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S. Korean crude oil imports up 21.1% in Dec

SEOUL: December rose 21.1 percent from a year earlier to 97.9 million barrels, preliminary data from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy showed. The final data will be released later in the month by state-run Korea National Oil Corp (KNOC). The ministry did not break down imports by country of origin. South Korea’s total crude imports in November fell ... Read More »

Pak rupee sheds value in cash-free market

KARACHI: The Pakistani rupee Friday slightly depreciated against the US dollar in open market, however it remained firm in interbank. According to the local money market, the dollar gained five paisas in the cash-free market for trading at 106.20 and remained unchanged in interbank at 104.80. On Thursday, the American currency gained 30 paisas in interbank for selling at 104.80 ... Read More »

Nepal Govt to import 90 megawatt electricity from India

KATHMANDU: Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), the state-owned power utility, is gearing up to import additional 90 megawatt (MW) of electricity from India by January end in view of easing off the power outage in the country. The installation of Dhalkebar-Mujjafarpur inter-country transmission line is due to complete in a month and a technical test necessary for the same is in ... Read More »

Zimbabwe to step up food imports

PRETORIA: Zimbabwe’s Agriculture Minister Joseph Made says food imports will be stepped up following reports that the country is left with just two months’ supply of grain. Aid agencies warned earlier this year that 1.5 million Zimbabweans would go hungry after a drought hit maize production badly. Local grain millers say the country only has around 248,000 tonnes of maize ... Read More »

North Korean food imports from China down again in November

BEIJING: North Korean food imports from neighboring China dropped again in November, according to recent figures from Chinese customs. The drop continues an ongoing decline in food shipments beginning in the summer months, and has seen cereal imports decrease by about 80 percent, from over 5000 tonnes to 1000. Other commonly traded goods, like products of the milling industry also ... Read More »

South African white maize prices over double in 2015

JOHANNESBURG: South African white maize prices more than doubled in 2015 to record highs on mounting concerns about a scorching drought, which has been exacerbated by an El Nino weather pattern. South Africa’s central bank, which is in a tightening cycle, has frequently expressed concern about the impact of the drought and food price pressures on inflation in Africa’s most ... Read More »

Iran to export oil to Afghanistan

TEHRAN: Iran’s Petroleum Ministry and Afghanistan’s Ministry of Industries and Commerce signed an agreement for Iran’s one million tons annual exports of oil products to Afghanistan. Based on the articles of the signed agreement between the Islamic Republic of Iran’s oil minister and the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan’s industries and commerce minister, such oil products as oil gas, jet gas, ... Read More »

AfDB approves $1.5m for Zimbabwe’s beef, leather industries

HARARE: The African Development Bank has approved $1,5 million support for Zimbabwe’s beef and leather industries. The objective of the project, which will start in June this year is aimed at catalysing Zimbabwe’s economic growth through reviving beef and leather industries, AfDB said. According to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, which is the implementing agency of the project, the ... Read More »

Turkey’s foreign trade deficit narrows 25% in 11 months of 2015

ANKARA: Turkey’s foreign trade deficit narrowed by 25 percent year-on-year in the first 11 months of 2015 thanks to the decline in imports amid the drop in the oil price, according to data revealed by the Turkish Statistics Agency (TÜİK) on Dec. 31. The deficit narrowed to $57 billion in the January-November period compared to the same period of 2014. ... Read More »

General Electric to build $1b power plant in Saudi Arabia

WASHINGTON: The US industrial giant, General Electric, has announced to win a contract worth nearly $1 billion from the Saudi Electricity Company to build and supply a power plant in northern Saudi Arabia. Under the contract, the GE will build the Waad Al Shamal combined-cycle power plant and provide four advanced gas turbines, a steam turbine and turbine maintenance services. ... Read More »

KPT shipping intelligence report

KARACHI: The Karachi Port Trust (KPT) issued the following shipping report for the last 24 hours, ending 0700 hours on Friday. ALONG SIDE (Bulk Oil Pier): OP-I Mariann D.Petrol Alpine 29/12/15 OP-II Luzon Spirt D.LSFO Al Hamd 31/12/15 ALONG SIDE (East Wharves): 2/3 Apirades Naree D.Coal OC-Services 30/12/15 4 Steel Honesty D.Steel Golden 01/01/16 5 Kavala Seas L.Rice East Wind ... Read More »

PM announces Voluntary Tax Filing Scheme for traders

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Friday announced a Voluntary Tax Filing Scheme for the traders and said it would help increase revenues and take the country forward on path of progress and development. Addressing a large gathering here at the Prime Minister’s Office to launch the Voluntary Tax Filing Scheme by Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), he said that the ... Read More »

Gintech profit to hit $4.9m

TAIPEI: Taiwanese solar cell maker Gintech Energy Corp yesterday said it made NT$162 million (US$4.9 million) in net profit for November after swimming back to profits of NT$139 million in the third quarter. That represents earnings per share of NT$0.36. Gintech lost NT$696 million in the third quarter of last year, according to a company statement submitted to the Taiwan ... Read More »

India to allow duty free imports of 500,000 tons corn

MUMBAI: India will soon ask state-run traders to import half a million tonnes of duty-free corn after a second straight drought cut output, in what would be the country’s first overseas purchase in 16 years, two government sources said on Thursday. India has agreed to allow state-run traders such as PEC Ltd to import corn to curb rising prices and ... Read More »

Taiwan OBUs’ assets fall 1.7% to $187bn in Nov

TAIPEI: The 62 offshore banking units (OBUs) of banks operating in Taiwan posted total assets of US$187.01 billion in November, down US$3.159 billion, or 1.7 percent, from the previous month, the central bank said in a statement on its Web site. Among them, US$160.2 billion in assets were held by the OBUs of 37 Taiwanese banks, and US$26.807 billion in ... Read More »

Indonesia’s 25 banks to disburse micro loans in 2016

JAKARTA: In an effort to develop small and micro businesses, 25 banks have been approved to take part in the government-supported people’s business credit (KUR) micro loan program, with a total target of Rp 120 trillion (US$8.67 billion) loan disbursements next year. This year, only three state-owned banks — the BRI, the BNI and Bank Mandiri – took part in ... Read More »

CIMB Group expects GDP 4.6% in 2016

KUALA LUMPUR: CIMB Group expects Malaysia’s real gross domestic product (GDP) growth to be slightly slower at 4.6% in 2016. The operating environment will continue to be tough in the first half of next year and the impact of rising costs of living, ringgit weakness, rising job losses and tighter credit will all lead to consumer spending staying weak. However, ... Read More »

Pulses imports shot up to 45.27% in July-Nov 2015-16

NEW DELHI: Country’s pulses import shot up to $217.564 million in July-November 2015-16, increased by 45.27 percent, official statistics said. Pulses import increased by $67.799 million in July-November 2015-16 from $149.765 million in July-November 2014-15, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics mentioned. Pulses import volume scaled up to 363,579 metric tons in July-November 2015-16 from 245,458 metric tons in July-November 2014-15, up ... Read More »

Pakistan ‘to sell’ JF-17 Thunder jets to Sri Lanka

COLOMBO: Pakistan is likely to sell JF-17 Thunder aircraft, a third-generation fighter co-produced by Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) and China’s Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation (CAC), to Sri Lanka. According to IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, the agreement is expected during Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to Sri Lanka in the first week of January. Sharif’s upcoming talks in Colombo follow a ... Read More »

0.3% tax on banking transactions extended till 31st

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee of the cabinet (ECC) meeting, presided over by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, has approved to extend the period of applicability of 0.3% withholding tax on banking transactions till January 31, 2016. The proposal was submitted by the Federal Board of Revenue in this regard to the ECC. The committee was informed that the reduced rate ... Read More »