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Oct 11, 1999

  1. International
  2. Finance
  3. Industry
  4. Policy
  5. Trade
  6. Gulf

White Oil Pipeline contract saved

Contract for 800km-long White Oil Pipeline from Karachi to Mehmood Kot has been saved from being scrapped again as the contractor has submitted a performance guarantee of $30m before the deadline fixed by the federal government, it is learnt from official sources.

The government had warned PARCOs—the contractor, that if it failed to furnish guarantee within a month ending Oct 5, '95 its contract for laying the Pipeline would be scrapped.

The pipeline is being laid to cater to the needs of Pak-Arab Refinery project which is currently under construction at Mehmood Kot for refining 100,000/ barrels per day of crude oil in 2001. The project was hanging in balance as the PARCO delayed submission of the guarantee.

The contract of WOPP was awarded to PARCO—a joint venture between Pakistan and Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in Feb '99, after the government had scrapped the contract with Asia Pipelines Ltd (APL).

Bullion market resumes trading

Trading in Sarafa's bullion market resumed on Friday after nearly two weeks and the Karachi Sarafa Jewellers Group (KSJG) quoted bullion rates at Rs 5,298 per 10 grams.

The last rate quoted on Sept 25 was Rs 4,732 per 10 grams, said spokesman of the KSJG.

Gems and Jewellery Show '99

Sindh Governor Mamnoon Husain called upon gem merchants and jewellers to acquire due share from the $55bn world market for gems and jewellery.

He was addressing the inaugural session of the Gems and Jewellry Show '99, organised by EPB in collaboration with gem merchants and jewellry association at a local hotel.

'A joint crusade by EPB and gems and jewellry associations is needed to promote country's jewellry exports', the Governor stressed.

The Governor said a vast potential exist for increasing exports of gems and jewellry and only concerted efforts will bring the desired results.

TCP asked to approach commercial banks

The State Bank has made no commitment to state run Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) for providing them Rs 10.80 billion credit line to fund lifting of lint cotton from ginning factories.

"The commerce secretary is wrong. The State Bank has neither sanctioned Rs 10.8 billion for TCP nor made such a commitment," said a source close to SBP.

Federal Commerce Secretary Mansoor Elahi had claimed at a press conference here on Tuesday that SBP had sanctioned a Rs 10.8 billion credit line for TCP out of the amount available for commodity operations under the 1999-2000 credit plan.

He had also said that banks were expected to release Rs 1 billion out of the total Rs 10.8 billion credit line "within a couple of days."

The source said that SBP had informed the ministry of commerce that the TCP request for sanctioning a credit line of Rs 10.8 could not be accommodated under the credit plan of 1999-2000 unless the amount was shifted to the credit for private sector. He said SBP had told the ministry that TCP should better approach commercial banks on its own for seeking any credit line instead of trying to get that amount sanctioned from SBP as part of commodity operation.

Senior SBP officials were reluctant to comment on this issue.

Sources close to SBP say the credit plan 1999-2000 envisages a tentative allocation of Rs 10 billion for commodity operation and sanctioning of the whole amount for lifting of lint cotton by TCP was out of question. The amount allocated for commodity operation is normally used by the banks on their own for financing purchase of cotton, wheat, fertilizer and pulses etc by the government.

Listed cost asked to report share holding

The Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has directed all the listed companies which have entered the central depositary system to report "the pattern of holding of shares "and "categories of shareholders " in a manner prescribed in form 34 and reminded the corporates that they have failed to do so.

An SECP handout issued on Monday said that the Central Depository Company (CDC) is shown as a shareholder instead of the actual shareholders and the beneficial owners.

Similarly, the notices of the meetings and the copies of the annual accounts are not circulated to all the members of the companies.

"The two lapses/omissions on the part of the listed companies which have been brought under the central depository system have been noticed", says the handout.

Footwear exhibition

The sixth two-day footwear exhibition — JUFT '99 — opened. The exhibition is being organized by the Pakistan Footwear Manufacturers Association (PFMA) in collaboration with the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) to promote export of footwear from Pakistan.

A good number of foreign buyers are expected to visit the exhibition. PFMA chairman Rehmat Ullah Khan recently visited the UK to popularize Pakistani products and to invite the British importers to the exhibition.

The footwear exports in the first 11 months during 1998-99 dropped to $30.988 million from $51.513 million in 1996-97. The export of leather footwear has suffered most as it came down by almost 50% during the same period to $20.823 million from $39.620 million.

Edible oil price moves up

The edible oil price jumped by Rs 20 per maund amid different rumours after the fixation of support price of cotton.

Traders maintained that the market was undergoing a bullish trend for the last two days due to the agreement reached between the growers, ginners and the textile mill owners.

They said that none of these parties was happy over the agreement and thus the future of oilseed extraction business in the country seemed to be bleak. This has pushed the edible oil prices up, traders said.