PTCL to provide free broadband to Sweet Homes

Lahore(Staff Reporter): Pakistan Telecommunications Company Limited (PTCL) has provided free broadband services to Pakistan Sweet Homes, a non-profit organization established by the Bait-ul-Mal for the care of young orphans. In this way, PTCL will enable orphans to become contributing members of society. Under the scheme, PTCL has provided high-speed broadband connectivity free of charge to 12 Sweet Homes located in all the four provinces for a period of three years. The Sweet Homes are in Sargodha, Gujrat, Okara, Attock, Karachi, Nawabshah, Mansehra, Mardan, Swat, Kohat, Zhob and Quetta.

Sikandar Naqi, Chief Business Development Officer PTCL, has reiterated the company’s goal towards achieving various social objectives and has emphasized the role the Broadband service will play in the mental development of the children.

“State-of-the-art ICT services will definitely help the  Sweet Homes to transform children into individuals who are not only self-reliant and financially independent but who are also adept at social integration,” Naqi said.

South Korea unveils stimulus to

combat export slump

SEOUL (AFP): South Korea on Wednesday unveiled a stimulus package, including an extra six trillion won ($4.94 billion) in public spending, to bolster an economy struggling with falling exports and high youth unemployment. The package, announced by the finance ministry, came as Asia's fourth-largest economy in Asia saw its exports plunge 18.5 percent on-year in January -- the sharpest decline for more than six years. Exports account for more than 50 percent of the country's GDP, according to the World Bank. "The government will mobilise all available means and resources in order to boost domestic consumption and exports in the first quarter to March and to help create new jobs," the ministry said in a press statement.

It will front-load government budgets and policy loans to businesses during the three-month period, injecting an additional 21.5 billion won ($17.4 billion).

Public spending for the first quarter will be increased by six trillion won to 144 trillion won and lending by policy banks will be jacked up by 15.5 trillion won to 115.9 trillion won.

It will also extend until June a programme to cut consumption tax on

passenger cars, which was set to finish at the end of December.

Domestic auto sales plunged 40 percent last month after South Korea rolled back a 1.5 percentage point cut in auto consumption tax.

"We expect the increased front-loading to push up growth by 0.2 percentage points in the first quarter", Deputy Finance Minister Lee Chan-Woo was quoted as saying by Yonhap news agency on Tuesday.

"We have to keep the momentum alive in the first quarter so that the

economy continues moving on in the following quarters", he said.

The Bank of Korea last month revised its GDP growth forecast down from 3.2 percent to 3.0 percent for this year, citing factors like the signs of a slowdown in China -- the South's biggest export market.

Last year, the South's economy grew at its slowest pace since 2012 as

exports faltered in the face of a global slowdown and rock-bottom oil prices.

Exports for the whole of 2015 fell 8.0 percent -- the first contraction for three years.

APWC demands judicial probe of

Sundar estate tragedy

LAHORE (PR): The All Pakistan Workers Confederation has demanded the establishment of a judicial commission to investigate the collapse of a factory in the Sundar Industrial Estate, as a result of which some 50 workers were killed. At a meeting at the Bakhtiar Labour Hall, the participants urged the government to pay a compensation of Rs 2.5 million to the family of every worker who lost his life in the tragedy. APWC General Secretary Khursheed Ahmed presided over the meeting which was also addressed by Rubina Jamil, Niaz Khan, Akbar Ali Khan, Rana Hasan Muhammad, Osama Tariq, Muhammad Anwar Gujjar, Yousaf Baloch, Khushi Muhammad Khokhar and Hasan Munir Bhatti.

The meeting also demanded that industrial workers be provided with safety equipment in line with the ILO conventions. The meeting also paid glowing tributes to Allama Iqbal for conceiving a separate homeland for the Muslims of subcontinent.

Al-Ameen Funds’ Assets surges by 530 percent

Lahore(Staff Reporter): The Islamic Division of UBL Fund Managers Limited (UBL Funds), Al-Ameen Funds, has posted a remarkable growth of 530% in the last three calendar years. Al-Ameen Funds now stands as comprising the second highest market share on a cumulative basis in the Islamic Funds category in Pakistan, showing particularly impressive growth in equity funds. Leaping from Rs. 5.1bn to Rs. 32.5bn in just 36 months, Al-Ameen Funds served as the major contributor to UBL Funds’ overall growth. The rapid increase was noted due to the common interest of majority of investors. Investors may draw comfort from the fact that Funds falling under the realm of Shariah-compliant funds are superior to conventional funds.

because the underlying debt instruments are structurally less risky than conventional debt instrument. Furthermore, the borrowing levels are lower and dividend yields are higher with Shariah-compliance stocks, which may provide extra comfort to investors of Al-Ameen Funds that fall into the Shariah-compliant equity category. This is also one of the main reasons that Islamic financial institutions were in much better shape compared to the conventional financial institutions during the global financial crisis of 2008-09.

Ufone launches UWatch

Lahore(Staff Reporter): Ufone is primed to launch a first of its kind product that will bring parents some much needed peace of mind – the UWatch. UWatch keeps families connected in the way they want to be without the need to buy a young child a smartphone. UWatch is a wearable mobile watch designed specifically for kids in order for parents to keep in touch with their loved ones. This watch provides two way voice calling functionality i.e. the parent can dial into the watch and also the child can dial from the watch to the parent’s mobile number. Additionally UWatch also provides real-time location capability via GSM/GPS positioning so that parents can be aware of their child’s location.

UWatch is securely controlled by the parents using the UWatch app through a smartphone supporting both Android and IOS platforms. Through the app, parents can stay connected with their children throughout the day, right from their own mobile device. Whether it’s checking to see that your child has made it home safely from school or calling to let your child know you’re running a few minutes late, the app delivers the connection and peace of mind that every parent desires.