Important Business News 24th April, 2018

  Important Business News

      24thApril, 2018

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1.                 Rs2.043trn development outlay to be approved

The National Economic Council (NEC) which is scheduled to meet on Tuesday(today) with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in the chair. The council is to approve national development outlay of Rs 2.043 trillion including Rs 1.013 trillion provincial Annual Development Plans (ADPs) for 2018-19.
The highest economic decision making body will also approve federal PSDP of Rs 1.030 billion including foreign aid of Rs 180 billion and Rs 100 billion on Public Private Participation (PPP) mode.

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2.                 SSGC-KE dispute stands resolved: PM

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said the dispute between two utilities K-Electric (KE) and Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) has been resolved as the SSGC has been issued directives to ensure required gas supply for power generation.
“SSGC will provide 190 MMCFD gas to K-Electric for power generation and even more if needed,” PM Abbasi said, addressing a press conference at the Governor House, here on Monday.

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3.                 Textile exports post 12.95pc growth in March

Exports of textile group have shown a growth of 12.95 percent during March over the same months of the last fiscal year as textile exports increased to $1.202 billion in March 2018 from $1.064 billion in March 2017.
Exports figure released by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics of select commodities for the month of March 2018 showed that exports of cotton yarn increased to $127.868 million in March 2018 from $ 97.442 million for the same period of last fiscal year, reflecting a growth of 31.22 percent while exports of cotton cloth increased to $205.026 million from $188.675 million, showing a 8.67 percent growth.

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4.                 NEC may set 6.2pc growth target

The National Economic Council (NEC) is expected to set GDP growth target of (6.2 percent) in 2018-19 with contributions from agriculture (3.8 percent), industry (7.6 percent) and services (6.5 percent). The growth targets aresubject to favourable weather conditions, managing current account deficit, consistent economic policies and aligned monetary and fiscal policies.

1 Business Recorder
5.                 National tariff policy 
The Vision 2025 prepared by PMLN in its early days of the tenure had set a target of exports of $150 billion by 2025. However, the number has in essence declined from $24.8 billion (10.7% of GDP) in FY13 to $22.0 billion (7.2% of GDP) in FY17.
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6.                 Import of capital goods

FPCCI’s senior vice president and chairman of its Budget Advisory Council, Syed Mazhar Ali Nasir, has urged the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to withdraw duty on import of capital goods because all the capital goods including plant and machinery are ultimately used by the industry.
“This will help reduce cost of import and stimulate growth of industry including expansion of existing industrial capacity and generate employment and export surplus,” he said, proposing that there should be no upfront cost on plant and machinery – new or second hand for initial installation of Balancing, Modernization or Replacement (BMR) as its installation results in taxation activity.

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7.                 US-China trade war won’t affect Pakistan: experts

Pakistan’s economy is the least integrated in the global value chain and, hence, will not suffer significantly from the recent US-China trade war in the short term. Pakistan should not worry about this rather should revisit its trade and industrial policy and direct its production incentives and preferences under free trade agreements towards products that are in demand in countries with lower trade barriers, higher consumer confidence, a stable growth outlook, and the potential for supply-chain integration.

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8.                 ‘DTRE’ exporters get major tax benefit

Following a ruling of Law & Justice Division, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has given a major tax benefit to the ‘DTRE’ exporters by allowing them to avail benefits of concessionary SROs/notifications, resulting in reduced rate of leviable taxes.

In this regard, the Model Customs Collectorates’ (MCCs) have received a clarification from the FBR on the issue of statutory rate of taxes under Duty & Tax Remission for Exporters ( DTRE) DTRE scheme.

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9.                 Number of 3G, 4G users reaches 53.24m mark by end-March

The number of 3G and 4G users in Pakistan reached 53.24 million by end-March 2018, said Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA).
The number of mobile phone users in Pakistan reached 149.10 million by end-March 2018 compared to 147.204 million by end-February 2018, which registered an increase of 1.896 million during the period under review.

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10.              SSGC-KE dispute inflicts Rs37bn losses on industry: KIF

Karachi Industrial Forum (KIF) has claimed that industries of Karachi have faced a massive financial loss of approximately Rs 37 billion during the last three weeks due to belated decision on SSGC and KE dispute on gas supply.
The presidents of all industrial town associations have appreciated the Prime Minister’s announcement that SSGC will provide 190 mmcfd to K-Electric for power generation but they said the decision has been taken after 26 days of which industries have faced financial losses of some Rs 37 billion.

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12. PSMA urges PM to ensure ‘reasonable’ prices of caustic soda

Pakistan Soap Manufacturers Association’s chairman Tanvir Ahmad Sufi has urged the Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar to take notice of soaring prices of caustic soda and direct its manufacturers to reduce their prices to reasonable levels.
Expressing concern over increase in caustic soda prices that is basic and main raw material of soap industry, he said, it is seen manufacturers of Soda Caustic are regularly increasing their prices as they had increased prices from Rs 48,500 to Rs 57,000 in 5 strokes during last six months on the pretext of hike in caustic soda prices in international market.

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13. Engro Corp posts PAT of Rs 6,837m for 1QCY18

Pakistan’s premier conglomerate, Engro Corporation announced its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2018 at a meeting held at its headquarters in Karachi.

The company posted a consolidated profit-after-tax (PAT) of Rs 6,837million compared to Rs 4,219 million in the same period last year up by 62 percent, while profit after tax (PAT) attributable to the shareholders increased to Rs 4,194 million compared to Rs 2,841 million during comparative period last year.

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14. Structural reforms critical to higher growth: ADB

Pakistan needs to continue addressing governance and security issues, increase exports, strengthen public enterprises, and improve its business and regulatory environment to attract more investment and increase productivity, says Asian Development Bank (ADB).
The “ADB and Pakistan: Fact Sheet” updated on its website stated that implementing structural economic reforms is critical for sustained and higher economic growth.

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15. China reassures on ties ahead of Xi’s meeting with Modi

China on Monday reassured Pakistan that relations between the two countries were as firm as ever and would “never rust”, ahead of a meeting this week between President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi that could unnerve Islamabad.
China and Pakistan like to call each other “all weather friends” and their traditional close ties have long been viewed with suspicion by Pakistan’s neighbour and traditional enemy, India.

24 Business Recorder
16. Govt has no plan to devalue rupee: SBP

\The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Monday assured Exchange Companies that the government has no plan to devalue Pak rupee against the dollar.
During a meeting with representatives of Exchange Companies Association of Pakistan (ECAP), the State Bank officials urged ECs to make efforts to bring the exchange rate down in open currency market.

24 Business Recorder
17. Remittance payments hit record in 2017: World Bank

Payments from immigrants back to their home countries rebounded to reach a new record in 2017 but the costs of transferring funds also increased, the World Bank saidMonday.
The stronger-than-expected recovery in remittances — payments that are key to supporting the economies of many poor countries — was driven by growth in Europe, Russia and the United States, the World Bank said in a report.
The bank estimates that officially recorded remittances to low- and middle-income countries reached $466 billion in 2017, an increase of 8.5 percent over $429 billion in 2016. They are expected to increase by about four percent this year.

24 Business Recorder
18. Growing C/A challenge
It is highly distressing that external sector position of the country continues to deteriorate. According to the latest data released by the State Bank of Pakistan, the overall current account (C/A) deficit swelled by 55 percent during the first nine months (July-March) of FY18 to reach the mark of dollar 12.029 billion as compared to dollar 7.99 billion in the corresponding period of last year.
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19. Currency exchange rates










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