Business articles

Gold rises towards $1,350 per ounce as dollar languishes

Gold rises towards $1,350 per ounce as dollar languishes

LONDON: Gold prices rose again, touching $1,350 an ounce in Europe, and silver touched a new 30-year high on Monday. It came amid rumors that the United States will shortly introduce further monetary easing.
Spot gold was bid at $1,348.70 an ounce at 1122 GMT, against $1,343.25 late in New York on Friday. US gold futures for December delivery rose $4.50 an ounce to $1,349.80. Spot gold is still within sight of last week’s record $1,364.60.
The dollar slipped on Monday

Oil gains fresh fillip from weak dollar

LONDON: Oil rose for a second straight session on Monday, boosted by the dollar’s continuing fall against a range of currencies, which outweighed news that China had tightened its monetary policy. Prices touched a five-month intra-day high of $84.43 last week.
Weakness in the greenback boosts the dollar value of oil, which is usually traded in the US currency.
Oil was “in a kind of win-win situation”, where weak economic data supported prices by increasing expectations, but

KSE crawls up 62 points

KARACHI: The Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) exhibited a mixed performance on Monday and was pushed despite the extremely low turnover and gained 62 points at the closing.
The pressing lack of any new information on the status of margin trading system (MTS), gloomy financial prognosis, the dire lack of security, and the continuing row between the judiciary and the government all played a role in depressing the market. According to an unofficial update, the proposed MTS system

Banks use deceptive techniques to recover defaults

LAHORE: Commercial banks are deceiving its credit card debtors through different means, banks’ customers told Pakistan Today on Saturday.
They said, bank officials use various means to deceive the defaulters. They would make a phone call to defaulters of credit cards, and ask them to pay the minimum amount, as the bank had decided to offer them settlement, in which case the customers would only need to pay 50 percent or even less of the total amount. The banker would ask

Groundbreaking for WAPDA offices shortly

LAHORE: The groundbreaking of WAPDA offices and colonies of Diamer Basha dam is expected next month. The Federal government has already released and handed over an initial sum of Rs 700 million to the deputy commissioner of Diamer for acquisition of land in Gilgit-Baltistan.
This was revealed after a meeting between Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister, Syed Mehdi Shah and WAPDA Chairman, Shakil Durrani, following the latter’s visit to the site of Diamer-Basha dam project.

PSM hires five officers on high salaries to help counter crises

KARACHI: The new administration of the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) has hired five high salaried officers on contract basis amid the entity’s severe financial crunch.
The administration has hired Noor A Memon as the administration director, Khursheed Abbas as the security general manager, Brig (Retd) Rao Wahab as the director in administration, Razzaq Baloch as the deputy general manager in administration and also hired a person as the financial adviser.
Plagued by

Pakistan’s sweet tooth continues to hurt

ISLAMABAD: Consumers will have to brace for another year of inflation in sugar prices, as the latest official estimates project a shortfall of 1.3 million tons in the domestic sugar output during the current season of 2010-11.
The decline in this year’s sugarcane production is expected to raise prices on the domestic market. If no timely measures are adopted, then the price of sugar is expected to exceed Rs 75 per kilogram during the crushing season, official sources indicated.

PSM’s desperate bid to keep head above water

KARACHI: The Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) has decided to sell off its land to overcome its overwhelming financial compulsions with the National Bank of Pakistan (NBP)-led consortium of banks unlikely to lend it Rs seven billion, part of the Rs 25 billion bailout package announced by the government to rescue the cash-stripped entity.
The PSM board in its meeting held on October 7 decided to sell around 1,500 to 2,000 acres to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) or Qatar.
“The PSM

Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor could prove a disaster for Pakistan

KARACHI: India is working on a mega industrial project that could corner Pakistan in its regional trade and investment in the coming years.
The project called Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) requires $200 billion worth of investment, and where as India is investing $13.4 billion from its own pocket, the rest is funded from loans and investment worth $184 billion by 27 leading countries in the world.
Details gathered by Pakistan Today revealed that the Delhi-Mumbai

Petroleum Ministry says no gas for new fertiliser plants

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Petroleum has flatly refused the allocation of further gas for any new fertiliser plants, saying under present circumstance there was no possibility to allocate any fresh gas quota for any newly installed fertiliser plant in the next five years.
According to official sources this reply was made by the petroleum ministry to an official request forwarded by the Ministry of Industries, which had sought additional gas quota for the development of a new 0.5

Free seeds, fertilisers for Sindh’s flood-hit growers

KARACHI: The crop cultivators of Sindh will be granted much needed aid in the form of free seeds and fertiliser to facilitate them in crop growth, particularly wheat, for the upcoming Rabi season, sources in the provincial Agriculture Department told Pakistan Today.
A district level committee including representatives of the growers’ association and local leaders will be established to identify and verify deserving growers.
Each farmer, both in the pacca and kachcha area

Economic uplift imperative to Pakistan’s well-being: LCCI President

On a solemn note, the newly elected President of Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Shahzad Ali Malik, voiced his fears that the economy and the nation as a whole are passing through a particularly difficult stage in the troubled history of Pakistan. Prudent policy decision and implementation on part of the government and the active participation of the private sector were essentially intrinsic to any sustainable solution to Pakistan’s tribulations.

Pilot project of 20 telecentres to be launched this month

KARACHI: The Universal Service Fund (USF) has devised a pilot project of 20 telecentres that would be launched this month across the country on an experimental basis after the USF’s budget is approved in its board meeting.
Each province will have four equally distributed telecentres, and after their successful piloting, the approved model would be replicated in some 400 to 500 telecentres at the next level of this grand project.
“One telecentre will cost around Rs 0.1

Standing Committee on Commerce seeks detail on sugar tenders

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly Standing Committee on Commerce has sought a detailed report on sugar tenders floated and finalized by the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) in its next meeting on October 14.
According to official sources, TCP had imported 0.5 million tons of sugar till October 4 and has 0.25 million tons of stocks in hand. It has opened a Letter of Credit (LC) for the import of 100,000 tons, while contract is awarded for the import of 120,000 tons.

Investigations into Rs 60b scam at ATT suspended

PESHAWAR: The investigations into scandal of Rs 60 billion corruption in Afghan Transit Trade has been suspended. The investigations has been stopped after taking action against eight containers out of total 387.
As per details, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) had started the investigations of Rs 60 billion scandal which had come to open in 2008.
The investigations revealed that the containers dispatched to Afghanistan in the guise of Afghan transit trade were being off

Shipping at Port Qasim in danger as Dutch firm warns of suspension

KARACHI: Shipping activity at the country’s second largest seaport, Port Qasim, is going to stumble in the next couple of days, Pakistan Today reliably learnt Saturday.
Fears of a fresh setback arose after the funds-starved Port Qasim Authority’s (PQA) failed to make any payment to the international tugging and piloting firms since July this year.
However, while talking to Pakistan Today, Chairman of PQA Vice Admiral (Retd), Muhammad Shafi entirely denied the claim and said

Former WAPDA Chairman supports construction of Kalabagh dam

LAHORE: Former Chairman WAPDA, Shamsul Mulk has said that Kalabagh Dam is a national issue and needs attention, denying the perception that it is just the issue of Punjab.
Shamsul Mulk said that his province has suffered the most, due to delay in construction of Kalabagh Dam, as recent floods that hit Nowshera resulted in the water level to reach 961 feet. This could have been avoided if Kalabagh dam had been built, as it would have kept the water level at only 880 feet.