The four projects are: the Sindh and North West
Frontier Province (NWFP) structural adjustment credits, the community
infrastructure and services project credit for Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK)
and the Banking Sector Technical Assistance (TA) credit. These projects
underpin Pakistan's ongoing economic and structural reforms, which are
aimed at poverty reduction by engendering growth, improving governance
and human development, improving social service delivery and enhancing
social protection and employment opportunities.
According to an announcement made by the World Bank
local office on Wednesday, the government of Pakistan launched a
national reform programme in December 1999. Since then it has
implemented a number of reforms, including improvements in governance,
tighter fiscal controls and increased attention to social service
"The four operations we presented today support
the government's Poverty Reduction Strategy and its deep commitment to
governance reforms that we have seen progressing for well over two years
now," said John Wall, Country Director for Pakistan.
"It is at the provincial level where basic
service delivery happens and where poverty reduction programmes can have
their sharpest impact. Pakistan's provinces have suffered from poor
governance and a lack of fiscal capacity. Today's structural adjustment
operations help the government of Pakistan take its federal reform
commitment to this provincial level," he added.
The Sindh and NWFP Structural Adjustment credits,
$100 and $90 million respectively, support improvements in public
finances, governance and financial regulatory frameworks.
OPI FAILS TO MEET DRILLING TARGET
The government has warned a US-based petroleum
company that it would be liable to heavy liquidity damages unless it
completed the drilling of 19 exploration wells in Sindh province before
end of this year.
Informed sources told that petroleum ministry has
written to the Orient Petroleum Inc (OPI) that it was already in default
for not meeting last year's work target under the petroleum concession
These sources said that under the agreement OPI was
required to complete drilling of 19 wells before December 2002. These
included 12 exploratory wells in Mirpur Khas block and seven wells in
Khipro block, both in the Sindh province.
Of these, the company was obligated to drill four
exploratory wells last years i.e. before December 2001 and 15 before
President Gen Pervez Musharraf directed the ministry
of defence on Tuesday to get the private sector involved in defence arms
manufacturing and export.
He visited the Defence Export Promotion Organization
(DEPO) and its display centre established next to the General
Headquarters, Rawalpindi. The president particularly appreciated the
export activities of the private sector and said that it was in the
interest of the country and the armed forces that the private sector
should be more involved in defence manufacturing and export.
De-industrialization process in Sindh has picked up
considerably, affecting job opportunities in the urban areas, where an
official survey has found employment dropping by another 2.5 per cent
during nine months of the outgoing fiscal year.
CIRC TO DISPOSE OF RS14.3BN NPAS
The Corporate & Industrial Restructuring
Corporation would assume another 131 non-performing assets (NPAs) worth
Rs14.399 billion of three development finance institutions and banks in
the second phase of its operations.
This was stated by CIRC chairman Javed Hamid at a
briefing after the board meeting on Saturday. The meeting was presided
over Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz.
The CIRC will assume 54 NPAs worth Rs7.78 billion of
IDBP, 22 worth Rs1.278 billion of NBP and 55 worth Rs5.34 billion of HBL.
GOVT LIKELY TO BUY 50,000 TONS SUGAR FROM MILLS
The government is considering to buy around 50,000
tons sugar from the mills at market price to help them in reducing the
Well-placed sources told that the proposal is being
under consideration following the demand made by Pakistan Sugar Mills
Association (PSMA) seeking temporary bridge financing for sugar export.
According to the sources, the sugar will be exported
to Afghanistan under suppliers credit.
SINDH DRAWS MORE WATER THAN ITS SHARE: PUNJAB
Punjab on Wednesday accused Sindh of drawing more
water than its share from the national pool and remodelling its canals
without the Irsa certification.
In a letter to Indus River System Authority (Irsa),
Punjab claimed that Sindh has been drawing more water from river Indus
than its due share since the country came out of the water shortage
problem a few weeks ago.