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China says ‘phase one’ trade deal reached with US

Dec 13, 2019: China announced Friday a "phase one" trade deal with the United States that includes a progressive rollback of tariffs and the protection of intellectual property rights, but the two sides have yet to sign the agreement.

The announcement came a day after President Donald Trump tweeted that the world's two biggest economies were very close to a "BIG DEAL" in their protracted trade dispute.

Chinese vice commerce minister Wang Shouwen told reporters Washington agreed to a "phasing out" of tariffs on Chinese goods, without offering details.

Vice finance minister Liao Min said China would not introduce tariffs on US products that had been planned as retaliation for fresh US duties on Chinese products on Sunday.

He did not offer details on whether China would roll back existing tariffs on US goods.

Wang said the agreement includes strengthening the protection of intellectual property rights, expanding market access and safeguarding the rights of foreign companies in China -- issues at the heart of US complaints about Beijing's restrictive economic policies.

US media reports said China would spend $50 billion on US farm goods -- a major Trump request -- but Chinese officials did not provide any figures at a press briefing in Beijing.

"The two countries have agreed on the text of a phase one trade and economic deal," Wang said at the news conference.

"Both parties agree that in the next step, they will complete the necessary procedures for legal review and translation as soon as possible, and negotiate the specific arrangements for the formal signing of the agreement.

"After the signing of the agreement, it is hoped that both sides will abide by the agreement, work hard to implement the relevant contents of the first phase of the agreement."

- Protecting Chinese farmers -

China said the partial deal would help expand its own agricultural exports to the US -- including cooked poultry, catfish products, pears and fresh dates.

"Some of these problems have been talked about for more than ten years, and this time there has been a substantive breakthrough," said Han Jun, vice minister of agriculture and rural affairs.

Any agreement to increase imports of US agricultural produce would be carried out in a way that will not harm Chinese farmers, he said.

US businesses have also complained about state subsidies and lack of equal treatment in China, issues that are not addressed in the "phase one" deal.

Although Trump tweeted Friday that negotiations on a "phase two" deal will start "immediately," the Chinese side opted to tread more cautiously.

"As for consultation in the next phase, it will depend on the implementation of the phase one agreement," Liao said.

The agreement was also in line with China's goal to further open up its economy and move towards more high-tech production, instead of remaining the low-cost factory of the world, Liao said.



Private sector borrowing decreases by Rs.70.47 billion in a...

December 13, 2019 (MLN): The non-government sector has retired a net sum of Rs.70.47 million during the week ended December 06, 2019, which brings the cumulative net borrowing for ongoing fiscal year FY2020 to Rs.68.24 billion. The net borrowing as of prior week was recorded at Rs.68.31 billion.

According to weekly data released by the State Bank of Pakistan, the sector's borrowing has dropped by Rs.405.29 billion over the year since the borrowing as of corresponding period of last year was recorded at Rs.473.53 billion.

The non government sector is divided into three broad categories namely, the Private Sector, the Public Sector Enterprises and NBFI. Commercial banks are the main source of financing for the private sector, incuding conventional banks, islamic banks and islamic branches of conventional banks.

This fiscal year, the private sector borrowed a net sum of Rs.78.75 billion, whereas the PSE's have retired Rs.11.22 billion and NBFI has borrowed Rs.700.6 million.

As we disintegrate the inflows and outflows within the private sector, we see that Conventional Banks lent a cumulative sum of Rs.31.55 billion, Islamic Banks lent Rs.14.67 billion and lastly the Islamic branches of Conventional Banks lent Rs.32.54 billion.


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Govt. borrowing expands by Rs.155 billion in a...

December 13, 2019 (MLN): The government of Pakistan has acquired an additional debt of Rs.155.18 billion during the week ended December 06, 2019, which brings its total net borrowing for ongoing fiscal year 2020 to Rs.488.11 billion. As of prior week, the government had borrowed a net sum of Rs.332.94 billion.

According to the State Bank of Pakistan's weekly estimates in this regard, this year's overall net borrowing as of this week has increased by Rs.82.74 billion over the year as last year's net borrowing for the same period stood at Rs.405.38 billion.

The government sector borrowings are divided into three broad categories based on the purpose of loan which are budgetary support, commodity operations and others.

Split three ways between these broad categories, the cumulative net borrowing for budgetary support was Rs.550.1 billion, while that for other purposes stood at Rs.1.34 billion. On the contrary, a net total of Rs.63.32 billion were retired off Commodity Operations.

The two biggest source of financing for budgetary support are the State Bank of Pakistan and the Scheduled Banks. This fiscal year, the central bank has lent out a net sum of Rs.7.77 billion to the government, out of which the Federal Government borrowed Rs.203.14 billion whereas, the Provincial Government retired Rs.182.36 billion, AJK Government retired Rs.10.86 billion, and the GB Government retired Rs.2.16 billion.

Meanwhile, the Scheduled Banks have lent out a net total of Rs.542.32 billion out of which the Federal Government borrowed Rs.546.98 billion while the Provincial Government retired Rs.4.65 billion.


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Pakistan, Germany ink financing agreement for Hydropower, Renewable Energy...

December 13, 2019: Pakistan and Germany have inked financing agreement for Hydropower and Renewable Energy Phase-II worth 2,145.29 million rupees.

A ceremony to this effect was held in Islamabad on Friday in which Secretary, Economic Affairs Division Dr. Syed Pervaiz Abbas and Country Director, German Development Bank Wolfgang Moellers signed the document on behalf of their sides. Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar was also present on the occasion. 

Addressing the ceremony, Hammad Azhar thanked the German government for the grant assistance which will be helpful in addressing the increasing energy needs of the region while employing environment friendly solutions. 

Country Director, KfW Wolfgang Moellers said that soon the population of Gilgit-Baltistan will have access to the green and sustainable energy, which will contribute towards socio-economic uplift of the masses. This will also help to create more jobs and promote tourism in the area.

Under the agreement, German Development Bank will provide grant assistance worth 12.5 million Euros to the Government of Gilgit-Baltistan and Agha Khan Rural Support programme. The project has one component of hydropower that will be implemented by the Water & Power Department of GB Government while the second component of biodiversity will be executed by the Agha Khan Rural Support Program.

The implementation of HRE-II in Gilgit-Baltistan will contribute to the provision of electricity for the population of Hunza and Nagar through utilization of its abundant water resources.

Radio Pakistan

Closing Bell: Enough triggers to lift market sentiments

December 13, 2019 (MLN): The equity market on Friday ended the trading session on a cheerful note as it gained 402 points and closed at 40,916 points level, only 84 points short of touching 41,000 mark.  

Throughout the day, bullish momentum continued on account of back to back news on the economic front which invigorated investors’ confidence. These include; an increase in the country’s foreign reserves by 120.7 million to eight months high at $9.23 billion.

In addition, Pakistan has offered Russia to become the strategic partner by acquiring shares of the country’s largest two state-owned oil and gas companies; OGDCL and PPL.

Further,  Pakistan Investment Bond (PIB) yields fell once again in Wednesday’s auction, all these events gave investors’ sentiment a boost, which was reflected in today’s session 

The Index remained positive throughout the session touching an intraday high of 41,077.83.

Of the 91 traded companies in the KSE100 Index, 63 closed up 25 closed down, while 3 remained unchanged. Total volume traded for the index was 180.34 million shares.

Sectors propping up the index were Oil & Gas Exploration Companies with 168 points, Commercial Banks with 77 points, Oil & Gas Marketing Companies with 55 points, Textile Composite with 28 points and Inv. Banks / Inv. Cos. / Securities Cos. with 14 points.

The most points added to the index was by PPL which contributed 92 points followed by OGDC with 77 points, HBL with 34 points, PSO with 26 points and SNGP with 20 points.

Sector wise, the index was let down by Fertilizer with 11 points, Automobile Parts & Accessories with 5 points and Leasing Companies with 1 point.

The most points taken off the index was by FFC which stripped the index of 9 points followed by THALL with 8 points, ENGRO with 8 points, MLCF with 6 points and MARI with 5 points.

All Share Volume increased by 43.69 Million to 270.71 Million Shares. Market Cap increased by Rs.75.04 Billion.

Total companies traded were 363 compared to 366 from the previous session. Of the scrips traded 227 closed up, 116 closed down while 20 remained unchanged.

Total trades increased by 11,619 to 94,367.

Value Traded increased by 3.26 Billion to Rs.11.67 Billion


Top Ten by Volume

Unity Foods28,273,000
The Bank of Punjab14,831,000
Fauji Foods13,577,000
Oil & Gas Development Company10,854,100
Soneri Bank9,538,500
Pak Elektron9,497,500
Pakistan Petroleum8,893,700
Fauji Cement Company7,963,500
Maple Leaf Cement Factory7,331,000



Top Sector by Volume

Commercial Banks37,926,700
Vanaspati & Allied Industries28,295,000
Technology & Communication27,309,500
Food & Personal Care Products21,332,420
Oil & Gas Exploration Companies20,250,000
Oil & Gas Marketing Companies18,900,600
Power Generation & Distribution12,306,000
Cable & Electrical Goods9,663,450



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