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Rupee continues to depreciate

July 23, 2019 (MLN): Pakistani rupee (PKR) depreciated by 6 paisa against US Dollar (USD) in today's interbank session as the currency closed the day's trade at PKR 160.59 per USD, against yesterday's closing of PKR 160.53 per USD.

The rupee traded within a very narrow range of 59 paisa per USD showing an intraday high bid of 160.75 and an intraday Low offer of 160.25.

Within the Open Market, PKR was traded at 160/161.50 per USD.

Alternatively, the currency gained 54 paisa against the Pound Sterling as the day's closing quote stood at PKR 199.55 per GBP, while the previous session closed at PKR 200.09 per GBP.

Similarly, PKR's value strengthened by 51 paisa against EUR which closed at PKR 179.55 at the interbank today.

On another note, within the money market, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) conducted an Open Market Operation in which it injected Rs.76.8 billion for 3 days at 13.36 percent.

The overnight repo rate towards close of the session was 13.30/13.40 percent, whereas the 1 week rate was 13.35/13.45 percent.

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Avanceon to enter retail fuel station automation space in...

July 23, 2019 (MLN): Avanceon Limited has signed a distribution agreement with Dover Fueling Solutions (DFS) to offer high-end integrated control and automation solutions for the retail fueling stations in Pakistan.

The agreement was signed in the DFS offices in Dubai, UAE and see the two companies collaborate on a number of high-profile projects in the near future.

Under this agreement, Avanceon will serve as a local distributor, sales representative and service provider for all of the DFS product brands, promoting all of DFS’ products, services and solutions including the products brands of OPW FMS, ProGauge, Tokheim and Wayne Fueling Systems.

Dover Fueling Solutions, a part of Dover Corporation, delivers advanced fuel dispensing equipment, electronic systems and payment, automatic tank gauging and wet-stock management solutions to customers worldwide. This partnership will mark Avanceon’s entry into the retail fuel station automation space and will assist in capturing a significant market share in this highly specialized, expanding downstream industry segment in Pakistan.

Syed Adeel Haider, Senior Business Manager Oil & Gas from Avanceon commented, “With Avanceon’s years of expertise in control and automation combined with DFS’ world class fueling solutions, we aim to provide true value to the key players in fuel retail and oil marketing companies in Pakistan.”

Jeroen de Gruijter, DFS Managing Director, EMEA commented added, “We are very much looking forward to developing DFS’ relationship with Avanceon and through working closely together. We are confident that we can deliver an innovative portfolio of products and solutions that will exceed customer expectations in the region.”

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UAE will set up Asia’s biggest visa center at...

July 23, 2019: The United Arab Emirate (UAE) will set up Asia’s biggest visa center at Karachi in September this year.

The UAE ambassador in Pakistan Hammad Ubaid Alzabi made the announcement while addressing a ceremony hosted by Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The ambassador said the embassy is closely following up on the progress of projects the UAE is implementing in Sindh, covering vital sectors such as telecommunications, agriculture, water, aviation, banking services, property, port management, oil and gas, renewable energy and infrastructure.

Ambassador Al Zaabi also visited the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the main financial market in Karachi and discussed with officials measures to strengthen economic cooperation.

WAPDA hydel generation surges to record level

July 23, 2019: The Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) hydel electricity generation surged to the record level, as its hydel power stations generated 7591 megawatt (MW) electricity during the peak hours on Monday.

This is the highest-ever hydel power generation in Pakistan, which became possible mainly due to power generation from Tarbela 4th Extension and Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Projects. Earlier, the highest-ever generation by WAPDA was 7585 MW, recorded on September 19 last year.

According to the details of yesterday’s hydel generation during the peak hours, Tarbela Hydel Power Station generated 2907 MW, Tarbela 4th Extension 1372 MW, Ghazi Barotha 1450 MW, Neelum Jhelum 973 MW, Mangla 210 MW and Warsak 175 MW, while other hydel power stations cumulatively contributed 504 MW to the National Grid.

Since installed capacity of WAPDA hydel power stations has risen to 9389 MW with phased completion of its three mega hydropower projects namely the 969 MW-Neelum Jhelum, the 1410 MW-Tarbela 4th Extension, and the 108 MW-Golen Gol, therefore, hydel generation this year is expected to touch new peaks beyond 8000 MW with increased water flows, raised level of water reservoirs and increased water indent by Indus River System Authority (IRSA) in the days to come.

It may be mentioned that WAPDA owns as many as 22 hydel power stations and provides about 31 billion units of hydel electricity on the average annually to the National Grid. The share of hydel generation greatly contributes in lowering the overall electricity tariff for the consumers, as electricity generated through other sources is far costlier than hydel electricity.

Petroleum Division plans to inject additional 400 MMCFD LNG...

July 23, 2019: The Petroleum Division of Energy Ministry is working on a strategy to further add around 400 Million Cubic Feet per Day (MMCFD) Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in distribution network of the two state companies, SNGPL and SSGC, by the end of this year.

Currently around 1200 MMCFD LNG is being added in the distribution network to meet the country’s energy needs. The capacity of Floating Storage and Re-gasification Units (FSRUs) is also being increased.

An official from the petroleum division has said that America and Australia are emerging as the largest exporters of LNG in the world.

He highlighted the importance of imported LNG, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and trans-country gas pipeline projects with Turkmenistan, Russia and Iran, saying oil and gas exploration and production companies could not find any major find since long, while the country’s existing hydrocarbon reserves were depleting gradually.

Discussing the government strategy to step up oil and gas exploration activities in potential areas, he said a proposal was being considered to hold road shows in different countries for award of oil and gas exploration blocks.

 “We are in the search for suitable destinations. Six to seven events including Abdu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference, Energy moots in Calgary and Moscow are scheduled to be held in coming months and these could be better platforms for the purpose.”

He was of the view that such international events could prove fruitful for Pakistan to hold the road shows as delegations from across the world gathered there and looked into possibilities of future investments. “It will be better instead of visiting country to country.”

He said the Petroleum Division had recently held bidding for 10 exploration blocks, out of which eight had been awarded to qualified bidders. While, bidding for 15 to 20 more blocks had been planned by end of this year with an aim to step up oil and gas exploration activities and achieve self-sufficiency in the energy sector.

Besides, he said the government was preparing a summary for creating new oil and gas exploration zone in potential areas of erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Balochistan. Accordingly, a summary would be presented before the Council of Common Interests for approval, he added.

Explaining the existing exploration licensing zones, the official said the country had been divided into four zones, consisting of West Balochistan-Pishin-Potowar Basins, Kirthar, East Balochistan-Punjab platform-Suleman Basins, Lower Indus Basins and Indus and Makran Basins.

Currently the country’s total sedimentary area is around 827,268 square kilometers, out of which 320,741 km or 39 percent of the area is under exploration.

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