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May 22 - 28, 2000

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

Chinese to arrange $30m for Saindak

The Chinese firm which developed Saindak project has agreed to take the project on lease, and has formed a consortium for arranging $30 million for operational cost.

Abdullah Yousaf, Secretary Petroleum and Natural Resources (P&NR) who had gone to China with Finance Minister, said on Thursday that the Chinese company which had developed the project, MCC, was not keen to be associated with the project in any capacity. He said after negotiations with the company, he managed to persuade them to take part in the leasing process of the project.

The secretary P&NR said that government feels that the company which developed the project has advantageous position to get it on lease. He said the company has decided to form a consortium for raising US$ 30 million. " I am very satisfied with the negotiations and the response of the MCC people was highly encouraging," he said.

The project was developed with the consideration of developing the backward area. However, the escalation in the project cost and the current low metal prices in international market has reduced the project's rate of return to a level that its production might just recoup its operating cost.

The ministry officials dealing with the project feel that the project can start its full production within six months if the funds are available.

China to explore Model Farms project

Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz said on Thursday that his visit to China would serve as catalyst to further cement the economic ties between the two countries.

In an exclusive interview on his return from China after attending Joint Economic Commission meeting, the minister said there is strong realization in China to further develop relations on economic front like other fronts between the two countries.

Both the countries, the minister viewed, had a range of products and services that complement each other which would provide an impetus to the cooperation and collaboration in various economic sectors.

Chinese delegation, he continued, would soon visit Pakistan to explore possibilities of developing Model Farms adding, this would pave the way for transfer of technology in this field.

12 sick units to be revived

The newly set-up committee on revival of sick industries has picked up a dozen sick units— eight of them in the textile sector—for immediate revival. It has also asked FPCCI—the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry—to examine cases of sick units on its own and then recommend to the committee.

The committee at its first meeting here on Wednesday gave a go -ahead to three staterun banks and two financial institutions to start revival talks with the sponsors of the selected sick units.

The chairman of the committee, Tariq Hameed told that the 12 sick units, the committee had zeroed in for immediate revival, are among those 114 that Shaukat Tarin committee had identified as immediately revivable. The Tarin committee, which consisted of heads of lead banks and financial institutions, had revived 64 sick industries and selected 114 more for immediate revival after a long scrutiny. "The sick units that we have picked up are the ones that were described immediately revivable by the lenders themselves. So their revival should not take much time," Hameed said.

Jamote sees agri growth at over 7pc

Federal Minister for Food, Agriculture and Livestock, Dr Shafqat Ali Shah Jamote has said that growth rate in agriculture sector is likely to surpass seven per cent this year.

He was talking to the Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan, Sadaaki Numata, who called on him at his office here on Thursday.

The minister informed the ambassador that Pakistan has great potential for agricultural growth and in the current year it has already achieved record production of cotton, wheat, rice, onion and potato. In addition to this, Pakistan was also growing a variety of fruits such as citrus, mangoes, apples, strawberries, mushrooms, lettuce and a variety of other crops, he added.

Canals to run full capacity from 20th

Agriculture Department Punjab has said that the canals in cotton sowing areas of the province will start running in full capacity by May 20.

The department advised the cotton growers to make immediate arrangements for sowing cotton in Multan, Bahawalpur and D.G Khan divisions.

A spokesman of the Agriculture Department Punjab in a statement here Tuesday said, due to shortage of water in Tarbela and Mangla Dams, the perennial and non-perennial canals in cotton area were flowing 30 to 40 per cent below their capacity. Now, more water has been released from these dams and all the canals in cotton areas will attain full capacity by May 20.

Funds awaited

The Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PRGMEA) is waiting for the release of Rs40 million from the Export Promotion Fund (EPF) for setting up an institute to train labour in the provincial capital.