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!title7.jpg (46572 bytes)The gradual deregulation of POL products trade has opened new vistas for investment. The fast changing market scenario and new entrants are fueling competition. While the intense competition is expected to shrink margin, the efforts will be to grab market share from competitors. The giants of yesterday are losing market share to companies offering better services and new entrants are trying to establish their credentials. The key areas which offer investment opportunities are: white oil pipeline project, POL storage facilities, revamping and addition of new outlets.

Record accumulated losses suffered by state-owned Pakistan National Shipping Corporation during 1999-2000 has eroded the paid-up capital to a dangerously low level is posing serious questions about its very survival. A fleet which comprises vessels the majority of which have long passed their productive lives and the mandatory implementation of the ISM Code in July next poses additional problems for the financially troubled Corporation.

After having failed in numerous earlier attempts to bring Bara Markets into some sort of tax net, the Central Board of Revenue (CBR) has proposed a new customs amnesty scheme for Bara traders with 15 per cent custom duty on every item. Shamim A. Rizvi reports from Islamabad.