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Mercedes dominate opening practice as F1 roars back

July 03, 2020: Defending six-time champion Lewis Hamilton topped the times ahead of Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas as Formula One roared back at Friday's opening practice at the belated and surreal season-opening Austrian Grand Prix.

Three months after the cancellation of the original campaign starter in Australia and six months on from the last race meeting, it was business as usual for the dominant black arrows with Max Verstappen third for Red Bull ahead of McLaren's Ferrari-bound Carlos Sainz.

After a slow start on a damp surface at the Red Bull Ring, following overnight rain, Hamilton, sporting a new Black Lives Matter helmet to match his black race suit, was on the pace immediately in his W11 car of the same colour, repainted from silver this year to support equality and diversity.

It was as if the lengthy delay created by the COVID-19 pandemic had no affect on the teams, cars and drivers other than Ferrari whose new SF91 machine was, as forecast, unable to match the pace set at the front by Mercedes.

Ferrari plan to revise their car with updates for the Hungarian race in two weeks time following the second event in Austria next week.

Four-time champion Sebastian Vettel, who is set to leave the outfit at the end of the year, struggled to 12th, two places behind team-mate Charles Leclerc, in the eerie surroundings of the fan-less circuit in the Styrian Alps where pit-stops were curiously controlled with all the mechanics in masks and protective gear.

In mild weather conditions, with track temperatures measured at 22 degrees Celsius compared to 57 degrees for last year's race, Mercedes had no cooling problems as Hamilton outpaced Bottas by three-tenths and was six-tenths clear of Verstappen.

Sergio Perez was fifth in Racing Point's 'pink Mercedes' ahead of Lando Norris in the second McLaren, Alex Albon in the other Red Bull and McLaren-bound Daniel Ricciardo of Renault. Kevin Magnussen was ninth for Haas.

The session saw Verstappen recover from a spin at Turn One and Daniil Kvyat of Alpha Tauri run off at the final corner, causing Williams' George Russell to take dramatic avoiding action while Romain Grosjean was stuck in the Haas garage with brake problems throughout the session.

AFP/APP

OGDC starts commercial production of Gas and Condensate from...

July 03, 2020: Oil & Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) as operator with (50% share), Mari Petroleum Company Limited (MPCL) (33.33%) & Saif Energy Limited (SEL)(16.67%) in joint venture of Kohat Exploration Licence (E.L) has started commercial production of Gas and Condensate from its exploratory well Togh # 01, which is located in district Kohat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province.

OGDCL indigenously completed 8” inch dia, 3.5 Km flow line from |Togh Well # 01 to Sheikhan Well # 01. The well head assembly and other allied facilities including gathering area, separation facility, dehydration plant, storage facility, dispatch pumping station, gantry area and metering station were constructed using in-house resources.

On June 30th 2020 the first gas was successfully injected into M/s SNGPL network wherein OGDCL is committed to provide 9.0 MMSCFD gas and 240 barrel per day (BPD) of condensate.

OGDCL is aimed to intensifying field development activities, completion of ongoing development projects and utilization of latest production techniques to maintain and optimize oil & gas output.

The startup of commercial production would increase the oil and gas production of the Company and the Country thus helping in mitigating ever growing demand of domestic consumers and industry.

 

Press Release

Another wave of COVID-19 could bring about loss of...

July 3, 2020: The number of working hours lost across the world in the first half of 2020 was significantly worse than previously estimated, while the highly uncertain recovery in the second half of the year will not be enough to go back to pre-pandemic levels, even in the best scenario, and risks seeing continuing large scale job losses, warns the International Labour Organization (ILO).

According to the ILO Monitor: COVID-19 and the world of work: 5th Edition, there was a 14 per cent drop in global working hours during the second quarter of 2020, equivalent to the loss of 400 million full-time jobs (based on a 48-hour working week). This is a sharp increase on the previous Monitor’s estimate (issued on May 27), of a 10.7 per cent drop (305 million jobs).

The new figures reflect the worsening situation in many regions over the past weeks, especially in developing economies. Regionally, working time losses for the second quarter were: Americas (18.3 per cent), Europe and Central Asia (13.9 per cent), Asia and the Pacific (13.5 per cent), Arab States (13.2 per cent), and Africa (12.1 per cent).  

The vast majority of the world’s workers (93 per cent) continue to live in countries with some sort of workplace closures, with the Americas experiencing the greatest restrictions.

Key challenges ahead

While countries have adopted policy measures with unprecedented speed and scope, the Monitor highlights some key challenges ahead:

Finding the right balance and sequencing of health, economic and social and policy interventions to produce optimal sustainable labour market outcomes.

Implementing and sustaining policy interventions at the necessary scale when resources are likely to be increasingly constrained.

Protecting and promoting the conditions of vulnerable, disadvantaged and hard-hit groups to make labour markets fairer and more equitable.

Securing international solidarity and support, especially for emerging and developing countries.

Strengthening social dialogue and respect for rights.

“The decisions we adopt now will echo in the years to come and beyond 2030. Although countries are at different stages of the pandemic and a lot has been done, we need to redouble our efforts if we want to come out of this crisis in a better shape than when it started,” said ILO Director-General Guy Ryder.

ILO

ECC allows provision of gas at Rs 756 MMBTU...

July 3, 2020 (MLN): The Ministry of Industries and Production submitted a proposal to the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) on Friday, which stated that the national inventory for Urea fertilizer would be below the buffer stock level of 200,000 metric tonnes in the months of December 2020 to February 2021.

The ECC took up the proposal and decided that in order to cover this gap and maintain the buffer stocks at the required level, gas at the rate of Rs 756 MMBTU be provided to two shutdown plants at SNGPL networks, namely Agritech and Fatima Fertilizer, for three months w.e.f. July-September.

This would involve the GoP’s share at Rs 959 million much less than the revenue spent previously on using these plants to produce the Urea fertilizer to cover up the shortage.

Copyright Mettis Link News

PMEX Commodity Index settles at 4,427 points

July 03, 2020: On Thursday at Pakistan Mercantile Exchange Limited, PMEX Commodity Index inched lower by only 5 points to close at 4,427. The traded value of Metals, Energy and COTS/FX was recorded at PKR 11.664 billion and the number of lots traded was 13,420.

The major business was contributed by Gold amounting to PKR 7.283 billion, followed by NSDQ 100 (PKR 1.565 billion), Currencies through COTS (PKR 909.368 million), DJ (PKR 647.578 million), Silver (PKR 551.653 million), Crude Oil (PKR 343.368 million), Platinum (PKR 195.629 million), SP500 (PKR 82.982 million), Natural Gas (PKR 54.631 million) and Copper (PKR 29.355 million).  

In agriculture commodities, 9 lots of Cotton amounting to PKR 4.707 million and one lot of Wheat amounting to PKR 4.099 million were traded.

Press Release

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