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Jun 05 - Jun 11, 2000

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

Pakistan to export 1 million ton wheat

The government in an unprecedented move here on Tuesday announced to export one million tons of wheat, worth about $350 minion, from its two million surplus production during fiscal year 2000-2001.

Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe have already expressed their interest to buy the commodity from Pakistam following the reports of bumper crop in the country.

This was disclosed by Federal Agriculture Minister Dr Shafqat Ali Shah Jamote at a press conference in his office here on Tuesday. The minister said: "We have produced 22 million tons of wheat against the target of 20 million tons in 1999-2000. Thus, we have decided to export one million tons."

Dr Jamote said priority would be given to the wheat deficient country of Afghanistan. He added that 600,000 tons would be exported to Afghanistan and 400,000 tons to some other countries.

Unlike the past wheat export would be on government-togovernment basis, Jamote said. He added that 40,000 to 50,000 tons would be dispatched to Afghanistan every month.

Answering a question, Jamote said: "We will sell the commodity in the international market, and would make it sure that our good quality wheat gets competitive price."

The minister said so far the federal government had procured 6.5 million tons against a target of 7 million tons.

The federal and provincial agencies had been directed to purchase the commodity from the growers without caring about their targets.

He admitted that the federal and provincial governments were facing serious shortage of storage and jute bags as "no body was expecting such an unprecedented bumper crop."

IFC, ABN Amro to create $100m facility

ABN Amro Bank is likely to start confirming letters of credit of six banks including those of itself from July under a $100 million Pakistan trade enhancement facility.

The country manager of ABN Amro in Pakistan Muhammad Aurangzeb told that the facility is being created jointly by ABN Amro Bank and International Finance Corporation.

IFC Board of Directors has already approved the creation of trade enhancement facility — IFC's first investment in Pakistan in past two years, he added.

Replying to a question Aurangzeb explained that under the said facility IFC would guarantee 50 per cent of the exposure taken by ABN Amro Bank on selected Pakistani banks.

The banks whose LCs would be confirmed under this arrangement include (i) ABN Amro (ii) Habib Bank Ltd. (iii) Muslim Commercial Bank (iv) Askari Bank (v) Soneri Bank and (vi) Bank AL Habib.

In case an LC of any of these banks goes into default ABN Amro and IFC would jointly compensate the exposure up to $100 million.

Orders placed for import of sugar worth $80m: Jamote

Pakistan has placed orders for the import of 1,38,000 tons of sugar worth $80m after a drastic fall in the sugarcane production by 17% this year.

The country will be required to import total 0.4m tons of sugar during the year 2000 to meet its domestic requirements.

This was disclosed by agriculture minister Dr Shafqat Ali Shah Jamote on Wednesday who briefed newsmen about the details which he along with the federal secretary Dr Zafar Altaf gave to a joint meeting of the cabinet and National Security Council, chaired by the chief executive General Pervez Musharraf.

Ironically, Pakistan had exported 0.6 million tons of sugar last year to India worth $ 600 million. He said, however, the government would not import the sugar from India to meet its demands.

Deal signed

Muslim Commercial Bank and Faysal Bank Ltd signed an agreement for the sale and purchase of MCB Rupee Traveller Cheque at all 11 Faysal Bank branches in Pakistan. Faysal Bank is the third foreign bank after ABN Amro and Gulf Commercial Bank to sign such an agreement with MCB, says a press release.

Oil, gas moot

Pakistan Oil & Gas Conference 2000 will be held in Islamabad on Oct 8-10 to provide an independent forum for free and frank discussions on the policies regarding oil & gas sector. It aims at attracting international and local investors.

Govt may cut dryport charges (Trade)

The federal government is expected to cut by half the dryport charges for importers and exporters of Punjab, and remove the procedural difficulties in obtaining transportation pass for import goods for upcountry from Karachi port.

The Customs department had proposed to do away with the dryport charges totally, but the budget-makers are reported to have decided cutting these charges by half.

Dual facility enjoyed

The government is considering to do away with the dual facility to exporters in the form of high duty drawback rates and reduced import duty/taxes on raw materials, equipments and machinery.

The budget 2000-2001 may do away with anomalies relating to availability of tariff/tax based facilities to different export sectors. The proposed changes may include steps for eliminating the tariff and tax related distortions on revenue schedules.


Export Promotion Bureau through Pakistani Consulate General in Hong Kong, has received tenders of Information Technology Services for Pakistani exporters. Wanchei Tower Harbour Road Wanchei Hong Kong offered these tenders for Pakistani exporters. The closing date of the tender is June 28, 2000.