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Social sector performed well in the first 100 days of PTI government however more efforts are required for economic stability: Mian Zahid Hussain

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former provincial minister, Mian Zahid Hussain on Friday said that performance of PTI lead government in first 100 days have been better in social sector, however, for economic stability of Pakistan a lot of efforts are needed. The Prime Minister Imran Khan while addressing the ceremony on completion of 100 days of the government described that 18 deliverables have been completed while 14 others are in process. The most significant amongst the completed projects include tracing of illegal wealth, preparation of local government act in KP, Punjab and ICT, Regulation for instant access to justice, economic package for growth of manufacturing sector, Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme and establishment of National Tourism Board.

The Veteran Business Leader while talking to the business community said that Pakistan has made mutual agreements with 26 different countries regarding sharing information and recover the looted assets, if succeed can be highly beneficial to the national exchequer. The deliverables in process include the integration of FATA with KPK, establishment of South Punjab province, transformation of Karachi, poverty alleviation, national employment scheme and development of state owned industries. The government has successfully recovered land worth Rs. 350 billion as a result of effective anti-encroachment drive.

The Former Minister said the successful foreign visits of the Prime Minister Imran Khan have boost the bilateral relations with the countries including Saudi Arabia, China, UAE and Malaysia. Inauguration of Kartarpur corridor became possible given to the successful foreign policy of the Government. Sikh visitors to Pakistan will be increased significantly in addition to close bonding with the Sikh community. The act is beneficial to Pakistan’s hotel and allied industries.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that in addition to claims of prosperity and growth, it is significant that the ease of doing business should be provided and investors’ trust should be restored highly to invest in the Country. Major hike in USD price is quite anxious, soon after completion of 100 days of government. The rupee devaluation will not only affect the stock exchange, inflation, price hike of utilities but will increase the burden of foreign debts up to Rs. 700 billion.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that government should adopt trade friendly policy and concrete measures should be taken to reduce the trade deficit. Moreover, the export industry may be provided gas and electricity on competitive rates in order to increase country’s exports and reduce cost of doing business of the industry.

Zameen Property Expo 2018 Multan concludes successfully, with approximately 30 exhibitors

The biggest online property portal in Pakistan, Zameen.com, successfully arranged its first Zameen Property Expo in Multan on November 24 and 25, at the renowned Amir Rajput Marquee.

The event featured projects from all over Pakistan at 30 stalls, with options from Multan, Lahore, Islamabad, Gujranwala, Bahawalpur, and Rahim Yar Khan on offer.

Two of the top names in Pakistan’s real estate industry, Royal Orchard Multan and Capital Smart City, were the major sponsors of the event, which was attended by visitors from Multan and its surrounding areas.

The Expo was inaugurated by Commissioner Multan Mr Imran Sikandar Baloch, who was then taken on a round of the stalls to meet the exhibitors. He expressed his appreciation of the event, and lauded Zameen.com for its solid reputation in the market. Ex-Governor Punjab Mr Rafique Rajwana also attended the event as a Special Guest, and took a round of the stalls.

Speaking on the occasion, Zameen.com CEO Zeeshan Ali Khan said that he was quite satisfied with the success of the event, which was the first of its kind in Multan. “It takes months, not just weeks of preparation, to organise any event at such a large scale, and the success of this expo is the amalgamation of teamwork and effort.”

He added that Zameen.com has held over 15 events, which have been attended by more than 750,000 visitors, and this is one of the many reasons why it is the first name of trust in the real estate industry.

“The way we do business in Pakistan has changed over the years, and Zameen.com has embraced this change by using the latest technology to innovate the real estate industry of Pakistan”, said Khan.

He also announced that the next series of Zameen Expo would be held in 2019, with events in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, and for the first time, in Peshawar. He further announced that the third edition of Pakistan Property Show Dubai would be held in September 2019.

Rohde & Schwarz presents solutions for secure communications at IDEAS 2018

The German-based Rohde & Schwarz group presented its state-of-the-art secure communications products and systems in Karachi. The electronics group, headquartered in Munich (Germany), has a global presence and is among the world market leaders in its established business fields.

In the field of secure communications, the company is displaying SCA-compliant software-defined radios with high-data rate waveforms and VoIP-based communications solutions for naval platforms and for air traffic control (ATC). Rohde & Schwarz is the general contractor of the joint radio system of the German armed forces for digitizing land-based operations.

R&S SDxR – Tactical networked radios

The core of this new generation of software-defined radios is an SCA (Software Communications Architecture) 2.2.2 radio platform, which marks a revolutionary change in tactical communications. The SCA radio platform supports standardized, legacy and Rohde & Schwarz proprietary waveforms and makes it easy to port waveforms.

The new member of the R&S SDxR family for airborne communications offers advanced command and control (C2) capabilities to achieve information superiority and total situational awareness. The R&S SDAR is the only software defined airborne radio that meets both military and civil safety avionics standards, providing full independence for joint civil-military operations

The R&S SDTR is optimized for use in vehicles, meeting stringent requirements on vibration, size, and weight and power consumption. It features high output power without external amplifiers and integrated cosite filters for interference-free operation.

The R&S SDHR is a multiband handheld radio system that supports up to two voice channels and IP data transmission in parallel. It has been designed for use by dismounted soldiers under harsh field conditions.

The R&S HDR (high data rate) waveforms support IP-based applications and can be used to set up robust and secure network topologies. MANET functionality provides access to radio nodes even across networks and beyond topographical restraints.

Communications are jam-resistant and tap-proof by means of TRANSEC (very fast frequency hopping) and COMSEC (high-level encryption).

R&S NAVICS- Naval integrated communications system

R&S NAVICS is a reliable solution for internal and external communications on all ship classes. It offers innovative IP technology and state-of-the-art user friendliness.

Modern voice terminals with smartphone-like operation provide connections between all designated locations on board.

The use of IP allows the system to be easily expanded in order to include additional communications services such as video-over-IP/CCTV, broadcast and alarm (BAA) and ship’s telephone equipment (STE) subsystems. R&S NAVICS permits integration with wireless headset systems or an on-board wireless communications system (WCS) to allow freedom of movement, e.g. on the bridge, the flight deck and the entire ship.

R&S VCS-4G – Voice communications system

The IP-based voice communications system is a flexible and cost-effective solution for all voice communications needs for civil ATC, military ATC and air-defence deployments. It meets established requirements for availability, reliability and safety as well as the growing need for dynamic scenarios with network-based sharing and distribution of operational resources. Built on future-ready technology, the R&S VCS-4G ensures protection of investment and provides next-generation ATC features, such as a virtual centre

The R&S VCS-4G enables full-featured radiocommunications between air traffic controllers and pilots, including specific radio remote control operations if required. Voice services such as intercom, telephony and IP PABX are supported. The R&S VCS-4G solution follows a modern decentralised approach.

IDEAS becomes the most successful exhibition of defence products worldwide: Mian Zahid Hussain

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and Former Provincial Minister, Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said that International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS) has now become the most successful exhibition of defence products worldwide. The exhibition has started in 2010 with participation of 42 delegations from 15 different countries. In IDEAS-2018, 260 international delegations are participating from 52 different countries while 522 companies from across globe are exhibiting their products. Turkish pavilion is the largest in the exhibition comprised of 1750 Sq. Meters. China, Turkey, Russia, US, France, Germany, South Korea, Azerbaijan, Ukraine and many other countries are participating in the event bringing the defence products manufacturers closer. Foreign delegations are headed by respective chiefs of armed forces and ministers which effectively serves the purpose of building long term trade ties between the decision makers and trader of defence products.

The Veteran Business Leader while talking to the business community said that Pakistan is growing in respect of defence productions and attaining latest defence technologies. Currently defence exports of the Country stood at $ 300 million which are expected to grow further after IDEAS-2018 as described by the Defence Export Promotion Organization (DEPO).

The Former Minister said that IDEAS is a distinguished defence products exhibition across the globe, which not only exhibit the arms & ammunitions but also present the related modern equipments, vehicles and supplies related to logistics, engineering, internal security. It also exhibit latest machinery and equipments required for Air, Land and Maritime defence. Institutions and people from services sector including research and development, laboratories, teaching and training, software houses also interact with the potential customers and offers their services for the development of countries’ defence capabilities in light of latest innovations and developments.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that IDEAS plays an effective role in Business to Business (B2B) meetings between international buyers and sellers of defence products and services. In IDEAS 2016, 264 B2B meetings have been held between delegations of 36 different countries which lead to hundreds of defence agreements between the nations. Pakistan Army, Maritime and Air Force will hold two day conferences to promote Pakistan’s strategic and defence capabilities amongst the participants comprised of civil military authorities of participating countries.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that export oriented industry exhibitions (EXPO) held every year but unable to achieve the desired results of growth in Country’s exports. If TDAP had learnt from IDEAS, the Country wouldn’t have faced trade deficit.

IBA and KUL organise a panel discussion on Pakistan’s Water Scarcity in the 21st century

The IBA in collaboration with Karachi Urban Lab (KUL) conducted an engaging panel discussion on Pakistan’s Water Scarcity in the 21st Century. The aim of the panel discussion was to understand the causes for the severe water crisis prevalent in our country, and discuss the best possible course of action to tackle the imminent threat. The event was attended by students, faculty, environmentalists and media representatives.

Director KUL and Professor at IBA Dr. Nausheen Anwar commenced the event by familiarizing the audience with the purpose of KUL which is to encourage critical thinking of urban issues, out of which water is a major one. She highlighted the importance of water as a part of the urban landscape that not only connects to the cities but also to other terrains, which include ecology, conflicts, governance and institutional dynamics. Journalist and Geographer Afia Salam with other esteemed panellists from Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (CST), Hisaar Foundation and NED UET began the panel discussion by focusing on the complex dynamics that have shaped Pakistan’s current state of water scarcity. Salaam moderated the event with her extensive knowledge about Pakistan’s water scarcity issues. The panellists probed into how and why Pakistan has gotten to this stage, what kinds of policies and pragmatic solutions are viable for surmounting the challenge, and what should be a collective ’water vision’ as we go forward.

An eminent hydrologist from CST, Dr. Hassan Abbas, gave an extensive account of the history of water management and water flow in Pakistan, since the Mughal era and the British colonial rule. He talked about the historical engineering of the Indus River Basin, and its significance to water supply, distribution and management at different scales. He also discussed the current policy focus on building dams.

Mr. Faisal Hassan, an award winning agriculturalist from Punjab, commented on the significant relationship between agriculture farming, water and climate change. According to him, monocropping is leading to soil erosion. He said, “Right now we are farming with dirt. If we go into crop rotation, we will have a better organic build up, less diseases and would require lesser amount of pesticides.”

Moving on, Urban Planner and Dean Architecture Department, NED-UET Dr. Noman Ahmed discussed the reasons that have triggered Karachi’s water supply challenges and what is required to surmount them. He discussed how the utilization of water has increased over the years due to population growth, changes in lifestyle, and a continuous cycle of migration.

Environmental Practitioner Hisaar Foundation, Sanaa Baxamoosa proceeded to highlight the importance of water conservation. She said that water is such a complex issue because it poses challenges on several fronts, such as water scarcity, equity, quality, access. She mentioned that it is high time that the government and the citizens realise the true value of water, because currently in the urban rural setting, citizens pay for water for their daily usage. However, the price of water for the poor is much higher.

The latter part of the discussion dealt with the solutions presented by the panellists to combat the issue of water scarcity in Pakistan. The panellists agreed that there needs to be an integrated approach to preserving water, which makes use of social sciences and cultural sciences, and a need to rethink the water economic models. Dr. Ahmed suggested the creation of an artificial water front such as the San Antonio River in Texas. He believed that Karachi has the geographical landscape to sustain such a model. The panellists also highlighted the need to control water pollution, and to bring about efficiency in the irrigation system that Pakistan inherited more than 150 years ago.

JS Bank partners with karigar training institute

JS Bank has joined hands with Karigar Training Institute (KTI), a not-for-profit organization which provides training in vocational skills for mechanics, electricians & plumbers.

KTI trainees or alumni can now become independent entrepreneurs by availing financing solutions through the JS Prime Minister Youth Business Loan (PMYBL) scheme, at a highly subsidized mark-up rate of 6% per annum. Applicants aging between 21 & 45 years, with entrepreneurship and business management skills imparted through Karigar, are eligible to apply for the scheme.

Reflecting on this alliance, Mr. Babbar Wajid, Head of Product Development & Business Management, JS Bank stated, “Through this partnership, we aim to open doors to the common man who struggles to become financially independent. I am positive that this is just the start to something much bigger that can bring about a change we require in the social & economic sectors of Pakistan.”

Speaking at the occasion, Commodore (Retd.) S. Rashid Ullah, Director Operations, Karigar Training Institute, stated “We highly appreciate JS Bank’s initiative towards enabling these young individuals and ensure full support from Karigar Training Institute in this respect”

JS Bank, one of Pakistan’s leading and fastest growing financial institutions is continually undertaking efforts to drive economic growth and development in Pakistan.

ISL Artists in Residence Program to be recognized at the European Parliament!

The Corporate Art Awards 2018 are scheduled to be held on the 29th of November in Brussels at the European Parliament. International Steels Limited “ISL”, a winner of the 2017 Awards, is one of only 6 of previous year’s honorees who have been invited to be recognized on the European Union platform for their contribution towards promoting art in the corporate world.

The award ceremony will be held at the European Parliament where companies and organizations from 20 countries will present their art initiatives. The president of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani is expected to open the conference. During the ceremony the awards for the 2018 winners will be announced with the aim to recognize the selected outstanding initiatives of 2017, in which ISL has been nominated.

Professor Luca Desiata of Luiss Business School commented, “ISL is one of the few companies from the 2017 awards that have been invited to the European Parliament to be recognized for their efforts towards inspiring art in the corporate world. ISL’s Artists in Residence Program is a fine example of how a large scale manufacturing industry can play a greater role in promoting art by virtue of their scale and capabilities and create a meaningful impact in the world of art”.

Samir Chinoy, Executive Director, ISL said, “This is a great honor for Pakistan and ISL, that a company from Pakistan is getting recognized globally. ISL is proud to be the only large scale steel manufacturer whose initiative is represented on a global art platform such as the pptArt Award. We are thankful for this recognition and we hope to continue supporting art and emerging artists of Pakistan, as enablers and facilitators”.

In 2017, ISL became the first and only Asian company to be selected for the award, alongside 80 leading global companies and 20 institutions from 18 different nations such as The Absolut company (Sweden), Fiat (Italy), Canada Steamship Lines, Davidoff and Mobiliar from Switzerland, Lufthansa (Germany), HBC from USA (owners of Saks Fifth Avenue, Lord and Taylor, Galeria Kaufhof, Gilt online portal) and Montefiore Medical Center (USA) among others.

The pptArt Awards aim to enforce visibility, recognition and reputation for the best practices in the collaboration between the corporate world and the Art world globally.

The International Steels Limited’s (ISL) pioneering “ISL Artists in Residence” Program was a unique platform that brought together some of Pakistani’s most talented emerging artists. Held in collaboration with Canvas Gallery, a leading art authority of Pakistan, the Residency was a manifestation of ISL’s commitment to incubate and facilitate the culture of art and nurture individual artists by providing an enabling environment

FB: https://www.facebook.com/ISLArtistsinResidence/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/islartistsinresidence/

Call for Girls’ Education Task Force to enroll 12 million out of school girls

To mark the first 100 days of the new Pakistan government, education activists joined forces to call for the urgent convening of a national Girls’ Education Task Force. Ms. Marriyum Amjad of Awaz CDS shared, “The most alarming fact notes that the net enrolment rate for girls stands at 72% at primary level; this comes down to 45% at middle school level and further drops to 27% at secondary level[1]. This shows that while Pakistan has made strides in the realm of primary education for girls, greater attention and a coherent national policy is required to bridge the gender gap at secondary and higher secondary levels”. The girl’s education fact sheets bring together key data from various government departments and development organizations, presenting an overview of the situation at both a national and provincial level. They include key policy recommendations unique to each province. As a first step to address this glaring concern, Pakistan Coalition for Education (PCE), Awaz Foundation Pakistan, Pakistan Youth Change Advocates (PYCA), Social Youth Council of Patriots (SYCOP) and Idara Baraye Taleem-o-Tariqi (IBT) are urging the federal and provincial governments to form a Girls Education Task Force for devising a National Education Policy.

Ms. Areebah Shahid, Executive Director PYCA also praised the recent efforts of the Federal Minister for Education, Mr. Shafqat Mehmood for responding to a long-awaited request of the civil society to call an inter-provincial meeting of the education ministers to chalk out key priority areas for education reforms in the country. Launching a series of fact sheets to draw attention to the state of girls’ education, the organizations – including Pakistan Coalition for Education (PCE), Awaz Foundation Pakistan, Pakistan Youth Change Advocates (PYCA), Social Youth Council of Patriots (Sycop),and IdaraBarayeTaleem-o-Taraqi (IBT)- called on the new government to make girls’ education a specific priority as part of its new National Education Plan.

Additionally, the civil society organizations are also demanding that the national spending on education be increased to 4-6% of the GDP (with an annual increase of 1%); benchmark indicators and minimum quality standards for education should be defined and followed across the country; greater infrastructural investment should be made for girls’ higher secondary schools and the scope of Article 25-A of the Constitution of Pakistan (that pledges free and quality education for every child between 5 – 16 years) should be expanded to cover the first 12 years of education.

Byco Petroleum Reports Gross Profit of Rs 1.7 Billion For 1Q18, Despite

For immediate release) Pakistan’s leading Oil Refining Company, Byco Petroleum Pakistan Ltd. (BPPL) announced results for its first quarter ended September 30, 2018. The company’s gross sales increased by 61% to Rs 66.4 billion from Rs 41.4 billion in the same quarter last year. The net turnover increased by 71% to Rs 53.7 billion from Rs 31.4 billion a year earlier.

The refineries sector in Pakistan experienced a tough quarter due to rising crude prices and Pak rupee depreciation. This squeezed the profitability of the sector, however, Byco managed both the risks better than the industry peers.

Byco Petroleum generated a gross profit of Rs 1.7 billion in the first quarter. The net profit for the quarter was Rs 397 million, or Rs 0.07 per share. There had been increase in manufacturing expenses as compared to same period last year mainly due to startup of the two units of the Company i.e. Reformer and Isomerization. Since start of the Isomerization Unit in July 2018, the Company has been converting 100% of its Naphtha into Motor Gasoline. Share of the Company has increased from 1% to 7% in country supply pool of Motor Gasoline.

Although Byco Petroleum is not immune to the industry-wide challenges, the company has much more to accomplish and is confident in its ability to create value for its shareholders, customers, and all other stakeholders.

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