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Issues & Analysis

Focus on clustered mapping of agriculture sector: Ahsan

January 31, 2015 - BR Report - Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Ahsan Iqbal, while meeting with a delegation led by Australian High Commissioner Peter Heyward here on Friday, said the government was focusing on the clustered mapping of agriculture sector for enhancing its growth. He stated the infrastructure that was needed for the transformation of the agriculture sector was either missing or dysfunctional. "Pakistan's agriculture has tremendous potential, but…

Initiatives taken to increase agri exports from Balochistan

January 25, 2015 - By Ijaz Kakakhel - ISLAMABAD: To improve living standard of Balochistan's farmers, government has announced several initiatives to increase their agriculture exports to several countries including Iran under in Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2012-15, sources told Daily Times on Saturday. Ministry of Commerce announced this in STPF to help the farmers so that exports could be increased. According to the incentives, farmers growing dates and olives in…

The illusions of economic development

January 24, 2015 - Dr Zafar Altaf - BR Report - The secret of the mastermind is found wholly in the use of imagination. And how true! We are now back to Balochistan where the PM has announced another package for the province that constitutes in area terms 47% of Pakistan. What are its requirements? Many and totally different from what has been stated in the two-day conference. The previous two packages for Balochistan provided by the two fact-finding missions of the National Assembly also…

Export of surplus wheat: Rs six billion subsidy approved by ECC

January 24, 2015 - Zaheer Abbasi - The Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has approved a subsidy of Rs 6 billion for the export of 1.2 million tons of surplus wheat available with Punjab and Sindh governments. A participant of the meeting, who requested anonymity, said that Ministry of Food Security and Research had proposed the export of 3 million tons but the ECC meeting chaired by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar decided to allow export of 1.2 million tons. He further…

Political stability helps improve economic indicators

January 23, 2015 ISLAMABAD, Jan 21 (APP): Despite challenges on different fronts, major economic indicators have shown positive signs of sustainable growth, mainly owing to improved foreign exchange reserves, workers remittances and investments because of political stability. For the first time in six years, GDP growth rate exceeded 4 percent (4.14%) in the financial year 2013-14. A considerable improvement has been witnessed in Large Scale Manufacturing (LSM) while the inflation…

The stake and its holders

Wednesday, January 21, 2015  - Dr Muhammad Yaqub - the News - Every government gets lost in its own game of self-enrichment and political survival, and begins to engage in temporary fire-fighting in economic policy matters leading to worsening the underlying economic conditions. In an article in this newspaper (‘A fundamentally flawed fiscal policy’, January 6) I had highlighted some deep-rooted budgetary problems to which each government, including the present one, contributed. In…

Fairer economic growth

Shahid Kardar -Dawn -January 20th, 2015 - ACHIEVING growth rates of 7pc plus to absorb the net annual additions to the labour force will require: a) higher rates of domestic savings to finance the investments needed to attain and then maintain such growth rates; b) better quality entrepreneurial and managerial skills. The deficiency in skills is a product of our weak educational systems, poor work ethics and SROs that protect different sub-sectors of industry, rendering irrelevant…

Sugar export: issue of rebate, freight subsidy to be reviewed: minister

January 14, 2015 Mushtaq Ghumman - BR Report- Commerce Minister Engineer Khurram Dastgir said on Tuesday that the issue of rebate and freight subsidy on export of 0.65 million tons of sugar extended to sugar mills will be reviewed in the light of situation recently witnessed in Sindh. Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet last month approved financial incentives of Rs 6.5 billion for the sugar mills with a justification that the mills will procure sugarcane at the fixed…

Bane of agricultural sector

January 13, 2015 - Adnan Falak - Nation - 2014 has been one of the worst years for the agricultural sector in Pakistan. It witnessed floods, inundating swathes of croplands, culminating in a price crash of at least two major crops, and causing the loss of billions to the agricultural sector. Environmental changes, natural disasters, lack of regulation and predatory profiteering are draining the lifeblood from our agricultural sector. Left unchecked, this situation can undermine our…

Haunting issues in SME financing

Mohiuddin Aazim Dawn- Mainstreaming undocumented SMEs into the supply chain of  industrial sector (eligible for bank credit) through a credit guarantee scheme introduced by the SBP should encourage banks to lend more to SMEs. AFTER a gap of six years, banks’ financing to small and medium enterprises rose in FY14. But the number of borrowers declined, indicating that additional lending didn’t contribute to financial inclusion. Worse still, the share of SMEs in banks’ total financing…

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