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Thursday, 09 February, 2012

IMF holds SBP responsible for high inflation KARACHI ISMAIL DILAWAR

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nTErnaTionaL monetary Fund (imF) holds State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) responsible for the persistence of a double-digit inflation in Pakistan saying the current massive liquidity injections by the central bank had inflationary impacts similar to that of the regulator’s direct financing of the budget deficit. “The switch to government borrowing from commercial banks has been supported by large liquidity injections by SBP, a policy that has similar inflationary effects as direct central bank financing,” observed imF in its latest country report for Pakistan. State Bank, which is currently pumping billions in the banking system with Tuesday seeing an injection of rs37 billion only contends that these injections were imperative to avoid a possible “bank failure” in the country. “From our perspective, if you don’t do it you have a possible bank failure,” said Governor SBP Yaseen anwar in a recent interview with Profit. The governor said, “We have to maintain stability in the financial markets of all our banking systems. Small banks having no deposit base would suffer and will have a collapse.” imF, however, dubs SBP lending to finance fiscal deficits as a key driving force behind the high inflation levels in the last few years and calls for scaling back of huge money injections in the banking sys-

tem and stoppage of the cash-strapped government’s budgetary borrowings. These steps, the international lending agency said, would reduce inflation and increase SBP’s policy credibility. “The authorities can help reduce the level and persistence of inflation by credibly adopting a less accommodative monetary policy stance,” it said. Before 2008, imF observed that 12month Consumer Price index (CPi) inflation had averaged about 5.5 per cent for more than a decade. in 2008, global commodity price shocked and a sharp depreciation of the rupee led to a spike in inflation, peaking at 25 per cent year-onyear in august 2008, which, although declining, remained much higher than in the pre-2008 period and higher than in neighboring countries. it said that through domestic price subsidies, the global food and fuel price shocks were reflected in larger fiscal deficits. With external financial inflows dwindling, these deficits were increasingly financed through SBP, which put upward pressure on prices through excessive growth in SBP net domestic assets and exchange rate depreciation. along with the inflation level, the persistence of inflation had increased since 2008, said the fund. “While moderate in absolute terms, persistence, which is essentially the correlation between current and

tinued accommodative monetary policy. Proposing remedies, the international funding institution said to slash the backbreaking price-hike the Government of Pakistan would have to undertake comprehensive fiscal reforms ensuring greater independence for the central bank. “Fiscal consolidation would free monetary policy to pursue inflation objectives,” it said adding that a more independent State Bank would be better able to resist pressures to finance the government deficit, either directly or indirectly. “and lower inflation would help the poor,” it said.

lagged inflation is higher than in the regional peers,” it said, adding the increase in persistence meant that it would now take longer for inflation in Pakistan to return to its equilibrium level after a common shock hits the economy. That, imF said, in turn implied that inflation and inflation expectations were likely to respond more sluggishly to policy changes. referring to survey data, imF said inflation expectations in Pakistan had continuously remained at around 15 per cent. “Persistence could be due to engrained inflationary expectations, institutional features, or CPi calculation problems,” it added. Further, imF warned there were risks to inflation, especially from possible supply shocks, pass– through from exchange rate depreciation, fiscal policy and con-

No tax avoidance, no money whitening under new CGT rules: Chairman SECP ISLAMABAD

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AMER SIAL

hairman Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) muhammad ali said on Wednesday that the Federal Board of revenue (FBr) has fully endorsed all proposals of the commission on the revamped Capital Gains Tax (CGT) regime for the stock market and there was no possibility for using it for tax evasion or money whitening. addressing a news conference, chairman SECP said the revision in CGT regime was accepted by FBr as it was finalised in consultation with all the stakeholders. he said the scheme will help in documentation of the money invested in stock markets, which would help in stopping tax evasion. it would also help in capital formation for the businesses. he said some of the procedural changes were being worked out along with up gradation of automation as new rules would be implemented from april 1, 2012. Chairman SECP also announced the commission plans to establish two more commodity exchanges in the country to promote transparency and fair practices in the commodity trade. he said commodity exchanges were needed to develop the future markets in country and it would be beneficial for the growers and the consumers. he said SECP was studying regulations if regulated spot markets to trade in agriculture products could be established. he explained that currently, the commodity spot markets and wholesale markets were established by the provinces, and

these markets lack regulatory framework to protect the rights of growers. he said commodity exchanges were at an evolution stage and it would take time to make them well regulated. however, he said there was no plan to increase the number of stock markets. CGT: he said since 1974 till June 30, 2010, CGT was exempted, even though the requirements for filing tax returns were in place. however, these were neither followed by the participants of the capital markets nor implemented by FBr. This resulted in a peculiar anomaly in the shape of the investors making legitimate, but undocumented gains accrued through transactions in the capital markets during this period. he said the new CGT regime would help document it for the first time. Chairman SECP said measures have been taken to address issues and there would be complete due diligence of the investors as already SECP has tightened procedures. ruling out any chance of misuse of the scheme for whitening of illegal money, he said a minimum holding period was under consideration. all transactions recorded by the national clearing agency would help stop tax evasion and tax avoidance. CGT would be applicable only on profit made against the earlier practice of deduction in both cases of profit or loss. CGT rate has been frozen at 10 per cent on holding period of up to 6 months and 8 per cent on period less than 1 year till 2014. it will help bring investors back to the market. he said before imposition of CGT, tax collection from stock market was rs5 billion per annum which drastically declined to rs400

million in the last fiscal year. he said any income earned through criminal activities was punishable under law including anti money Laundry (amL) act. SECP proposal was made in view of the Know-Your-Customer (KYC)/Customer-Due-Diligence (CDD) requirements being expanded for stock exchange brokers. These requirements aim to deter money launderers and terrorist financiers from using the non-bank financial system for illicit purposes. Under these requirements, the brokers are to adopt reasonable measures to establish the source of wealth and funds for high risk customers. Furthermore, the scope of the scheme shall not give any exemption from the application of FaTF recommendations. Source of income exemption will only be available for funds which remain invested for a certain period. This will only bring money from investors who are familiar with the capital markets and willing to take the price risk as share prices can go down substantially. in addition to the holding period, weighted average of funds would be used. in this regard, discussions will be held with FBr to finalise the modalities. SECP had also proposed that CGT rate be frozen at the current rate applicable for ease of calculation and to bring back the investor confidence in the market. To simplify and ensure timely deposit of tax revenue, a centralised collection mechanism at nCCPL was recommended. PMEX: Chairman SECP said globally commodities markets are one of the fastest growing segments of the overall capital market and the value traded on commod-

ity exchanges is multiple of value traded on stock exchanges. The significance of the commodity exchange becomes even more vital in a primarily agricultural country like Pakistan. Enhanced activity in this market can benefit the whole agriculture value chain from farmers to policy makers. a comparison with international markets depicts that the Pakistani commodity market has still to go a long way in evolving and contributing towards the overall economic objectives. The traded value of the exchange-traded futures contracts was a mere $8.8 billion in Pakistan as compared to $2.9 trillion in india, $239 billion in Turkey and $5.3 trillion in China for the year end 2011. This clearly shows the limited penetration and outreach of the commodities market in Pakistan despite the immense potential. DEbT MarkETs: about debt markets, he said SBP and SECP must join efforts to create a vibrant debt market in Pakistan. SECP had proposed that a joint committee be formed consisting of officials from SBP and SECP to work in close coordination with the objectives to carry out a holistic review of the debt market, identify problems and initiatives required at strategic and operational levels, formulate long term and short term roadmap for development of market and provide focal point for close coordination with the stakeholders to ensure smooth implementation of the measures taken. With reference to further developing the debt markets, a meeting of the domestic Credit rating agencies (Cras) was held at SECP, which was attended by a represen-

tative from SBP. in the meeting it was decided that a committee comprising officials of SECP, SBP and Cras shall be constituted to look into the existing regulatory framework for Cras in line with the international best practices; the existing regulatory framework for Cras and their code of conduct; capital structure of Cras and their listing on the stock exchanges; and establishing a Bond Pricing agency (BPa). he said a bond valuation agency, was also under consideration. it will act as an independent entity with the role to provide fair valuations of debt securities issued by governments and corporations based on comprehensive data collection, validation, pricing, and dissemination to the stakeholders. InsuranCE sECTor: regarding the developments in the insurance sector, he said SECP has approved the draft Takaful rules. Takaful, the islamic alternative to traditional insurance is a scheme based on the principles of mutual assistance in compliance with the provisions of the sharia and which provides for mutual financial aid and assistance to the participants in case of occurrence of certain contingencies and whereby the participants mutually agree to contribute to the common fund for that purpose. TakEovEr rEGulaTIons: With regard to the Takeover Laws, he said SECP had organised a roundtable meeting representatives of the corporate sector on proposed amendments to the 2008 Takeover regulations. a final roundtable with the stakeholders is to be held in Karachi to finalise the matter.


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news

Pakistan to look into USAID economic dispatch model

Basmati Growers Association warns quarters over declining trend LAHORE

ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT

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aKiSTan has assured the United States agency for international Development (USaiD) that it will look into its proposed Economic Dispatch model (EDm) to resolve various issues of the power sector. a USaiD team led by advisor Technical, Bob Collins gave a presentation on EDm to the ministry of water and power on Wednesday in order to improve the power sector. minister for Water and Power Syed naveed Qamar also attended the briefing. The main focus of the presentation was power system analysis, economic dispatch and fuel requirements, generation mix and financial impact of dispatch model and other related issues. it is important to mention that the government has managed to carry out the loss mapping exercise in generation and distribution companies with the assistance of USaiD. many of the recommendations of the agency are already under implementation to improve the power system. The minister said the ministry would further study the proposed model as EDm will help to resolve various issues of power sector. he briefed USaiD team that efforts were being made to improve the power sector by reducing line losses and gap between demand and supply. The reforms in the power sector, outsourcing of public sector plants, construction of mega dams and hydel projects, measures to change the energy mix for cheaper energy, ending of circular debt, reduction in line losses and recovery of outstanding dues are were also discussed as the major policy parameters of the government to improve the sector.

Khattak made provincial coordinator IslaMabaD: The government on Wednesday transferred Deputy Secretary ministry of Petroleum Shabbir Khan Khattak as provincial coordinator for naDra’s Citizen Damages Compensation Programme. he is a grade 19 officer of the secretariat group. STAFF REPORT

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STAFF REPORTER

aSmaTi Growers association (BGa) has warned of declining trend in output of extra long grain and aromatic basmati rice if quarters concerned failed to take drastic measures for introduction of high yielding varieties, minimising post-harvest losses, focusing on value addition as well as removing hurdles in its trademark registration. at present production level, Pakistan’s basmati export potential stands at $4 billion, while we hardly touch one billion dollar mark, said hamid malhi President BGa, while talking to members of agriculture Journalist association (aJa) at Lahore Chamber of Commerce and industry (LCCi) on Wednesday. among others, munawar hasan, President aJa, Sibghat Ullah Vice President, rana Fawad Secretary General, Farooq Bajwa and amin Chatha spoke on the occasion. instead of increasing output of basmati rice, malhi said, its production has seen stagnation for last several years due to multiple factors and it is feared that it would start reducing gradually if corrective measures are not taken. he added that stagnant prices since 2008 have also resulted in low interest of farmers in its cultivation. he expressed fear that downward trend was also feared in 2012-13. BGa president said basmati rice is part and parcel of our heritage and has a potential to become a high value asset for the national economy. however, he lamented, we did nothing for adding value to this produce with a view to harnessing its optimal utilisation. Being third biggest rice exporter, he observed, we in fact under-utilising our overall Basmati rice sector as production ranges between 2-2.6 million tons and we export around one million tons. in

comparison, he added, there has been considerable increase in india’s production and export lately. he said extra long grain super basmati was the only available variety that has been introduced since 1996. he said no other new high yielding extra long grain variety of basmati could be introduced by public sector institutions. Super basmati rice is being cultivated at over 95 per cent area and this variety could be susceptible to diseases and pest attack. he said major threats in this regard to basmati crop were bacterial leaf blight, aphids, stem borer leaf folder and paddy blast. Comparing produce of india and Pakistan, malhi said basmati growing areas in Punjab comprised of 15 districts where 90 per cent basmati was produced. in contrast, he added, only four per cent basmati is produced in india (Punjab) and rest is produced in what he called the non-basmati areas. regarding export front, he termed bulk sales as one of the biggest hurdles in augmenting export volume, saying retail marketing should be given priority by giving incentives for developing brands basmati. he said registration of geographical indication of basmati should also be pushed besides its trademark registration. he said Pakistan should enhance trade ties with india, but basmati exports should not be allowed as they would be against the interest of Pakistan.

karaCHI: Despite impressive earnings growth, the country’s banks underperformed KSE 100 index by 16 per cent in 2011, viewed the analysts at Topline research Wednesday. Thus, while Pakistan banking sector is now trading close to book value ( 50 per cent discount to 5 –year average P/BV of 2.0x), the sector is also trading at a deeper discount of 33 per cent when compared to market which is now trading at 1.5x on book value( KSE100 average P/BV of 2.2 in last 5 years). “our sample includes 5 banks (nBP, UBL, mCB, BaFL and hBL) which represent 67 per cent of market capitalisation and contribute more than 55 per cent of the total industry deposits,” said Farhan mahmood. The analyst said global financial instability, slowdown in local economy and higher interest rates created doubts in the minds of investors to take exposure in banking sector as these factors may lead to higher non performing loans. STAFF REPORT

SBP wants quarterly un-audited CARs report

karaCHI: Unilateral Tariff Concession to Pakistan given by European Union (EU) while securing a waiver of World Trade organisation (WTo) rules is going to be oxygen for Pakistani textile exports, already going down for the last couple of months. The country’s textile exports which have already been decreased by 3.79 per cent during the first seven months of the current financial due to the reduction in cotton price in international market and severe energy crisis in the country, could regain their movement if the EU facility was availed at a maximum level. This was said by Ziad Bashir, Chairman Landhi association of Trade and industry (LaTi), while appreciating the approval of EU’s waiver request in WTo on custom duties for 75 items, mostly textile related, from Pakistan to help the country recover from 2010 floods. it is worth mentioning here that EU had offered this one-time facility to Pakistan and approached WTo in october 2010 to seek a waiver on trade preferences to islamabad on these products amounting to almost 900 million euros in import value, or 27 per cent of imports from Pakistan for a twoyear period from January 2012 to December 2013. STAFF REPORT

Somali Piracy impact on global economy nears $7 billion in 2011 KARACHI

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STAFF REPORT

hE cost of Somali Piracy to the world economy has been increased to around $7 billion in 2011 due to the increasing threats to shipments of goods by Somali pirates. approximately 80 per cent of all costs are borne by the shipping industry, while governments account for 20 per cent of the expenditures associated with countering piracy attacks. The estimated economic cost of piracy was between $6.6 and $6.9 billion in 2011. according to a report of oceans Beyond Piracy released on Wednesday, in 2011, 31 ransoms were paid

to Somali pirates, totaling around $160 million. The average ransom was approximately $5 million, up from around $4 million in 2010. While 2011 saw a lower success rate for Somali pirates, the increased price of ransoms meant that pirates received greater revenue for fewer hijackings. according to the report, mV Suez crew, in which many captives from both Pakistan and india were held hostage by Somali pirates, was released after the payment of $2.1 million in 13 June 2011. The sailors who were captured on board of mV Suez were released by the pirates after paying a huge ransom by Pakistani human rights activist, ansar Burney. in 2011, Somali pirates at-

tacked 237 ships, and successfully hijacked 281. Piracy impacts multiple stakeholders, none more so than the seafarers attacked, held hostage, or killed. Specifically analysing the economic impact of Somali piracy, the fresh report of oceans Beyond Piracy assesses nine different direct cost factors specifically focused on the economic impact of Somali piracy. anna Bowden, the report’s author explained that “over the past year we have had substantial cooperation from maritime stakeholders which has helped to ensure that the figures are as reliable as possible.” The breakdown of the most notable costs includes $2.7 billion in fuel costs associated with increased

laHorE: Lahore Chamber of Commerce and industry has urged Federal Board of revenue to help stop smuggling of plastic moulding compound from iran by land route as the government will suffer a huge loss of rs25 billion annually if the practice goes on unchecked. LCCi President irfan Qaiser Sheikh was talking to a delegation of plastic importers and traders association led by chairman of the association Sheikh mohammad ayub here on Wednesday. LCCi President, after having an hour-long meeting with the delegation, said that it is very surprising that on the one hand the FBr authorities were playing arm-twisting with the exiting tax payers by issuing Sros like 821(i) 2011 while on the other hand the menace of smuggling is fast spreading its tentacles under their watch and at the cost exchequer. irfan Qaiser Sheikh said authorities concerned should immediately ban import of polyethene and polyproplene from iran via land route from any border of Pakistan as at present these products are available in the local market at rs20 per kg below the imported price that is very damaging for the local businessmen. STAFF REPORT

‘Banks trading at book value in Pakistan’

‘Industrialists willing on equity ‘EU trade package an oxygen sharing for energy related projects’ for textile exports’ laHorE: Prime minister Taskforce on Energy, Chairman Gohar Ejaz, has indicated that industrialists are willing on equity sharing for energy related projects to overcome the energy crisis in the country. addressing a news conference at all Pakistan Textile mills association (aPTma) office here on Wednesday, he presented five recommendations to the media before his formal briefing to the federal cabinet next week. he said the country’s law allowed third party investment and industrialists were ready to sacrifice their resources. he pointed out that around 1,000 mmCFD additional gas could generated in the system if the government acted upon the taskforce recommendations in its true spirit. Ejaz said LnG import would cost some $200 million and the industry was ready to share 26 per cent equity with the government, suggesting that the government should allocate funds from rs40 billion investment development surcharge, already collected by the government from industry. STAFF REPORT

LCCI warns FBR over plastic compound smuggling

speeds of vessels transiting through high risk areas, $1.3 billion for military operations, and $1.1 billion for security equipment and armed guards. additionally, $635 million is attributed to insurance, $486 to $680 million is spent on re-routing vessels along the western coast of india, and $195 million is the estimated cost for increased labor costs and danger pay for seafarers. The vast majority (99 per cent) of the billions spent are attached to recurring costs associated with the protection of vessels - costs which must be repeated each year. This figure is in sharp contrast to the $38 million spent for prosecution, imprisonment, and building regional and Somali capacity to fight piracy.

karaCHI: State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has advised all microfinance Banks (mFBs) to report their quarterly unaudited Capital adequacy returns to its Banking Surveillance Department as per the reporting format prescribed in annexure-a of Prudential regulation no. 4 for microfinance Banks within 18 working days of the end of each calendar quarter. First such statement for the quarter ended December 2011 should be sent by 29th February, 2012, says BSD Circular Letter no. 02 of 2012 issued to the presidents/chief of all mFBs. mFBs are also required to submit the annual audited Capital adequacy returns within three months of the end of each calendar year, the circular letter added. STAFF REPORT

Pakistan, Mexico mull to strengthen trade ties IslaMabaD: mexico is keen to expand its trade and investment relations with Pakistan, considering it an important market for various products. This was stated by Pakistan’s honorary Consul in mexico mark mcGuiness, during a meeting with President of islamabad Chamber of Commerce and industry (iCCi), Yassar Sakhi Butt. ambassador of Pakistan in mexico Lt Gen (r), masood aslam also accompanied him. honorary Consul informed more than 80 per cent of mexican trade was with USa as evident of last year’s trade figures of $400 billion. he said mutual efforts to strengthen bilateral relations and cooperation in diverse fields should be made to enhance the volume of bilateral trade between the two countries During the meeting, ambassador of Pakistan noted that it was essential that private sectors of both the countries should interact more frequently. he said there was tremendous untapped potential in both the markets. STAFF REPORT

Govt gives priority to pollution free environment laHorE: Special assistant to Chief minister Punjab for Food and Environment, muhammad mansha Ullah Butt has said the government attaches top priority to provide suitable and friendly atmosphere to the people of all districts. he disclosed this during a briefing by the environment department, here on Wednesday. Secretary Environment Punjab Sajjad Salim hotiyana and other officers were also present on this occasion. he said public awareness campaigns are need of the hour to put an end to the environmental pollution. Cm’s special assistant directed the officers concerned to launch a campaign against smoke emitting vehicles and took stern action so that neat, clean and pollution free environment could be ensured for the people. STAFF REPORT

KCCI launches cancer awareness campaign karaCHI: Karachi Chamber of Commerce and industry (KCCi), President, mian abrar ahmad, launched the cancer awareness and prevention of cancer in children campaign in the national institute of Child health, here on Wednesday. Speaking on the occasion, mian abrar ahmad highlighted that KCCi has embarked upon the programme to connect the academia with corporate sector and to turn this vision into action. Efforts are underway to establish a state-of-the-art university of KCCi. STAFF REPORT


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Thursday, 09 February, 2012

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APCNGA gives list of stations to start checking ISLAMABAD

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STAFF REPORT

LL Pakistan CnG association has selected 137 CnG station across the country to start implementing the CnG safety exercise which will make binding on all vehicles to get rFiD chip based stickers to get CnG refilling at the stations. an official source said this information was provided at the meeting of the ministerial CnG safety task force on Wednesday. The meeting was chaired by Joint Secretary admin ministry of Petroleum hamid asghar Khan was held to review progress of the recommendations of the oil and Gas regulatory authority (oGra) regarding safety of CnG cylinders and kits. The meeting was attended by senior officers of oGra, hydrocarbon Development institute of Pakistan (hDiP) and Chairman all Pakistan CnG association (aPCnGa). aPCnGa informed that 137 CnG stations have been pinpointed for establishment of CnG safety monitoring regime in the first phase and a list of these stations has been forwarded to oGra for clearance. moreover, computerised monitoring equipment has been provided by aPCnGa to hDiP and oGra. The meeting was informed that training sessions by expert engineers for CnG station personnel have been completed by hDiP in is-

lamabad head office, Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, and Quetta regional offices. Criteria for vehicular monitoring and recommendations regarding placement of CnG cylinders in public service and private vehicles have been prepared by hDiP and would be shared with oGra and aPCnGa before submission to ministry of Petroleum. For

CnG cylinders be fitted in private vehicles. The task force authorized hDiP to finalise location of CnG Cylinders in public service vehicles after carrying out technical study.

hDiP informed that technical screening of proposals for selection of third party monitoring laboratories would be completed in one week. The members emphasized that uniform standards for manpower and monitoring fees would be maintained across the country and recommendations finalized by the task force would be presented to Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) for approval.

commercial passenger vehicles, oGra has recommended that only two CnG cylinders be allowed in Light Transport Vehicles (LTV) and a maximum of four cylinders in heavy Transport Vehicles (hTV) while as only one

03

India Show Exhibition being put up on 11 Feb LAHORE STAFF REPORT

EDEraL minister for Commerce makhdoom amin Fahim, accompanied by Lahore Chamber of Commerce and industry (LCCi) President irfan Qaiser Sheikh will inaugurate a three-day india Show Exhibition on 11th of February at 10:30 am at the Lahore Expo Centre. Federation of indian Chambers of Commerce and industries (FiCCi) in collaboration with the indian ministry of commerce and industries; supported by commerce ministry of Pakistan and LCCi, is organising this exhibition to raise awareness of indian products in Pakistan from 11-13 February, 2012. LCCi is mainly arranging an inter-active session of the businessmen of Pakistan and india. a high-powered indian CEos delegation led by FiCCi President, r V Kanoria will accompany indian commerce industry and Textile minister, anand Sharma, during his visit to Pakistan. The indian minister will be the chief guest at the closing ceremony of india Show Exhibition. irfan Qaiser Sheikh said the expo would help jack-up volume of bilateral trade between Pakistan and india, as presently a major portion of trade between the two countries in being done through third country. LCCi always wants trade with bordering countries for being more efficient in terms of cost and logistics, he added. more than 50 prominent indian companies will exhibit their products spread around 110 stalls in hall no. 2 of Lahore Expo Centre. Products will range from manufacturing, services, chemicals, engineering, textiles and apparels, consumer durables, gems and jewellery, cosmetics, handicrafts, auto components, healthcare, etc. Three hours in each of the days will remain open for general visitors while the morning hours will remain dedicated to business visitors. Business-to-business meetings during the days of the exhibition are being organised by TDaP in collaboration with LCCi. one time permission has been granted by Government of Pakistan to exhibit indian goods and services beyond the positive list and counter sale of products. indian CEos delegation will comprise of more than 100 business delegates, accompanying the indian minister from wide cross section of indian corporate sector, will have business meetings at Lahore, Karachi and islamabad. indian commerce and industry minister will be visiting Pakistan to accelerate the positive movements. FiCCi hopes that the much awaited decision to move towards a negative list approach for trade with india will be announced soon. This will be a precursor to granting mFn status to india. at present, a large volume of goods are being traded through informal channels via third countries. The mFn status is likely to facilitate direct trade, and benefit both the producers and consumers. FiCCi has always been at the forefront of improving bilateral economic ties with Pakistan and SaarC region as a whole. FiCCi strongly feels that the current environment is filled with positivism and we must strive to seize this opportunity.

F

CORPORATE CORNER Nestlé Pakistan shows sustainable growth, announces annual results laHorE : nestlé Pakistan announced top line growth of 26per cent for the year ending 31st December 2011 at the meeting of the Board of Directors of the Company held in Lahore today. The company’s net profit closed at rs4.668 Billion for the year ending 31st December 2011 registering an increase of 13.5 per cent as compared to the corresponding period last year. Keeping in view the good financial performance of the company, in addition to the interim dividends of rs25 per share paid during the year, the Board of Directors has recommended paying a final cash dividend of rs40 per share. PRESS RELEASE

PTCL doubles up Vfone package offer IslaMabaD: Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) has launched an exciting Vfone ‘Double Balance’ offer for its customers to recharge their Vfone accounts and get an additional free balance equal to the load amount. applicable for Win subscribers, the Vfone Double Balance offer allows those customers who have not recharged their accounts since august 31, 2011 to re-load and get an additional free balance equal to the load amount absolutely free. not just that, Vfone customers can use the free balance acquired through this offer for on-net calling, internet and SmS to on-net and off-net networks for 30 days. PRESS RELEASE

Credit ratings of Standard Chartered Leasing Limited upgraded karaCHI: Pakistan Credit rating agency (PaCra) has upgraded the long-term and shortterm ratings of Standard Chartered Leasing

Limited (SCLL) to “aa” (Double a), and “a1+” (a one Plus) respectively. [Previous: aa-/a1+]. The ratings reflect SCLL’s strong association with Standard Chartered Bank (Pakistan) Limited (SCBPL), the majority shareholder in the company. over the years the integration between the parent and the company has further strengthened, capitalising on the strong franchise of SCBPL. PRESS RELEASE

DG Quality Assurance HEC visits GIFT university laHorE: GiFT University Gujranwala had the honor to welcome ms Zia Batool, Director General Quality assurance and Statistics of higher Education Commission Pakistan (hEC). She was accompanied with Deputy Director Quality assurance mr nasir Shah and mr munir ahmad. The purpose of this visit was to develop better understanding and coordination between GiFT University and Quality assurance agency (Qaa). GiFT University is fully committed to imparting quality education. The management understands that offering quality education is not a destination it’s a journey which involves continuous improvement in the quality parameters. The focus of the visit, therefore, was seeking the guidance and advice of Qaa for further enhancing the standards of education at GiFT. PRESS RELEASE

President ABF worried over SBP report on banking practices laHorE: President american Business Forum (aBF) Salim Ghauri has expressed deep concerns over State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) latest report regarding practice of scheduled banks massively investing in government papers, including 82 per cent of entire treasury bills and 89 per cent of islamic Sukuk bonds. he said the banking sector in Pakistan is reluctant in extending loans to private sector,

adding further pressure on economy in a situation when both inflationary pressure coupled with fiscal and trade deficits was dampening economic growth of the country. he said the imF has indicated in its latest report that the fiscal deficit is likely to be 7 per cent of GDP during current fiscal. inflation would be climbing up further with printing of more money by the government to meet the fiscal gap, he added. The banks, on the other hand, are investing hugely into the purchase of treasury bills without any check and bounds, he deplored. PRESS RELEASE

NBP starts branch management training karaCHI: President and CEo nBP Qamar hussain has earlier set ambitious plans of transforming national Bank of Pakistan as a Customer Focused Bank through focusing on intangibles such as improving human capital. For the achievement of the same goal, he set up a human resource Training and optimisation group led by Dr mirza abrar Baig which recently started a three weeks “Effective Branch management Training Programme” for the branch managers and operations manager starting from today. The training sessions are currently being held at Pearl Continental hotel, Karachi. PRESS RELEASE

RAWALPINDI: Quratulain Baloch performing at PearlContinental Rawalpindi. PRESS RELEASE

LAHORE: Prof. Dr AQ Saleem, Yousuf Khan, Abdul Jabbar Kazi, Nusrat Mirza, M Arif Dossal, Madiha Saleem and Khalid Wahab in a workshop conducted by the Commecs Institute of Business and Emerging Sciences. PRESS RELEASE

UBL fund launches tele-transact service karaCHI: UBL Fund managers, one of the leading asset management companies in Pakistan announced the launch of its latest value added service for clients calledUBL Funds “TeleTransact”. This service will allow UBL Funds clients to place transactions in their investment account by simply calling the company’s toll-free number. While similar services are offered by Banks under the ambit of “Phone Banking”, this is the first time such a facility has been introduced in the mutual funds industry by any asset management Company. PRESS RELEASE

KARACHI: The Grandeur art gallery held private collection of famous artists at its premises. Picture Shows Grandeur CEO Neshmia Ahmed, Jimmy Engineer, and Yasmeen Haider with artists. PRESS RELEASE

Profit E-paper 9th February, 2012  

Profit E-paper 9th February, 2012

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