social protection in Asia, where income disparities over the past two decades have widened in 11 countries that account for more than four-fifths of the region’s population. All countries spend on the poor in some form or another, although there are considerable country variations in the levels and effectiveness of the spending. Concerns over the cost of universal social protection are deterring some countries, but well-targeted safety nets are not prohibitively expensive, says the study.
In the Philippines, for example, the government’s conditional cash transfer program to uproot extreme poverty costs less than 0.5 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product, yet reaches 15 million people. The program makes regular cash payments to mothers conditional on their children attending school and public health clinics. After just three years of implementation, evaluation findings show positive results on elementary education school enrollment and beneficiary households spending more on the health and education of their children.
ICCI clamours for traders’ residential concerns ISLAMABAD AGENCIES
Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI said that the traders of the Federal Capital were facing severe housing problems and demanded that small plots or flats should be allocated to these traders as they played vital role for the development of Islamabad. Mian Muhammad Aslam, Former MNA and Vice President of Jamat-e-Islamai Punjab visited Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) for addressing business community of Federal Capital. Zubair Farooq Khan, Deputy Chief of Jama’at-i-Islami, Islamabad was also present on the occasion. Speaking on the occasion, Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI lauded the dynamic role of Mian Muhammad Aslam for social welfare of the common people. He also informed the Former MNA about various problems faced by business community. ICCI President highlighted the problem of balanced rent control because non-existence of a balanced rent law in the federal capital was the main cause of rising rent disputes between tenants and landlords. Bakhtawari demanded that the representation of traders in the CDA board of directors is essential that help in creating a bridge between the citizens and the local administration to understand the rapidly increasing problems of the city and giving their input in the policy making and decision-making process of mega projects. He said that the traders of the Federal Capital were facing severe housing problems and demanded that small plots or flats should be allocated to these traders as they played vital role for the development of Islamabad. He also
proposed that the CDA should also consider a separate housing society for the traders. Mian Muhammad Aslam, Former MNA and Vice President of Jamat-e-Islamai Punjab said that he would provide his full support in execution of balanced rent control act. He asked President of ICCI to make a proposal regarding all concerned issues and assured his support for solving these problems of business community on priority basis. Munawar Mughal, former President ICCI thanked Mian Muhammad Aslam and Zubair Farooq Khan for visiting ICCI and was of the view that political leaders were not fulfilling their colossal promises after winning elections. He stressed all political parties to demonstrate their responsibility and uphold the decent democratic values and norms in their ranks for prosperity of our country.
Asian shares slip on US fiscal cliff fears HONG KONG AGENCIES
Asian markets fell Wednesday, following losses on Wall Street, as traders fret US lawmakers will not agree a deal to avert the fiscal cliff. Forex dealers also ran for cover after the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said “little progress” had been made in cross-party talks on the looming tax hikes and spending cuts due to come in on January 1 that would tip the US into recession. Tokyo fell 0.84 percent by the break, Hong Kong lost 0.64 percent, Sydney shed 0.46 percent, Shanghai was 0.45 percent lower and Seoul slipped 0.90 percent. Reid’s comments raised the spectre of another long battle between Republicans and Democrats, similar to last year’s row over raising the country’s borrowing cap, which led to the United States losing its AAA credit rating. “The difficulties with solving the US ‘fiscal cliff’ are coming to a head again
and may present a good selling opportunity for investors,” said Kenichi Hirano, market analyst at Tachibana Securities. The news hit Wall Street shares. The Dow ended 0.69 percent lower, the S&P 500 lost 0.52 percent and the Nasdaq slid 0.30 percent. The losses came despite data showing US consumer confidence rose in November to its highest level since February 2008, while a separate report said home prices rose in September, a fresh sign of recovery in the crucial housing market. Also Tuesday the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) warned that failure to reach a deal would likely see the world’s number one economy fall back into recession, which would have a global knock-on effect. And Richard Fisher, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said a temporary fix with no clarity on tax and regulatory policy could have destructive effects. Currency traders have also been spooked, with euro and dollar falling
against the yen after enjoying a recent rally on hopes for a US deal, while the Greek bailout success had also been priced in. The euro bought $1.2929 and 105.90 yen in early Asian trade Wednesday,
compared with $1.2938 and 106.30 yen in New York late Tuesday. The dollar was at 81.90 yen against 82.16 yen. The yen has seen selling pressure in recent weeks after the man expected to become prime minister after
next month’s election vowed to press for more aggressive monetary easing to lift the economy. Focus has moved to Washington as Greece debt concerns abate after the country was eventually given long-frozen bailout cash on Tuesday. After marathon talks in Brussels, the eurozone and the International Monetary Fund agreed to unlock 43.7 billion euros ($56 billion) in loans and on the need to grant significant debt relief for decades to come. Greece must still meet a series of agreed conditions but “the decision will certainly reduce the uncertainty and strengthen confidence in Europe and in Greece,” said European Central Bank President Mario Draghi. On oil markets New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for January delivery, was down seven cents to $87.11 a barrel in the morning, and Brent North Sea crude for January climbed four cents to $109.91 in volatile trade. Gold was at $1,740.20 at 0230 GMT compared with $1,746.42 late Tuesday.
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Raja Riaz hails wheat support price FAISALABAD APP
Opposition leader Punjab Assembly Raja Riaz Ahmad has welcomed the decision of Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) to increase wheat support price. Talking to APP here on Wednesday, he said that it would not only help farmers to get reasonable price of their produce but also encourage them to increase the yeild. Raja Riaz said that Pakistan People’s Party represents the poor and steps have been taken by the federal government to make the farmers selfreliant. He said that PPP led government had increased wheat support price twice during the last four and a half years tenure which indicates pro-farmer policies of the government.
Oil prices mixed in Asian trade
Euro slips after buying on Greek rescue fizzles TOKYO
HE euro slipped in Asian trade on Wednesday after a buying spree sparked by Greece’s bailout deal fizzled owing to lingering concerns over Europe’s sovereign debt
problems. The single currency bought $1.2935 and 105.95 yen in Tokyo morning trade, compared with $1.2938 and 106.30 yen in New York late Tuesday. The dollar fetched 81.89 yen against 82.16 yen. “A weaker euro-dollar rate than prior to the news yesterday of a deal to keep Greece funded and its debt levels contained, partly reflects a classic ‘buy the rumour, sell the news’ re-
Oil prices were mixed in Asian trade Wednesday as investors focused on US budget talks and doubts emerged over a how a bailout deal for debt-strapped Greece would be implemented. New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for January delivery, was down seven cents to $87.11 a barrel in the morning, and Brent North Sea crude for January climbed four cents to $109.91 in volatile trade. Oil prices are “weighed down... by concerns about key US budget talks”, Phillip Futures said in a market commentary. “As markets cautiously greeted news of a deal to release emergency aid to debt-laden Greece, oil traders eyed the looming US ‘fiscal cliff’ as the latest sign struggling fuel demand could face further headwinds.” US lawmakers are working to hammer out an agreement on the budget for next year that requires painful compromises from both Republicans and Democrats, and negotiations have been marked by bitter political bickering. If no deal is reached before the end of the year, a poison pill of tax hikes and massive spending cuts, including slashes to the military, comes into effect and would likely send the world’s biggest economy back into recession. The initial euphoria over the debt deal reached between Greece and its creditors has also died down as both sides move to implement its terms.
sponse,” National Australia Bank said. The eurozone and International Monetary Fund agreed Tuesday to trim Greece’s heavy debt load and release the latest batch of rescue fund amounting to 43.7 billion euros in exchange for promised austerity reforms. “The whole Greek situation was obviously built into currency markets so it’s sold off since,” said Tim Kelleher, ASB’s head of FX institutional sales New Zealand. “I don’t think the euro is going anywhere fast,” he told Dow Jones Newswires. Worries about the US “fiscal cliff” of spending cuts and tax hikes, due to come into effect on January 1 unless a divided US congress strikes a new spending deal, may also weigh on the euro, dealers said. It “tends to be negative for equities” and that tends to lead to a sell-off of higheryielding “risky” units, which will drag the euro lower”, Kelleher said. The euro was also weighed on uncertainty over an independence drive by debt-hit Spain’s Catalonia region, dealers said. A raft of US economic data released Tuesday, however, gave a boost to sentiment about the health of the world’s biggest economy. US consumer confidence rose this month to its highest level since February 2008, while US home prices rose in September, a fresh sign of recovery for the country’s troubled housing market.
Business 02 Major Gainers OPEN COmPANy UniLever Pak 9700.00 Nestle Pakistan Ltd. 4699.00 Rafhan Maize Prod. 3700.00 Bata (Pak) XD 1565.55 Unilever Food 4150.00
HiGH 10185.00 4900.00 3799.00 1643.00 4357.00
LOW 10185.00 4900.00 3799.00 1620.00 4200.00
CLOSE 10185.00 4900.00 3799.00 1637.67 4200.00
CHANGE 485.00 201.00 99.00 72.12 50.00
TURNOVER 3,460 20 20 2,550 600
890.00 332.00 290.00 171.50 102.89
890.00 332.00 275.00 163.03 102.89
890.00 332.00 275.00 163.50 102.89
-36.00 -17.00 -7.00 -6.27 -5.41
50 100 1,400 8,200 1,500
7.07 7.17 5.90 5.54 99.91
6.89 6.40 5.28 5.30 95.65
6.94 6.62 5.48 5.38 97.53
0.04 0.06 0.30 0.07 2.26
40,180,000 35,091,000 19,497,000 15,252,500 14,507,000
Major Losers Wyeth Pak Limited Sanofi-Aventis Pak Bhanero Tex. Pak Gum & Chemical Gillette Pak
926.00 349.00 282.00 169.77 108.30
Volume Leaders Fauji Cement K.E.S.C. Dewan Cement Lafarge Pakistan Engro Corporation
6.90 6.56 5.18 5.31 95.27
Interbank Rates US Dollar UK Pound Japanese Yen Euro
96.4542 154.4232 1.1800 124.6478
Dollar East US Dollar Euro Great Britain Pound Japanese Yen Canadian Dollar Hong Kong Dollar UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal Australian Dollar
96.90 123.78 153.27 1.1662 96.20 12.24 26.15 25.65 99.82
97.40 125.11 154.89 1.1785 97.72 12.44 26.40 25.85 102.33
FrUIt, vegetAble export InCreASe by 4.21, 10.97% ISLAMABAD APP
Fruit and vegetable export from the country during the first four months of current financial year recorded increase of 4.21 percent and 10.97 percent respectively. During the period from July-October 2012 about 120,794 metric tons fresh fruits of different varieties worth US$ 81.48 million exported as compared to the 135,323 metric tons valuing US$ 78.18 million during the same period of last year. According the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), during first four
months of current financial year about 65,113 metric tons vegetables costing US$ 31.75 billion exported which was up by 10.97 percent as compared to 106,752 metric tons of US$ 28.6 million during same period of last year. The export of fruit and vegetables witnessed increase in their exports in dollars term, however, the export in quantity term witnessed reducing trend during last four months of current financial year, the data revealed. Meanwhile, the export of sugar during the period under review recorded 100 percent increase as about 126,819 metric tons of sugar worth US$ 70.29 million exported.
From the period from July-October 2012, the export of meat and meat preparations also increased by 30.64
percent as about 22,836 metric tons of meat and meat preparations valuing US$ 7.37 million exported as compared to 19,062 metric tons worth US$ 59.4 million exports of same period last year,, it added. The data revealed that during the first four months of current financial year the export of all other food items recorded 30.64 percent increase as against the last year’s export. During the period from July-October country earned US$ 343.26 million by exporting different food commodities where as it was recorded at 328.15 million during same period last year.
CORPORATE CORNER French ambassador signs partnership agreement with AKCSP
KARACHI: The French Ambassador to Pakistan, Mr. Philippe Thiébaud, signed, at his Residence, a partnership-agreement with the Chairman of Aga Khan Cultural Service Pakistan (AKCSP), Mr. Akbarali Pesnani on the 28th of November 2012 for a total budget of 175.000$. This event emphasizes the ambition of the French Government to reinforce its cooperation directly to the local communities in Pakistan. The objective of this collaboration with the AKCSP aims at encouraging skill development of the young population and artistic expressions to promote diversity and sustainable development, which is one of the major components of the French cultural cooperation in Pakistan. Two projects have been developed for the promotion of cultural diversity of the Northern part of Pakistan; in the regions of Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral which offer an exceptional range of natural and cultural resources.
Wateen recognised as Cisco TelePresence partner LAHORE: Wateen, Pakistan’s leading converged communications provider, announced today that it has achieved TelePresence Video Express Authorized Technology Provider (ATP) status from Cisco. This designation recognizes Wateen as having fulfilled the training requirements and program prerequisites to sell, deploy and support Cisco TelePresence Video products and solutions at the Express level. By this new addition, now Wateen’s customers can feel “Virtually” real presence of all required business executives in any meeting, business discussion or critical business planning exercise. The ATP program is an exclusive “invitation only” program from Cisco and Wateen had to meet a number of requirements and criteria among them the rigorous Cisco certified personnel levels required to qualify and earn the Cisco Telepresence Video Express ATP status.
‘America is responsible for suﬀering of Pakistanis’ KARACHI “America has a responsibility for some of the things that the average Pakistani has suffered.” This was stated by Todd Shea, Founder of Comprehensive Disaster Response Services (CDRS), in an interview appearing in the current issue of SouthAsia magazine. CDRS provides healthcare services and education to millions across Pakistan. The organization has also been involved in postearthquake relief work in the country since 2005. In the exclusive interview to SouthAsia magazine, Todd Shea said, “I tell people … to be careful of what you read in the papers and be careful about
letting that be your only perception. I had learned long ago to believe the media only so much because I had been duped into believing propaganda. In the last 7 years, in the American media, I’ve heard 2% of the truth about Pakistan, 100% of the time. And here, I’ve seen the other 98%.”
Launch of the British Council’s Education UK Virtual Exhibition 2012
LAHORE: The British Council inaugurated the third Virtual Exhibition 2012 under its Education UK (EUK) programme. Facilitating Pakistani students towards educational opportunities that may be available for them in the UK, the Virtual Exhibition through an interactive online platform has been reaching out to thousands of potential students for the last three years. The Exhibition was formally launched in a ceremony in Lahore today. On this occasion, Richard Weyers, Director Punjab, British Council said, “The British Council is delighted to be leading the way in providing virtual opportunities for students to connect with UK universities. We have a record breaking 32 UK universities involved in this year’s exhibition and
we hope this will benefit many thousands of potential students in Pakistan.”
Urbansole unveils new collection
LAHORE: Urbansole, a well known footwear brand in Pakistan, offers its customers both casual and formal footwear collection of shows, sandals, mocs and boots. Urbansole organised an exhibition at a local hotel, to launch its Spring/Summer Collection 2013. Kashir Zorain (Brand Manager, Urbansole), Jawad Musaddiq (Director, Urbansole) and Shahid Nawaz Cheema (BDM) along with national and international dealers and distributors attended the exhibition.
ISLAMABAD: Dr Asim Hussain Advisor to the Prime Minister on Petroleum and Natural Resources discussing the upcoming Pak-US Energy dialogue with US Ambassador to Pakistan H.E. Richard Olson, who called on the Advisor last week.
Thursday, 29 November, 2012