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Pakintan's Oil Company To Invest $800 million

Pakistan's national oil company will invest more than $800 million developing new projects this year as 50-year-old gas and oil fields can't keep up with rising energy demand. Attacks by insurgents on pipelines and installations have disrupted gas supplies to textile exporters, which account for two-thirds of Pakistan's overseas shipments.

Oil & Gas Development Co. plans to drill in Baluchistan for the first time in six years as the government increases security against attacks from insurgents, tapping a region that holds half of Pakistan's gas reserves. Oil & Gas, Pakistan's biggest explorer, will drill at least nine of 51 planned wells in the western province that borders Iran and Afghanistan, Chief Executive Zahid Hussain said. "In Baluchistan we have entered areas that for about six years were high security zones," Hussain said in an interview in Islamabad yesterday. "The government and local people are supporting us." "The company is aggressive in exploration and investment" compared with its rivals Pakistan Petroleum Ltd. and Pakistan Oilfields Ltd., said Farhan Mahmood, an oil analyst at Karachi- based JS Global Capital Ltd., who has a "buy" recommendation on the stock. The company usually meets 85 percent of its targets and its success in finding fuels is also high, he said. Pakistan's government is targeting $15 billion investment over five years to develop its oil and natural gas industry in order to reduce dependence on imports and meet local demand, which it expects will double by 2020. Overseas Exploration Oil and Gas Development also plans to search for fuels overseas in a joint venture, Hussain said. Oil & Gas Development teams have been looking for exploration opportunities in Africa and the Middle East, he said. Oil and Gas shares, which account for 18 percent of the benchmark Karachi 100 Index, have gained 89 percent this year, outpacing the 37 percent rise in the key index. They rose 1.8 percent to 89.71 rupees at the 3:30 p.m. local time close in Karachi. The company produces about 1 billion cubic feet of gas a day, or a quarter of the country's total output. Its oil production is 60 percent of the country's total of 62,000 barrels a day. Pakistan imports 85 percent of the oil it uses. Pakistan needs to boost oil and gas production as the government battles extremist violence and its worst economic crisis in a decade. The government's bid to revive the economy has been hurt by Taliban militancy in the northwest. Share of Revenue Baluch nationalists want political autonomy and a share of the gas in the province, where Pakistan's largest gas fields, including Sui, are located. "We have to be close to the local people," Hussain, a former diplomat, said. Under the government's new petroleum policy announced this year, companies are bound to spend $25,000, up from $10,000, on the welfare of local people besides employing them on priority, he said. Gas supply to the Pirkoh purification plant from the Sui field in Baluchistan was suspended yesterday after unidentified men blew up the pipeline, the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan reported today, citing police. Nawab Akbar Bugti, a Baluch tribal chief, was killed in August 2006 in a military operation ordered by the country's former military ruler, Pervez Musharraf. Interior Minister Rehman Malik said in April Brahamdagh Bugti, Akbar's grandson, is now leading the rebellion.

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Other Important News In Pakistan


Expiry of EU anti-dumping duty paves way for Pakistan's export

The European Union's anti-dumping duty on bedlinen import from Pakistan expired on Thursday

The European Union's anti-dumping duty on bedlinen import from Pakistan expired on Thursday. Without the duty, Pakistan will be able to enjoy normal duties on its exports. Pakistan's products were subject to a 5.8% anti-dumping duty, on top of the normal customs duty. This made Pakistan's exports more expansive than it's major competitors' like India and China. The anti-dumping duty has cost the country between $250 and $300 million a year in bedlinen export.

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Terrorist Attacks Hurt Pakistan Stock Market

The attacks on Sri Lanka's cricket team yesterday drove stocks to tumble for the first time in three days.

The attacks on Sri Lanka's cricket team yesterday drove stocks to tumble for the first time in three days. The Karachi Stock Exchange 100 index dropped to 5,596.49 after news of the attacks broke. The drop in the market represents receding confidence in the stability of Pakistan, although there was some recovery in the market after it was announced that all of the cricket players were in stable condition. Five police officers died in the attack.

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Pakistan Continues to Search for Help

A recent report that was issued earlier this week by an influential think-tank in Washington D.C., called for $4 billion to $5 billion in support for Islamabad's infrastructure.

A recent report that was issued earlier this week by an influential think tank in Washington D.C., called for $4 billion to $5 billion in support for Islamabad's infrastructure. Senator John Kerry, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, used this report to push for legislation that would give $7.5 million in immediate aid to Islamabad, stating that "if we fail, we face a truly frightening prospect: terrorist sanctuary, economic meltdown, and spiraling radicalism, all in a nation with 170 million inhabitants and a full arsenal of nuclear weapons". Pakistan is the predominantly-Muslim nation with nuclear capability. Editor's note; Pakistani President Zardari recently returned from China, where he was seeking addition foreign aid from the Chinese government, but was only able to secure agreements for long-term projects between the two countries.

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Pakistan President Returns from China Empty Handed

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari returned from China empty handed as Pakistan continues to look for additional foreign aid from neighboring countries.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari returned from China empty handed as Pakistan continues to look for additional foreign aid from neighboring countries. China has already granted $500 million in loans, but Zardari was looking to China to write off some of Islambad's bad debt. Instead, both leaders reached agreements on long-term projects that will help build economic ties between the two countries, including agricultural growth and the development of a Pakistan-China railroad connection. Although China sees promise in increasing relations between the two government, Shabbir Cheema, director of the Asia-Pacific Governance and Democracy Initiative, has evaluated the situation by saying "Pakistan today needs China more than China needs Pakistan - that is why there is more enthusiasm in Pakistan about its relations with China that vice-versa".

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Pakistani Capital to Receive 450 Megawatts

For the first time in a decade, Pakistan's largest electricity supplier plans to expand its network by 450 megawatts.

For the first time in a decade, Pakistan's largest electricity supplier plans to expand its network by 450 megawatts. Karachi Electric Supply Co. announced that within the next three to five years, it will increase daily output by 38 percent by utilizing more efficient sources of energy. The ultimate goal of the company is not only to become more profitable by reducing costs, but also to reduce the occurrence of blackouts, which affect two-thirds of Karachi's population.

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Pakistan Needs Modern Day Marshall Plan

President Asif Ali Zardari announced that Pakistan needs a modern day "Marshall Plan" to improve conditions within the country.

President Asif Ali Zardari announced that Pakistan needs a modern day "Marshall Plan" to improve conditions within the country. There are currently 170 million people, who are under the age of 25, that are trying to cope with the poor economic and social conditions. Zardari called for "massive programs" to help strengthen education and labor conditions and asked for a $4.5 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund to invest in Pakistan's infrastructure.

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Banking Channel Must for Enhancing Pak-Iran trade : FPCCI

Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FPCCI) discusses the potential between Pakistan and Iran trade.

Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FPCCI) discusses the potential between Pakistan and Iran trade. The President of FPCCI Sultan Ahmed Chawla believes that the amount of trade between the two nations are insignificant and must be addressed; Chawla looks to Pakistani Ambassador to Islamic Republic of Iran, M.B. Abbassi to farther improve relations between the two nations and seek avenues to improve trade. Chawla also urges the Pakistani government to consider easier accessibility to Iran despite the Pakistani Banks' sanction against Iran.

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Pakistan to Reinvigorate Existing Ties with Australia

A recent visit from the Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith - first visit by an Australia Foreign Minister since 1998 - has lead to stronger and renewed ties between Pakistan and Australia sources report.

A recent visit from the Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith - first visit by an Australia Foreign Minister since 1998 - has lead to stronger and renewed ties between Pakistan and Australia sources report. The Pakistani Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has stated that talks between the governments have called for Australia to grant Pakistan a Generalised Preferential System (GPS) facility, which would allow for Pakistan to export semi-manufactured and manufactured goods free of duty or at reduced rates of duty. The Prime Minister also stated that the GPS facility would help generate new employment opportunities, which are necessary in order to combat terrorism and extremism.

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State Bank of PK Issues Guidelines on Islamic Financing for Agri

On Tuesday, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has released the guidelines on Islamic financing for agriculture.

On Tuesday, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has released the guidelines on Islamic financing for agriculture. This aims to help banks develop Shariah compliant products that meet the financing needs of their respective farming communities. The Guidelines cover various modes of Islamic financing such as Ijara, Musawamah, Murabaha, Salam, Musharaka that can be used for meeting financing requirements of farm and non-farm sector activities. The SBP has informed all banks to use the guidelines for developing their own Shariah compliant products that will help finance the agri sector. These Shariah compliant products must conform to SBP regulations and must be approved by their Shariah Advisors.

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Pakistan's BoI Secretary Puri Sees Positive Trend in FDI

Board of Investment (BoI) Sec. Tariq Iqbal Puri addresses the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)regarding Pakistan's investment outlook.

Board of Investment (BoI) Sec. Tariq Iqbal Puri addresses the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) regarding Pakistan's investment outlook. Sec. Puri believes that Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is showing a positive trend in Pakistan. The main reason for this is that foreign investors are taking interest in Pakistan's food basket and undiscovered potentials. LCCI Pres. Mian Muzaffar Ali is concern about the country's perennial problem on law and order and has challenged the government to come up with resolutions to address this problem. He further states that this issue on law and order is one of the main reasons why foreign investors are hesistant to invest in Pakistan. Sec. Puri assured the LCCI that the BoI and the government of Pakistan is doing its best to resolve this issue.

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