Asian markets mixed as Wall St fails to inspire...

June 15, 2021: Most markets were mixed in Asia on Tuesday as traders struggled to track a record-breaking day on Wall Street, with the Federal Reserve's next policy meeting later this week in focus.

With coronavirus vaccines rolling out and businesses reopening in many countries, investors are broadly upbeat about the outlook for the global economy while fears have eased that an expected spike in inflation will force central banks to taper their ultra-loose monetary policies.

The release of data last week showing US consumer prices jumped far more than forecast was taken in stride, suggesting a growing acceptance of the Fed's insistence that spikes were to be expected owing to last year's low base of comparison and supply bottlenecks, among other things.

That puts the Fed's latest meeting -- and boss Jerome Powell's comments -- firmly in the spotlight with dealers looking for an idea about its plans for policy in light of the US economy's blockbuster recovery.

Several observers have warned that its pledge to not start tightening until unemployment is tamed and inflation is running persistently hot could backfire if the economy overheats, which could force it to hike interest rates at a sharper pace.

"We're in a tug-of-war between the understanding that we're having great economic growth and great earnings growth juxtaposed with the fact that we need to get our head wrapped around what inflation looks like and what it will mean both to profit margins and to the Fed," said Art Hogan, chief strategist at National Securities.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq both clocked record highs Monday, while London's FTSE hit a 2021 peak, despite expectations the UK government would delay lifting its remaining lockdown restrictions. The move was confirmed later in the day.

But trading floors remain nervous places as governments in parts of the world are still battling to overcome the virus and more transmissible variants, which are either forcing them to delay reopening or re impose fresh containment measures.

Hong Kong fell more than one percent as investors returned from a long weekend, with eyes on a nuclear plant across the border in China following a US report of a potential leak. Energy firms were also being weighed after Chinese President Xi Jinping ordered safety checks across the country following a massive fatal gas explosion in Hubei province.

Shanghai, Seoul, Manila and Jakarta also slipped, though there were gains in Tokyo, Sydney, Singapore, Wellington and Taipei.

Bitcoin held above $40,000 after Elon Musk said at the weekend that Tesla would start accepting the unit again once it is mined more ecologically, while it also got a boost from top hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones, who endorsed it as a good hedge against inflation.

However, Marc Odo of Swan Global Investments said: "These days, bitcoin's market pivots on what Elon Musk tweets -- for me, that's not a great indicator. It's like some billionaire's whim.

"I don't think there's anything fundamentally moving bitcoin one way or the other, other than rumors and tweets. That's not an asset class I want to be involved with."

AFP/APP

Industrial Power consumption surges by 15% during Nov-Mar FY21

June 15, 2021 (MLN): The total electricity consumption by Industrial sector during November- March FY21 has shown a growth of 15% YoY compared to the same period last year, Minister of Energy, Hammad Azhar via his Twitter handle informed.

“We are seeing even further acceleration in power consumption post March this year,” he added.

Copyright Mettis Link News

Intraday: PKR depreciates by 45 paisa

June 15, 2021 (MLN): The Pak Rupee lost ground to the dollar in an intraday session, opening weaker and losing further value. It has so far depreciated by 45 paisa since yesterday against the USD at the interbank market.

The dollar was quoted at 156.60/156.70 with trades being reported at 156.65.

The dollar had closed last day at 156.19.

Copyright Mettis Link News

Pakistan, Russia agree to make joint efforts for enhancing...

June 15, 2021: Pakistan and Russia have agreed to make joint efforts for enhancing bilateral trade volume.

The understanding came in a telephonic conversation between Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on Monday.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi welcomed the lifting of the embargo on the import of Pakistani rice by Russia.

He said Pakistan desires for early initiation of the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline project for the promotion of cooperation in the energy sector. 

The Foreign Minister said the signing of the supplementary agreement on the project between the two countries is a highly positive development.

Thanking Russia for supporting Pakistan in checking spread of the Coronavirus pandemic, Shah Mahmood Qureshi reminded his Russian counterpart of early provision of five million doses of the Russian anti-Covid vaccine Sputnik to Pakistan.

Radio Pakistan

First ever virtual rice expo 2021 to be held...

June 15, 2021: Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) has taken initiative to Host First Virtual REAP Rice Expo 2021, on Wednesday, 16th June 2021.

Due to the prevailing COVID pandemic, rice exporters are restricted from traveling and such large public gatherings. Therefore, REAP has planned to organize such an event Online Virtually and formed a dedicated team for making this event happened.

This event will be the Rice industry’s largest virtual event, featuring a program jam-packed with inspirational keynote speakers, unparalleled networking opportunities, Exhibitors Virtual Booths, and market outlook panels on special topics relevant to the Pakistani and International Rice Industry.

The main purpose of this event is to promote and project Pakistani Rice across the globe. In this mission Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, All Commercial Counsellors, and Trade Attaché in many countries are working day and night to spread the message across the globe for more participation from International Buyers.

REAP has received overwhelming responses from international participants. International major buyers of Pakistani rice have also agreed to join Virtual Conference in Panel discussions. REAP would like to take MINCOM, TDAP along with all Trade Embassies on board to make this event a great success.

Press Release

PM expresses satisfaction over COVID vaccination drive in country

June 15, 2021: Prime Minister Imran Khan has expressed satisfaction over the Covid vaccination drive in the country. 

Chairing a meeting to review progress in the vaccination drive in Islamabad on Monday, he stressed the need for timely vaccination and adherence to the standard operating procedures to prevent the spread of pandemic.    

The Prime Minister called for collective efforts by institutions and people to avert the Indian-like situation due to the pandemic.

The meeting was apprised that the number of vaccination centers has been doubled and mobile teams have been increased from 48 to 600.

The meeting was also informed that over ten million citizens have so far been vaccinated, which is a significant milestone. Furthermore, the public and private organizations are also ensuring vaccination of their staff.

Radio Pakistan

Federal budget for next fiscal year is growth oriented:...

June 15, 2021: Prime Minister Imran Khan says the federal budget for the next fiscal year is growth-oriented that will not only solidify economic stability but also promote key areas of the economy, including agriculture, industry, and housing.

Speaking at a meeting of party spokespersons in Islamabad on Monday, he expressed satisfaction that the country's economy has not only stabilized but is also moving toward growth.

The Prime Minister said while the international economy was severely hit by Covid-19, Pakistan covered the economic journey through a successful strategy.

Highlighting the key priorities, Imran Khan said the government focused on Kamyab Jawan Programme, Sehat Card, Ten Billion Tree Tsunami, promotion of science and technology, poverty alleviation, and generation of employment opportunities with an aim to effectively overcome the challenges facing the country.

Radio Pakistan

PM calls for early finalization of new mechanism of...

June 15, 2021: Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed the authorities concerned to finalize the new mechanism of providing targeted subsidy to vulnerable segments of the society at the earliest so that it can be formally launched next month.

He was speaking at a briefing in Islamabad on the new system being devised to provide subsidies to weaker segments of society by the government.

The Prime Minister said under the targeted subsidy, the deserving segments of the society will be provided financial assistance for purchasing essential commodities.

He said the government is committed to providing all financial resources for this purpose.

Appreciating the officials concerned for preparing a mechanism to provide a targeted subsidy, he said equal subsidy to both the rich and the poor is not only wastage of government resources but it also deprives the deserving ones.

Radio Pakistan

IT & Telecom sector: Reaching new heights

June 15, 2021 (MLN): The growth-oriented federal budget for FY21 which was announced on Friday has created positive vibes around several sectors of the economy. The slash in tax rates, abolished FEDs and other notable incentives have made Pakistan an attractive place to invest.

ICT & Telecom is an emerging sector and currently reaching new avenues of growth. Moreover, lockdown restrictions amid the Covid-19 pandemic have proved a blessing for this sector in disguise which is reflected in the volume of exports. 

During July-April 2021, Pakistan’s ICT & Telecom exports grew by 46% to $1.7bn as compared to $1.17bn in 10MFY21. In April 2021, these exports grew by 66% to $196million as compared to $118mn in April 2020.

In order to exploit the maximum potential of this sector and encourage the exports, the government has rationalized taxes and extended incentives in the recently announced budget.

The notable relief has given to Special Economic Zone (SEZs) in terms of eliminating the turnover tax and 10-year tax holiday for Special Technology Economic Zones (STEZs). Under this incentive, no sales tax will be imposed on the import of plants, machinery, and raw materials by special tech zones.

According to the budget document, export of services may be zero-rated under Islamabad Capital Territory Ordinance. Further, Technology companies can benefit from a 100% tax credit provided 80% of the export revenue is repatriated into Pakistan. However, this is a non-event for the listed tech sector. Currently listed companies such as NETSOL and SYS are already availing this tax benefit. This only changes the nature of tax benefit whereby all companies now fall under a zero-rated tax regime, a report by BMA Capital said.

The government has also provided relief for mobile phone users to boost the telecom sector via a reduction in With Holding Tax (WHT) on mobile phones by 2.5% to 10%. Meanwhile, the same sector will enjoy a 1% dip in Federal Excise Duty (FED) to 16%.

Further, the services of cloud computing and data storage have also been included in the ICT sector.

These incentives have the potential to take the ICT sector level ahead. Given these incentives, the Ministry of Information Technology has also appreciated government presenting a pro-growth budget with respect to the ICT sector.

Taking its official Twitter handle Ministry stated, “Dynamically evolving Information & Communication Technologies (ICTs) hold critical importance for fueling our economy. Present Government's incentives for IT industry will help boost Digital Economy.”

The present budget has also proposed that sales tax will be imposed on the online selling of goods.

On the development side, the document of the federal budget for FY22 revealed that the government has allocated Rs9.36billion for the Information Technology and Telecom Division under Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP), depicting a 40% increase when compared to the ongoing fiscal year. However, in a current FY, the same sector observed a slash in the budget by 9% to stand at Rs6.67bn.

Going by the statistics, it can be viewed that the government’s focus has been increasing towards the information technology and the telecommunication sector. Within the last five years, the government has increased the allocated development budget for the same sector by more than twofold.

The allocated increasing development budget with notable incentives and reduction in taxes may lead the IT and Telecom sector towards growth trajectory which will ultimately allow Pakistani companies to make their identity across the globe.   

Copyright Mettis Link News

Pakistan, Russia agree to make joint efforts for enhancing...

June 15, 2021: Pakistan and Russia have agreed to make joint efforts for enhancing bilateral trade volume.

The understanding came in a telephonic conversation between Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on Monday.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi welcomed the lifting of an embargo on the import of Pakistani rice by Russia.

He said Pakistan desires for early initiation of the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline project for the promotion of cooperation in the energy sector. 

The Foreign Minister said the signing the supplementary agreement on the project between the two countries is a highly positive development.

Thanking Russia for supporting Pakistan in checking the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic, Shah Mahmood Qureshi reminded his Russian counterpart of the early provision of five million doses of the Russian anti-Covid vaccine Sputnik to Pakistan.

Radio Pakistan

6,391FansLike
1,359FollowersFollow
249SubscribersSubscribe