Jan 22 -
95% revenue target achieved: Shaukat
The government has not yet decided to start Riba
(interest) free economy from July 1 as it was awaiting the final
recommendations of the three commissions set up earlier to decide the
issue, Minister for Finance Shaukat Aziz said on Thursday.
The finance minister said that three commissions
— one each in State Bank of Pakistan, Ministry of Finance and the
Ministry of Law — have not yet finalised their recommendations to
have everything in place by July 1.
He did not categorically support Minister for
Religious Affairs Dr Mahmood Ghazi that Pakistan's economy will start
functioning in accordance with Shariat from July 1st.
Mr Aziz did not say anything when asked how did he
see the prospects of foreign investment and the attitude of the
international donors and foreign commercial banks in case Pakistan
decided from July 1 to have a Riba free economy.
He said the commission of the State Bank was
working to change the banking system while the commission of the Law
Ministry was working to formulate recommendations to ensure that there
was no law against Shariat. The commission of the Finance Ministry, he
said, was looking at all the aspects that related to government's
The finance minister also spoke at length on
various issues including the proposed 1.5 billion dollar rescheduling
by the Paris Club, his visits to Devos for World Economic Forum and
Saudi Arabia for the meeting of Joint Ministerial Commission.
He said 95 per cent revenue targets had been met
during the first six months of the current financial year. "The
target of Rs 430 billion is very aggressive, ambitious and a stretched
goal", he said adding that even if the government finally met 90
per cent revenue targets at the end of the current fiscal, it will be
US should not ignore Pakistan, says Colin
Secretary of state-designate General Colin Powell
on Wednesday described as a "delicate process" American
efforts to strike a balance between US relations with Pakistan and
In a written opening statement during his
confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,
Gen Powell ascribed a peace-keeping potential to India, and said it
should be assisted in this endeavour, "while not neglecting our
friends in Pakistan".
"This," he said, "is a delicate
process in the midst of what by any accurate account would be labelled
as an arms race between these two countries."
Ministry opposes FBC transfer
The Agriculture Ministry has strongly opposed the
finance ministry's & State Bank of Pakistan's (SBP) move to
liquidate the Federal Bank for Cooperatives (FBC) saying this action
will hurt farm sector development as 81 per cent of small farmers
borrow money from this organization to buy inputs.
ICI to be demerged in three stages
The ICI Pakistan held a presentation at the KSE on
Wednesday, explaining to brokers and financial analysts, the complex
method through which the company proposes to hive off the PTA arm into
a separate company.
"The company's demerger is a three step
scheme. The first step is to separate the company's existing balance
sheet between PTA and non-PTA ICI in the ratio of 80:20," stated
Saad Hashemy, analyst, following the synthetic sector at brokerage
Invest Capital and Securities (Pvt) Limited.
He said the second step would be to reduce the
existing share capital by 50 per cent so as to wash off the existing
losses from the balance sheet.
The third step was the purchase of 25 per cent
shares of PTA by non-PTA ICI.
Farm export zone may be set up
Agriculture Export Processing Zone (AEPZ) and
Agriculture Export Terminal (AET) would soon be set-up in Karachi,
Sindh Agriculture Minister, Hasan Ali Chaniho, said on Thursday.
The decision to this effect was taken at a meeting
of Sindh Facilities Board, held under the chairmanship of the
According to preliminary details, the AEPZ would be
set-up on an area of 150 acres behind the new Sabzi Mandi at Super
Highway while the AET at Terminal No 3 of Karachi Airport.
The lop-sided deep sea fishing policy is inflicting
losses in millions of dollars to the country as fishing potential
beyond territorial waters upto 35 miles remains almost un-exploited.
The existing deep sea fishing policy of 1995, has
reserved fishing rights between 12 to 35 miles for traditional small
scale fishermen on a considered opinion that in due course they will
enhance their capabilities of harvesting through up-gradation of their
crafts and skill.
Pakistan to join fish organization
Pakistan has decided to join the Inter-
governmental Organization for Marketing Information and Technical
Advisory Services for Fishery Products in the Asian and Pacific Region
(INFOFISH) to exploit its potential in the seafood products.
The membership fee of this 14 member-countries
organization, set up in 1985, is $15,000 per annum.
UK envoy meets traders
The UK High Commissioner Hilary Synnot has said
that the British investors are keen to invest in the fields of IT, oil
and gas and agricultural sector, as well industrial joint ventures
between both the countries for strengthening economic partnership.
He made these remarks during a meeting with the
three-man team of Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry on
PTCL, Alcatel sign MoU
The Pakistan Telecommunication Company limited (PTCL)
signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with M/s Alcatel for quick
the availability of hardware and software solutions, specially for the
primary rate access for promotion of information technology and
internet in the country.