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Op-Ed section will have latest editorial and analysis…

Augmentation of textile woes

The culture of forming committees on pressing issues is the best option for the government to delay any solution. Textile exports of the country have been falling for the last five years as its share of trade has fallen from 2.2 percent to 1.8 percent in the global market. If the prevailing trend continues, the share of textile trade will ... Read More »

Businessmen strike again

The traders across the country held a successful shutter-down strike to protest against the imposition of withholding tax on bank transactions. Most of the markets in major cities and towns remained closed despite differences among the trade bodies on the schedule of the strike. On another note, the government has offered various incentives to the non-filers to bring them into ... Read More »

Cash in dollars

The financial discipline of the country is hostage to status quo. The country has been facing crisis after crisis since its inception in 1947 and despite marvelous achievements in various sectors, financial ailments continued to haunt this nation. The fault line lies in the shortage of cash but the financial managers in the successive governments always opted for short-term solutions ... Read More »

Tax on IT industry

The Pakistan Software Houses Association has rejected the imposition of 8 percent withholding tax on service providers, saying the step could have disastrous effects on the rapidly growing IT sector in the country. It says that the government has taken various initiatives at the federal and provincial levels for the development of the IT industry, but imposition of tax will ... Read More »

Sustainable development goals

It is not due to lack of funds, but lack of ability and capacity of the policymakers to achieve acceptable level of millennium development goals in the country. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were projected in 2000 to address extreme poverty, hunger, disease and inadequate shelter, besides promoting gender equality, education and environmental in the world. However, after running from ... Read More »

Risks for foreign investors

According to a report issued by a western research agency, risks for the foreign investors are very high in Pakistan due to fiscal and trade barriers as well as due to the country’s bureaucratic rigmarole. The report describes the security situation as volatile with slow outflow of investment that is expected to continue in the foreseeable future. However, the report ... Read More »

Keeping policy rate unchanged

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has decided to keep the SBP policy rate unchanged at 6.5 percent in the light of macroeconomic indicators, which had earlier led the central bank to continue with its accommodative monetary policy stance and had slashed the policy rate by a cumulative 300 basis points in fiscal year 2014-15. The GDP growth for financial ... Read More »

WHT controversy lingers on

For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. If action is imprudent, the reaction will also be imprudent and that is the punch the government policy-makers are going to receive after imposition of withholding tax on the bank transactions. The government has taken a right decision to tax everyone who owns a taxable income, but it is trying ... Read More »

Need to set up close business ties with Iran

Iran has been planning to launch oil and gas projects worth $185 billion by 2020 after successfully signing a nuclear deal with the world powers. Iran has followed a realistic approach during the long years of sanctions and has emerged as a real economic power not in the region but also on the world development index. The deal has opened ... Read More »

Cause and effects of trade deficit

The country has been facing trade deficit for a long time, but halfhearted efforts on the part of the policy makers never worked well and the problem is persistently haunting the national economy. According to a report issued by the State Bank of Pakistan, the country’s trade deficit increased to $17 billion in 2014-15 from $16.59 billion in 2013-14 despite ... Read More »

Additional tariffs on electricity bills

The government has imposed a set of new tariffs on electricity bills, putting the already repressed economy in disarray and industrial growth in doldrums. The problem is the circular debt which is a phenomenon emerging from the difference between higher cost of electricity production and lower collection of revenues from power consumers. The government claims it has to subsidize the ... Read More »

Import of LNG from China

Pakistan and China are heading towards another milestone in the history of cordial relations. This time the energy starved Pakistan will import liquefied natural gas (LNG) from China. According to Minister of Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Pakistan has started construction work on a 700-kilometre pipeline to import LNG from China and the project will be jointly funded ... Read More »

SBP’s concern over falling exports

In its third quarterly report on the state of economy, the State Bank of Pakistan observes a positive change in the macroeconomic environment, but clearly expresses concern over the falling exports. The report says that the first and foremost, exports, the prime source of foreign exchange earnings for the country, have been stagnant in the recent past, and declined during ... Read More »

SCO — a new era of partnership

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation or SCO or Shanghai Pact has admitted Pakistan to its fold as a full member at the SCO Summit Conference in Ufa. Pakistan’s entry into the organization is being seen as the success of diplomacy as this forum will provide the country a strategic, economic and diplomatic space in the region and as well as in ... Read More »

Tale of textile ministry

Pakistan is a leading cotton producing country with textile industry as a major earner of foreign exchange. Bangladesh is not even in the list of cotton producing countries, but has become one of the leading exporters of textile products all over the world exceeding Pakistan. The reason is simple. The Bangladeshi government took the textile sector seriously, worked hard, made ... Read More »

Hope of $50b funding for power projects

According to newspaper reports, Three Gorges Corporation, the state-run power company of China, is taking keen interest in a financing consortium to fund up to $50 billion of hydroelectric power projects in Pakistan. The company is interested to launch power projects in Pakistan in collaboration with the International Finance Corporation. Pakistan and China have already signed agreements worth $46 billion ... Read More »

IMF forecast of Pakistani’s economy

The International Monetary Fund (IMF), in its World Economic Outlook report for July, has revised its forecast for economic growth of Pakistan down to 2.6 percent from 2.9 percent for 2015. Earlier in April, the fund had projected the growth rate at 2.9 percent for 2015 and 3.8 percent for 2016. According to experts, 0.3 percent is not a big ... Read More »

Need to set up tax-free industrial zones

According to newspaper reports, the government has decided to grant income tax exemptions to the newly-established companies in energy and food sectors to improve industrialisation and overcome energy crisis in the country. The government has already exempted certain businesses from paying income tax on total gains and as the first step, it has extended the exemption period on the income ... Read More »

Kashmir – a big hurdle in Pak-Indian trade

The All Parties Hurriyet Conference, an amalgamation of 32 political parties in the Indian-held Kashmir, has expressed the hope that cordial relations between Pakistan and India can pave the way for settlement of the Kashmir dispute. In a statement issued in Srinagar, the party welcomed a proposed meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on ... Read More »

Challenges of climate change

According to Pakistan Economic Survey 2014-15, the 5,000 glaciers are melting faster in Pakistan than other parts of the world. The survey noted that the floods in Pakistan brought death and destruction as well as economic losses to the tune of more than $15 billion in 2010. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had described the floods as slow moving Tsunami ... Read More »