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Pakistan Daily Economy Update - 15 March

IM Insights
By IM Insights
3 months ago
Pakistan Daily Economy Update - 15 March

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  1. March 15 , 2019 KCCI - eBulletin PM opens Pakistan Online Visa System PM Imran Khan has inaugurated Pakistan Online VisaSystem, under which online visa facility would be provided to citizens of 175countries. The PM said business visas facility under these categories will be provided within 7-10 days. The online visa facility will include the categories of tourism, business, work and student visa, diplomat and journalist visa, family visit, cultural visits and participation in conferences and seminars. Initially citizens of five countries including UK, Turkey, Malaysia, the UAE and China will be granted online visas in the pilot project. Foreign nationals of Indian origin will also be allowed to avail the facility of visa on arrival for religious tourism and that average visa fee has been reduced from 22 to 65%. Nationals of UAE, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain among others will be given multiple visas. The Nation. Malaysian CG for reviewing tariff increase on air conditioners Counsel General of Malaysia, Khairul Nazam Abd Rahman, while speaking during his visit to KCCI, has asked a review of regulatory duty imposition on import of air conditioners and other such products from Malaysia. He said that Pakistan’s Ministry of Commerce should come up with a better solution that does not impact Malaysian exporters. President KCCI Junaid Esmail Makda while expressing his views, said that Pakistan could not afford to spend billions of dollars on imports of luxury items. Yet he assured the Malaysian CG that KCCI would discuss this particular issue with PM’s Advisor, as Pakistan would not retreat from its commitments made under the FTA with Malaysia. Highlighting some of the potential areas, Malaysian CG advised Pakistani exporters to look into the possibility of exporting Basmati, IRRI-6 rice, and mangoes to Malaysia. The News. Increase in exports: Pakistan lags behind its regional competitors Pakistan’s exports had increased at very low pace as against its regional competitors due to higher cost of doing business, energy costs, low productivity and higher imports tariffs on inputs. Commerce Division informed a parliamentary committee that Pakistan’s exports had increased at the annual growth rate of only 5.1% whereas its regional competitors registered growth rate of 16% during the period 1991-2018. However, to boost the declining export, the current govt. has taken a number of steps; like revision of exports enhancement package, decreasing gas tariffs for LNG for Punjab at par with other provinces, revision of imports and exports regulations and PM’s Export Package Schemes. TDAP further underlined reasons for low exports as missing export culture of multi-nationals, lack of export-oriented FDI in Pakistan, no legal cover for product innovation, low value addition, lack of focus on services sector etc. To meet these challenges, TDAP’s way forward includes; expansion of the trade infrastructure, setting up of Expo Centers at Islamabad, Quetta, Peshawar, Look-Africa Plan, increase in subsidy level for non-traditional markets to 80%, for participation in international exhibitions and establishment of export promotion committee. The Nation. Non-filers not exempted from income source probe Non-filers of tax returns are not exempted from probe into source of their income despite a recent lifting of ban on them to buy cars. FBR has established digital links to obtain data of registration from provincial authorities. However, if real-time data connection is not available then the FBR authorities would sort out information on the basis of withholding statements provided by the provincial authorities. The News. Pakistan to likely face another 41% hike in gas prices from July Consumers, already reeling from a rise in inflation, should brace for another 41% hike in gas prices from FY20 as the gas utilities have been given the go-ahead to calculate gas prices on the basis of exchange rate of PKR 180/USD to determine their revenue requirement for FY20. The govt. had increased gas prices by up to 143% last year and revised consumer slabs. Tribune. LSM growth falls by 2.3% in 7 months Pakistan’s Large Scale Growth (LSM) growth declined by 2.3% in 7MFY19 as compared to 7MF18, reported PBS. The negative growth is mainly the outcome of dip in production of iron and steel products 9.13%, pharmaceutical products 9%, followed by automobiles 5.24%, coke & petroleum products 4.78%. Electronic products sector recorded growth of 19.22%, followed by wood products that grew by 18.12 %. The Nation. \ FBR receives details of 152,000 offshore accounts FBR has informed the NA’s Standing Committee on Finance that it did not set any recovery target out of total 152,000 offshore accounts because there was possibility of moving out money through legal channels. FBR has sent out tax notices to 400 Pakistanis having offshore assets and possessing PKR 55Bn. The panel was informed on the basis of information received from the OECD, so far only one person has been taxed and the FBR recovered PKR 170Mn from him. The News. Economic Indicators List of Indicators Date / Period Unit Value Change Daily USD-Interbank USD-Open MKT 14-Mar PKR PKR 139.19 138.80 0.27% -0.07% KSE-100 index FIPI Pts. $ Mn 38,809 -8.24 -0.31% NM** Crude (AP'19) 14-Mar 14-Mar 14-Mar $/bbl 58.48 0.22% Gold (MA'19) 14-Mar $/oz 1,295.8 -1.05% Gold (10g) Local 14-Mar PKR 58,800 -1.03% Silver (MA'19) 14-Mar $/oz 15.18 -1.80% Cotton(KHI)-40 kg 14-Mar PKR 9,324 1.16% Kibor-6M 14-Mar % 10.84 0.00% 8-Mar FY19 $ Bn 14.97 WoW 0.07% Remittances Jul-Feb 19 $ Bn 14.35 11.82% Exports* Jul-Feb 19 $ Bn 15.11 1.85% Imports* Jul-Feb 19 $ Bn 36.64 -6.13% Trade Balance* Jul-Feb 19 $ Bn -21.52 11.03% -8.42 1.45 16.79% -17.56% Forex Reserves ADB offers Pakistan to explore options of SME financing using local currency bonds Adviser to PM on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood in a meeting with the ADB Director General Werner Liepach said that Pakistan’s energy needs, especially from the industry, are on the rise and it is the govt.’s priority to provide affordable energy to industries. The ADB DG offered to explore options of SME financing using local currency bonds and apprised the adviser of their ongoing technical assistance programs in Pakistan. Tribune. Largest hosiery producer goes public Interloop Limited, billed as the largest hosiery producer in Pakistan, managed to raise PKR 5.02Bn in the book building process making it largest private sector IPO of the country. The company plans to utilize the raised amount to finance a new facility at Faisalabad to expand hosiery production capacity and set up a denim production facility in Lahore. Following the completion of its issue, the company would be amongst the top 50 companies listed on the Pakistan Stock Exchange by market capitalization. The book building process was over-subscribed by 1.37 times with price closing at PKR 46.10/share. The general public will be offered shares in IPO on Mar 21-22 at the strike price of PKR 46.1/share. Dawn. YoY Jul-Jan 19 $ Bn $ Bn Jul-Jan 19 Jul-Jan 19 LSM Growth* % % Jul-Feb 19 Avg. CPI Discount Rate % Feb-19 WoW= week, NCCPL, KSE, Sources: KCCI Research, PMEX ** Not Meaningful on week; Current Account Foreign Direct Inv. -2.30 6.46 10.25 SBP, PBS* Major Currencies GBP, 14-Mar-19, 184.7 195 185 175 165 155 145 135 125 115 105 95 Mar-18 USD EUR, 14-Mar-19, 157.6 USD, 14-Mar-19, 139.3 Jun-18 GBP Sep-18 EUR Dec-18 Mar-19 Source: KCCI Research ; Quote of the Day "Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it." Benami Act has overnight effect on other laws Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act 2017 has overnight effect on other laws, including Banking Companies Ordinance, for seeking information of benami banking transactions from banks. This was stated by Dr. Hamid Sarwar, FBR Member Inland Revenue Policy, while briefing the National Assembly Standing Committee. The benami law is not a revenue measure and it will create deterrence in society. The FBR will not use the benami law for increasing revenue collection. BR. Future LNG terminals: ”Govt. not to provide any financial subsidy, off-take guarantee” The ECC has decided that the govt. will not provide any financial subsidy and off-take guarantee for future LNG terminals. The existing two LNG terminals at Port Qasim had been contracted on take-or-leave basis costing government more than $ 0.5Mn per day, which places undue financial burden on the govt. Being cognizant of the traffic congestion at Port Qasim due to upcoming LNG vessels, it was decided that the main channel of PQA shall not house any more LNG terminals to ensure that port remains functional for other cargoes. BR. 14-Mar Charles R. Swindoll Chart of the Day Car Production and Sales in Pakistan 25,000 21,377 20,000 15,000 18,875 17,977 22,553 21,342 19,521 18,834 15,389 16,957 15,334 20,683 19,363 17,576 17,071 16,141 13,232 10,000 5,000 0 Jul-18 Aug-18 Sep-18 Oct-18 Nov-18 Dec-18 Jan-19 Feb-19 Production Sale Source: KCCI Research, PAMA Disclaimer This report has been prepared by KCCI Research & Development Cell. The information contained herein have been compiled or arrived at based upon Foreign reserves increase to $ 14.97Bn information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and in good faith. Total liquid forex reserves held by Pakistan has increased to $ 14.97Bn on 8th Mar’ 19. The reserves held by SBP have increased by $ Such information has not been independently verified. 6Mn to $ 8.12Bn whereas, the net reserves held by commercial banks stood at $ 6.84Bn. BR. icon represents the sole viewpoint of the KCCI R&D Cell, and is stated to enrich the readers' understanding of the news item. The