July 05 - 11, 2004

 

2ND INTERNATIONAL HRD CONGRESS IN ISLAMABAD IN OCTOBER 2004

After a tremendous success of the 1st International HRD Congress 2003, the Human Resource Development Network (HRDN) is organizing the 2nd International HRD Congress on October 1-2, 2004 in Islamabad.
Mr. Ozair A. Hanafi, Secretary-General, HRD Congress 2004 announced in Islamabad at a press conference held recently. Also present on the occasion were Mr. Azhar Saeed, National Coordinator HRHN, Ms. Afshan Tehseen and Ms. Grace T. Shaikh, Board Members, HRDN.
The theme of the Congress is "Attacking Poverty through Public Partnerships." A cross-section of

 

 

professionals engaged in human resource development, both from here and abroad, are expected to attend the two-day congress and deliberate and explore the various myths and realities of public and private sector partnerships for the alleviation of poverty in Pakistan.

Elaborating on the goals and objectives of the congress, Mr. Ozair Hanafi said, "The purpose of the 2nd International HRD Congress is to help key stakeholders understand the range of possibilities between public and private partnerships and share such practices from around the world, thus developing innovative tripartite partnerships between government, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and the private sector. We are quite positive the experiences and successes of the 1st International Congress 2003 will auger well in making this year's event a bigger success in achieving its primary goals and objectives."

ARIF HABIB SECURITIES HAVE ANNOUNCED HEFTY DIVIDEND

The Board of Directors of Arif Habib Securities has decided to announce interim dividend of 150% cash and 150% bonus. The announcement has followed a 100% cash dividend and 33.33% bonus last year (year ended June 03). The Board decided to take a lead and made the announcement for its shareholders prior to the close of the current financial year. Thus its shareholders do not have to wait in suspense and can participate in the good fortunes of the Company without delay.

Listed in 2001 Arif Habib Securities is the flagship company of the Arif Habib Financial Services Group. The company ranked 6th and 8th amongst the recipients of the 'Top 25 Companies Awards' by Karachi Stock Exchange, in the first two years of awards since its listing.

Arif Habib Securities is also the main sponsor of Arif Habib Investments, one of the leading fund management companies of the country, managing over Rs. 7.5 billion. This company has brought the benefits of the capital market to retail investors at their doorsteps.

 

 

SSGC SIGNS SYNDICATE FINANCE AGREEMENT

Sui Southern Gas Company Ltd. (SSGC) entered into a long term finance facility of Rs.3,000,000,000 (Pak Rupees three billion only) with a syndicate of banks comprising National Bank of Pakistan, Habib Bank Limited, Muslim Commercial Bank, United Bank Limited and Standard Chartered Bank.

The agreement was signed by Mr. Munawar B. Ahmad, Managing Director, SSGC and representatives of the participating banks here at SSGC's head office on 28th June 2004.

The financing will be utilized for SSGC's capital expenditure and working capital requirements envisaged in the five years system expansion plan.

This landmark transaction essentially represents one of the first such financing in Pakistan within the gas sector which is based on strong cash flow structure and will go a long way in developing gas infrastructure required for sustained economic growth, disclosed by SSGC's press release.

The financial sector also underpins the importance of such a financial transaction in the gas sector and underlines that it will provide impetus to the overall economic growth of Pakistan.

D-8 COUNTRIES MEET TO DISCUSS DRAFT PTA

The second meeting of the D-8 High Level Expert Group on trade and trade related matters started in Islamabad and would last for two days. Mr. Tariq Osman Hyder, Additional Foreign Secretary and D-8 Commissioner for Pakistan chaired the inaugural session. Mr. Shahid Bashir, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and other officials participated in the meeting.

D-8 countries include Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, Nigeria, Malaysia, Turkey, Iran and Indonesia. The basic objective of the meeting is to discuss the mechanisms of Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) among the member countries. After the two days deliberations, the draft PTA will be finalized among the D-8 countries. The draft on PTA is primarily designed to serve as a framework for negotiations, which will subsequently be undertaken. It was stated that enhancing economic cooperation was the primary motive behind the creation of this group. Mr. Hyder in his inaugural address underlined that Pakistan attached great importance to the role that D-8 could play in building strong linkages among the economies of eight large members of the OIC. He said that the enhanced trade and economic cooperation was possibly the only way to meaningfully strengthen our cooperative endeavors.

PAKISTAN, SINGAPORE TO NEGOTIATE FTA

A meeting was held between Federal Minister for Commerce, Mr. Humayun Akhtar Khan and Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr. Goh Chok Tong who was leading a seven-member delegation in Islamabad.

Both the sides emphasized on the efforts for concrete measures to ensure greater trade and economic cooperation between the two countries. Commerce Minister briefed Mr. Tong about economic liberalization of the country. He said that Pakistan had a totally transparent trade regime and hence, a great attraction for investors. The Commerce Minister said that oil and gas, telecommunication, housing, agriculture and textile were the areas of potential for foreign investment.

Mr. Humayun proposed Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Singapore, which he said, was in the best interest of both the countries. In response to this, Mr. Tong expressed his keenness on negotiating FTA with Pakistan. He further said that once a momentum is built, it must be kept up by facilitating the investors. The Prime Minister also appreciated economic reforms undertaken by the Government of Pakistan. Mr. Tong lauded the efforts of Pakistan in fighting terrorism.

Both the sides agreed that it was vital to explore economic and commercial opportunities by the business community of both the countries.

EMIRATES OPENS 24HRS RESERVATION & TICKETING OFFICE AT KARACHI AIRPORT

Emirates, a world leader in airline luxury since its foundation in 1985, has become the first international carrier to open a 24-hour ticketing and reservation office at the Jinnah International Airport, Karachi.

The Emirates Reservation & Ticketing Office, which is located on Level 2 in the International Departure Area, was inaugurated by the Deputy Director General of the Civil Aviation Authority, Air Vice Marshall Abid Rao.

 

 

The 24/7 ticketing & reservation services that are now offered by Emirates are expected to further increase traveller preference for the airline. Customers, who previously had to travel to the city office for reservations and ticketing, now have the choice of the Emirates Airport office to avail themselves of these services. This also offers passengers living in Airport's vicinity a one-stop solution for all their travelling needs.

While talking to the guests informally at the inauguration ceremony, Air Vice Marshall Abid Rao, said "Emirates has been one of the major players in the aviation industry since it commenced flights to Pakistan in 1885. I congratulate Emirates on this initiative and for its continued support of the Pakistani traveller."

While thanking the Deputy Director General of the Civil Aviation Authority Emirates' Vice President Pakistan Adnan Kazim, said; "Emirates is grateful to Pakistan's Aviation and Airport Authorities for their cooperation and support, without which this extension of Emirates service to Pakistani travellers would not have been possible."

At the conclusion of the ceremony, Emirates Pakistan's Sales and Marketing Officer, Faraz Hussain, announced that a similar Emirates' Reservation and Ticketing Office would open at Islamabad International Airport in near future.

INTEL DELIVERS BREAKTHROUGH PC TECHNOLOGIES

In one of the most significant PC platform changes in a decade, Intel Corporation recently announced products that usher in a range of audio, video and other capabilities previously found only on specialty PCs in addition to making the PC experience more entertaining and productive, these technologies pave the way for such emerging capabilities as High Definition (HD) video, 7.1 surround sound and robust file protection for office and home users.

These technoloies are helping create a new kind of PC, an all-in-one "hi-fi" device with high-definition video, high-fidelity sound and wireless connectivity, accorfing to Louis Burns, vice president and general manager, Intel Desktop platforms Group.