Dec 03 - 09, 2001
Kharrazi links peace to broad-based govt
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi on Thursday
said that Islamic Republic of Iran was averse to the idea of
deployment of foreign troops in Afghanistan, saying "it could
"We have rejected the idea of deploying
foreign troops in Afghanistan because of its highly sensitive
nature," said Mr Kharrazi in an interview. Mr Kharrazi had
arrived on a two-day official visit.
The question posed to Mr Kharrazi was that whether
Iran was apprehensive about the presence of the United States troops
close to its borders.
The Iranian minister, who had already met Foreign
Minister Abdul Sattar, said that regional situation was an important
item on the agenda of their talks. Mr Kharrazi is meeting President
Gen Pervez Musharraf on Friday.
Commenting on the United Nations initiative for the
establishment of a broad-based government in Kabul, the Iranian
minister said: "I believe after so many years of civil war, it is
time for reconciliation and establishment of a broad-based
It was a goal of the United Nations and a goal of
Islamic Republic of Iran. Peace and tranquillity could return to
Afghanistan only through the establishment of a broad-based
government, he emphasized.
Mr Kharrazi saw no divergence between the views of
Pakistan and Iran over the idea of setting up a broad-based government
in Kabul. In reply to a direct question to the effect, he said:
"I think everybody is looking forward for a stable government in
He admitted that there had been differences between
Iran and Pakistan over the question of supporting the Taliban.
"We had been saying that it could not be a lasting policy, and
sooner or later you have to change your policy. "Now it is quite
understandable that Pakistan has changed its policy, and Iran and
Pakistan can work together for a stable government in
Islamabad to prepare tax system for Kabul
Pakistan would formulate taxation system for
Afghanistan when a new broad-based government is installed in Kabul.
Under the scheme, the Pakistani taxation
authorities will provide technical assistance as well as a plan for an
effective taxation establishment to be put in place in Kabul, a highly
informed source told on Thursday.
The project has been initiated following the
decision of the US-led coalition to start reconstruction of the
war-ravaged country. Some taxation officials of Pakistan, along with
other countries officials, are already working in the East Timor under
the aegis of the United Nations.
Rs35bn WAPDA rescue package likely
The federal government is expected to approve a
Rs35 billion rescue package for WAPDA on Thursday to prepare its 12
corporate companies for privatization, official sources told.
A high-level meeting, to be presided over by
President Gen Pervez Musharraf, would be given a comprehensive
presentation on the performance of WAPDA's military management and
financial and regulatory problems faced by the utility, these sources
KESC selloff plan finalized
The federal government on Thursday finalized a plan
for restructuring of Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) with a
target to complete its privatization by Dec 31, 2002.
The plan that envisaged issuance of bonds and
involvement of Asian Development Bank (ADB) as equity shareholder to
the extent of about seven per cent was finalized at a meeting presided
over by Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz.
UK ready to play role in Kashmir, says Straw
Britain has again called for resumption of a
dialogue between two South Asian neighbours for solution of Kashmir
dispute and expressed its readiness for a role if acceptable to them.
"The crucial point is that, in the real world,
the dispute can be resolved only by bilateral negotiations between
India and Pakistan. That is what we want to happen," British
Foreign Secretary Jack Straw told the House of Commons during the
question-hour session on Tuesday.
Japan to provide Rs5.3m for DPs
The Japan government will provide Rs5.3 million
assistance for child health-care and provision of clean drinking water
to Afghan refugees, living in the NWFP and Balochistan.
The agreement was signed by the Japan Ambassador,
Sadaaki Numata, and President of Family Planning Association of
Pakistan (FPAP), a non-governmental organization, Syed Munir Hussain
at a local hotel on Sunday.
10 EoIs received for 49pc ABL shares
The Privatization Commission has received 10
Expressions of Interest (EoIs) for the disinvestment of remaining 49
per cent shares in the Allied Bank of Pakistan (ABL), but the
authorities concerned are reluctant to give the names and other
details of the interested parties.
EU to restore insurance cover
Pakistan has been assured by the Belgian Prime
Minister Guy Verhofstadt of increased trade and economic cooperation
including insurance cover for western investors to invest in the
Official sources said that during the meeting
between the Belgian prime minister and the ministers for finance,
trade and Kashmir Affairs on Saturday issues relating to better trade
and economic ties were discussed.
KPT chief assures cut in port charges
Karachi Port Trust (KPT) chairman Rear Admiral
Ahmed Hayat on Thursday promised to bring down port charges by making
the operations efficient and cost effective.
In a meeting with the delegation of Pakistan
Bedwear Exporters Association (PBEA), led by its chairman Shabir
Ahmed, the KPT chief said that at present the port was over burdened
with labour and other overheads which needed to be resolve.