Mobile broadband connections surge to 46m

ISLAMABAD (APP): Pakistan is witnessing a reasonable mobile broadband (3G/4G) growth as about 46 million users out of total 48 million are mobile broadband consumers, registering 21.6 per cent tele-density in this domain till September 2017. A revolution did commence with the introduction of wireless internet connectivity on hand-held devices, particularly 3G, 4G/LTE. About 45 million users out of total 48 million are mobile broadband consumers while remaining breakup according to technology consists of DSL with 1.5 million users, HFC with 51226 users, Wimax 155,747 users, FTTH 52749 users, EvDo 568,368 million and 7042 users use other means. People are increasingly using mobile phones to access internet that accounts for 70 percent increase during the last year—a 13 percent hike in comparison to the previous year. As per statistics issued by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) here on Tuesday, there exists 141 million total mobile users in the country with 70.25 cellular mobile tele-density till the period mentioned.

The major contribution in broadband growth has been made by mobile segment as 3G and 4G subscribers reached 46 million. Till the period, Ufone 3G users reached 5.4 million, Telenor users reached 10.7 million, Mobilink 3G users reached 13.64 million and Zong 8.9 million. The number of 4G users of Telenor are around 0.9 million, Mobilink 1.3 million and Zong 4.6 million.

The government facilitating the broadband service providers through Universal Service Fund for proliferation of broadband to the un-served areas, allocating new frequencies in the various bands for WiMAX and introducing other new wireless technologies. Various operators are deploying new technologies such as WiFi, EVDO, WiMAX, Optical Fibre Cable, DSL and HFC for access provision to capture market share in the broadband sector.

Oil companies suggested to invest in olive plantation

PESHAWAR (APP): Speakers in a stakeholders’ meeting in Karak have asked oil companies to make investment in plantation of olive plants in the district. The purpose of the meeting in oil and gas rich district hosted by the district administration was to review development initiatives under taken by federal and provincial governments as well as different local and foreign companies in the area. Karak Deputy Commissioner Shafiullah Khan chaired the meeting held at DC Office Karak. Various public and private sector stakeholders were invited to discuss the development initiatives of federal and provincial government as well as the CSR Component by Oil and Gas, and Telecom Companies operating in the district. The meeting was attended by officials from SMEDA, PODB, MOL, OGDCL, Forest Department, ARI Tarnab, EPA, and Progressive Growers. Abdullah (AC), Mir Khawas (AC), Asmatullah (TMO, Karak), and Rehmatullah (DFO) also attended the meeting.

 During the meeting, Ishfaq Afridi (Project Director, Swat Honey CFC SMEDA) delivered presentation about the activities of SMEDA with reference to Karak.

He explained about the joint activities in collaboration with the Honey Association, Agriculture Research (GoKP), Pakistan Oil Seed Development Board, and the Khushal Khan Khattak University, Karak and added that along with the completion of Swat Honey Project, the SMEDA facilitated replication of the honey project by SMEs at Tarnab.

Similarly, Hafizullah Khan (Project Director, Fruit Dehydration Unit, Swat), another SMEDA implemented project while appreciating the proactive approach of the District Administration, informed the audience about the agriculture and honey value chain issues, and the proposal on establishment of Honey Development Centre at Karak.

Talking about the economics of Edible Olive cultivators in inter-cropping with the Berseem and Bajra, he termed the model to be equally beneficial for Honey and Dairy Development. Regarding the difficulties faced in Olive orchards development, he suggested that the financial facilitation by Oil and Gas companies to the local communities for fencing and modern irrigation over 100 acres will play a vital role in this regard. He added that, the plantation of 30,000 olive plants may result in Rs465 million throughout the olive value chain after five years.

Shah Sawar Khan (Project Director, Olive-Tarnab), briefed the participants about the Olive Project and its progress till date. He offered the Oil and Gas Companies the availability of free of cost Olive Plants subject to the plantation within properly protected and sufficiently irrigated land.

Speaking on the occasion, Karak DC Shafiullah Khan stressed need for synergetic efforts by all stakeholders for development of the district. He said that the opportunity of Olive plants’ offer by KP government should be availed for the green and prosperous KP. He persuaded the Oil and Gas Companies to play active role in olive plantation within suitable places of their boundaries as well as to facilitate the local communities in shape of fencing and irrigation support. The participants appreciated the initiative of the Karak DC and expressed willingness and optimum efforts for olive orchards establishment.

Pakistan elected president of commission on trade & development

ISLAMABAD (APP): Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations Ambassador Farukh Amil has been elected as President of the Commission on investment, enterprise and development of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva, Switzerland. According to the message received here, the 9th annual session of the commission is being held in Geneva from November 20 to 24. This year’s session is addressing as its main theme: “From decisions to actions: Investment and enterprise development as catalysts for accomplishing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. Pakistan’s presidency and active participation at the forum provides an opportunity to share the experiences as well as learn best practices to help improve investment climate in the country. “Pakistan’s election to lead the UN Commission on Investment reflects international community’s recognition of our role as an important player in multilateral fora on trade and development.

In further recognition of our standing in the developing world as well as our role in the United Nations development machinery, Pakistan is set to assume the chairmanship of the Group of 77 and China in Geneva for the year 2018," the statement said.

The commission on investment, enterprise and development is an important UN forum which brings together UN Member States, investment promotion and technology agencies, the business community, academia and civil society. A large number of Ministers, senior officials and business leaders are participating in discussion on innovation, e-commerce and mobilising enterprises and foreign direct investment for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

 CRIS provides assistance to growers for best quality kinnow

SARGODHA (APP): Citrus Research Institute Sargodha (CRIS) Director Nawaz Maken has said the institute is providing assistance to the growers for enabling them to get best yield from kinnow orchards. In a press statement issued here on Tuesday, he urged the growers to consult with the institute for making their produce best and adopt modern techniques. He said that current kinnow season would provide quality bumper crop which was a sign of good export of the produce. He said that seedless kinnow was demanded all over the world and best produce and rates could also be received through cultivation of seedless variety. He said the provincial government had given subsidy to counter fruitfly and growers had received best results from this opportunity. He said that kinnow was a major crop of the area and large number of kinnow was being exported from here, adding that growers and processors can receive best rates of their produce after adopting modern techniques.