The State Bank on Thursday injected roughly Rs 24 billion for two weeks
to one month in a liquidity-starved interbank market.
SBP said it bought Rs 4.785 billion worth of two-week treasury bills at
7 per cent and Rs 19.2 billion worth of one-month bills at 6.75 per cent.
SBP bought the bills at a two-way open market operation. Banks had
offered Rs 16.285 billion worth of TBs for sale out of which SBP purchased TBs worth Rs
23.985 billion and rejected the rest. SBP did not sell any T-bills though the two-way OMO
had attracted Rs 2.4 billion worth of bids as well.
$50m for payphone
The Telecard has arranged 50 million dollar suppliers' credit for its
Wireless Local Loop (WLL) payphone project, a company official said. The company has
signed an agreement with Motorola Corporation of the United States, which will provide
credit for five years and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) equipments.
Muslim Commercial and Allied Bank have cut their internal lending and
borrowing rates. This will drive their branches to lend more to the customers instead of
placing surplus funds with their respective treasuries.
Two other major banks i.e. National Bank and United Bank are expected
to make similar move before the month-end. The third one i.e. Habib Bank has a system of
adjusting internal lending and borrowing rates every month: as such its current rates at
11 and 11.25 per cent do not need an immediate revision.
Centre releases Rs656m to NWFP
The federal government has released Rs 656 million to the NWFP
government as its share from the net profits through the earnings from hydel power,
official sources said.
The release of provincial share from this source comes after a gap of
over three months. Last time the provincial government received its share from this source
was the first week of October.
SBP eases curb on dividend remittances
The State Bank on Tuesday allowed remittance of dividend to
non-resident shareholders and eased off some other restrictions on foreign exchange
outflow imposed in 1998.
A SBP circular (FE no 1) issued to banks said, remittance of dividend
to non-resident shareholders had been allowed but such remittance would require
documentation with the State Bank.
The circular said remittance on account of principal and interest on
the basis of repayment schedules registered with SBP had also been allowed with immediate
But it said, the permission was meant for only private sector excluding
those organisations that are owned 51% or more by the government. The circular said,
remittances on accoumt of royalty and technical fee admissible under foreign exchange
rules are also allowed.
SBP said remittance of instalments of principal and interest of foreign
currency loans by Pakistani firms and companies are also permitted. But the circular made
it clear that remittances of this nature would be made on the basis of repayment schedules
registered with SBP. It said remittance of principal amd interest on account of foreign
currency loans obtained by foreign controlled companies for working capital requirements
were also allowed.
SBP has also restored the facility of imports without opening of
letters of credit of those commodities that are not subject to any cash margin
requirements. This facility was withdrawn in July '98. Currently industrial raw materials;
machinery and its components and about a dozen essential items including wheat and
petroleum products enjoy exemption from cash margin requirements.
China agrees to reschedule Pakistan loans
China on Monday agreed to reschedule its loans to Pakistan which were
due up to Dec 1999.
Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji made this decision at the formal talks with
Chief Executive Gen Pervez Musharraf at the Great Hall.
The Chief Executive appreciated the "spontaneous decision" of
Chinese Premier to postpone these loans. These loans would be rescheduled for payment
between 2010 and 2019, official said.
Pakistan debt rescheduled by Belgium
Belgium consolidated and rescheduled Pakistan's $ 6.6 million debt
(257.550 million Belgian franc) for over 10 years.
An agreement in this regard was signed between the two governments by
Igor Haustrate on behalf of Belgium and Javed Akram, Secretary, Economic Affairs Division,
on behalf of Pakistan.
Under the pact, debt servicing of BF 257.550 minion, due during the
period from July 1,1998, to Dec 31, 2000, on loans contracted up to Sept 30,1997, has been
consolidated and rescheduled for repayment in 20 semi-annual instalments, commencing from
July 1, 2010.
Shaukat asks US team for investment
The four-member US Senate delegation held a detailed meeting with
Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz and was told that there existed a better environment in
Pakistan for foreign investment.
According to informed sources, the finance minister urged the
delegation, led by minority leader Senator Tom Daschle, to help attract foreign
investment, specially that of the United States, as the law and order situation had
greatly improved in the country.
He said the factor of foreign investment in achieving a good GDP growth
was very important.
NBP likely to declare profit
The country's premier financial institution, National Bank of Pakistan,
is expected to declare a record gross profit in the range of Rs 6 billion, which is the
highest-ever by a corporate entity in the country, as the bank's deposits soared to Rs 295
billion by end-December 1999.
China has assured to make substantial investment in Pakistan, says the
minister for finance Shaukat Aziz.
Shaukat who accompanied the Chief Executive to China told that China
had assured to provide all kinds of financial and technical assistance to Pakistan. 'One
of the major things is that the Chinese are coming in a big way to invest in Pakistan', he