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Greater innovation needed to fight climate change, poverty and...

December 13, 2019: FAO Director-General QU Dongyu called for greater agricultural innovation to tackle the risks of climate change and reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

There is a need for innovation not only in science but also in policies, in how we do business and the way we think, said the FAO chief at the opening of SDG 2 - Linking Technological Innovation and Climate Change Actions for a World Free of Hunger, Malnutrition and Poverty event on Thursday, on the margins of COP25.

The event was co-organized by FAO and the two other Rome-based UN agencies, the International Fund of Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP).

Qu highlighted the important role of farmers who are ultimately those who apply agricultural innovation, and therefore, should not be left behind when it comes to technology and innovation.

FAO believes that when applied to the food and agricultural sectors, innovation, technology and digitalization can strengthen climate change actions, increase food production and support everyone involved in the food value chain.

Innovative solutions - several of which FAO promotes through its work - are already making a difference. These include precision and digital agriculture, enhanced early warning systems, remote sensing technologies, and climate-neutral approaches.

For example, precision agriculture can make water use more efficient and improve the management of soil nutrients. Precision irrigation can reduce water use between eight % and 20 percent.

Empowering farmers and strengthening coordination, especially at country level, are crucial to responding to climate change challenges and reaching all SDGs, and it is time to scale up and speed up our efforts, concluded the FAO Director-General.

Press Release

ADB approves 2020 administrative budget

Dec 13, 2019: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Friday approved a 2020 administrative budget (net internal administrative expense budget) of $726.7 million.

This represents a 5.2% increase over the 2019 administrative budget, consisting of a price increase of 2.9% and a volume growth of 2.3%, said a statement issued by the bank.

The 2020 budget will support ADB’s work program, which includes estimated commitments of $18.2 billion for sovereign operations, $3.4 billion for non-sovereign operations, and $422 million for technical assistance.

“ADB’s 2020 budget will support the implementation of Strategy 2030. Our work program is focused on the seven operational priorities set out in the strategy as well as operations quality, expansion of non-sovereign operations, and providing high-quality knowledge solutions,” said ADB President Takehiko Nakao.

“ADB is maintaining prudent budget growth by making the best use of existing resources and continuing to improve productivity and efficiency.”

The main cost drivers include an increase in staffing to deliver the bank’s long-term strategic plan, Strategy 2030; additional information technology (IT) requirements; and support for resident missions. ADB estimates that most of the increased staff will be for non-sovereign operations and related support, sovereign operations, and additional skills required for the seven operational priorities under Strategy 2030.

The Real-Time ADB IT reform program and the Digital Agenda 2030 will deliver benefits, in terms of quality, productivity, efficiency, and cybersecurity.

The ADB said it was committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty.

In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

APP

Pakistan playing key role in economic development of South...

December 13, 2019: Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood says Pakistan is playing a key role in economic development of South Asia and attaining the dream of regional integration.

He expressed these views in his congratulatory message to SAARC CCI Senior Vice President Iftikhar Ali Malik on nomination of his name for the slot of SAARC CCI President for a term of two years.

The Adviser said Pakistan believes in regional development through the platform of SAARC, as it is the way forward for peace in the region.

He said Pakistan would continue to play its part to fulfill the hopes of people of the region.

Radio Pakistan

Midday Report: The Benchmark KSE-100 Index up by 516...

December 13, 2019 (MLN): The KSE-100 index has gained around 516 points in the first session of Friday, and closed at 41,030 points as the index rebounded after profit-taking. The last time the index closed above 41,000 was on Feb 07, 2019.

Oil & Gas Exploration Companies has captured the maximum gained so far, as it has contributed 207 points to the benchmark index followed by Commercial Banks and Oil & Gas Marketing Companies with 71 and 50 points respectively.

Company-wise, the scrips of PPL, OGDC, HBL and POL have gathered the maximum points.

The index has traded in a range of 517 points and has touched an intraday high of 41,031 and intraday low of 40,514 points.      

Copyright Mettis Link News

PSX gave 19.8% return as of Dec 6, FY20:...

Dec 13, 2019: Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Friday said that under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan and due to the efforts of economic team Pakistan was swiftly moving towards economic stability.

In a tweet,she said Prime Minister Imran Khan assumed responsibilities as chief executive of the country in very difficult circumstances and averted the threat of default.

She said that from July to December 6, Pakistan’s stock exchange gave 19.8 per cent return which was highest during past six years.

She said that this year current account deficit has shrunk 73 per cent and Pakistan’s ranking in ease of doing business has improved by 28 positions and Moody’s upgrading outlook from negative to positive was acknowledgment by international institutions that national economy has improved.

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