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Sep 03 - 09 , 2001

Larger phutti arrivals trigger price fall

Cotton prices on Wednesday showed modest decline on selling by ginners triggered by reports of larger arrivals of phutti into the ginneries of the lower Sindh cotton belt.

Although the fall in prices of phutti was identical, signals from the Punjab cotton belt were bearish owing perhaps to quality factors and the consequent lowering of prices by ginners from there.

Floor brokers said although most of the leading Punjab ginners are holding on to their unsold stocks because of lower bids by the spinners, indications are that they may not be in a position to hold on for longer period because of steady arrivals of phutti.

The further cut of Rs.25.00 per maund in official spot rates has sent shock waves among the ginners who could not precisely decide how to react to the changing market scenario guided largely by demand and supply factors.

"The prevailing weather conditions are ideal for a bumper crop as they could add significantly to its growth potential leading to larger production", local ginners claim. But some others say the next two to three weeks could be crucial for the new crop and if all goes well during this period, the country could be on the threshold of another bumper crop in a row.

Market sources said it is too early to predict about the future price direction of the local lint, indications are that the global production glut may keep prices depressed slightly below the current levels. "And if growers having a little holding capacity resort to panic selling owing to ginners reluctance to pay them competitive rates then there could be further slashing in prices", they add.

Meanwhile, ginners of Rahimyar Khan, the recently declared model for contamination-free lint, met on Wednesday to chalk out a joint strategy to produce high quality lint, according to local brokerage house.

Facility to overhaul steam turbine

The country's first facility to overhaul, repair and service the speed controlling device internal combustion engine or steam turbine, built at a cost of Rs30 million on Raiwind Road was inaugurated on Tuesday.

The facility set up by Wartsila Pakistan with technical aid from Woodward Governors Japan would offer technical facilities to the country's captive power plants (CPPs), independent power plants (IPPs), sugar and shipping industries and the Pakistan Railways. Wartsila imports all its equipment from Woodward Japan which is an American concern, and is the largest manufacturer of governors or speed controlling devices.

POF starts making ammunition for Al-Khalid

In yet another major breakthrough, the Pakistan Ordnance Factories (POF), Wah, has started manufacturing all types of ammunition for the Pakistan-built mainfield battle tank Al-Khalid and Ukrainian-manufactured T-80 UD tanks.

The ammunition being manufactured at POF, Wah, includes 100mm, 105mm and 125mm guns fitted on these tanks.

Highly-placed sources told that Pakistan has also started manufacturing the shells of T-80UD Ukrainian tanks.

Pakistan has about 800 Ukrainian tanks, the ammunition for which is being provided by the USA and some European countries.

Allotment policy for Sialkot EPZ

The Punjab Small Industries Corporation (PSIC) is expected to finalize its policy to allot 873 industrial plots at the Sialkot Export Processing Zone at a meeting with the officials of the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry here on September 3.

The 238-acre Sialkot EPZ has been completed by the PSIC at a cost of Rs185 million.

Normally, the PSIC allots the plots at its industrial estates to applicant through balloting. However, it has asked the SCCI to forward its proposals for devising a new allotment policy for the EPZ in view of the demands from businessmen to allocate separate areas at the zone to different industries. Moreover, those who have applied for more than one plot are demanding that they be allotted adjacent plots.

CIRC sells another sick unit

The Corporate & Industrial Restructuring Corporation (CIRC) sold another sick unit Goreeja Steel Mills for Rs16.5 million on Wednesday.

The sale would be approved by the CIRC directors in their next meeting. The CIRC has so far sold 16 units out of 25 put up for auction by it since May, Punjab finance minister and CIRC chairman Tariq Hamid told reporters.

Govt plans to decentralize seed industry

The government is considering to decentralize public sector seed industry to encourage multinational companies to start production of hybrid and synthetic seeds.

The government is planning to enhance existing capacity of public sector seed agencies and lay emphasis on production and use of hybrid seed to cope with needs of growers.

According to official sources efforts will be made to induct NGOs and community based farmers associations along with private seed companies for production of breeders, foundation, basic and certified seeds.

The proposal to involved private sector in promoting seed marketing in the provincial seed industry is also under consideration, sources added.

Rs90m Sialkot industrial zone being planned

Provincial government is actively considering for establishing a Sialkot industrial zone for tanneries with a cost of Rs90 million. Official sources told APP on Saturday the proposed Sialkot industrial zone would be developed on 300 acres of land and work on the project would be carried out in near future.

As many as 248 tanneries of different sizes are functioning in and around the Sialkot, out of which nine large, 79 medium and 160 small tanneries are successfully functioning in the city.