Engineering goods' exports up by 18pc

ISLAMABAD (APP): Exports of engineering goods during the year 2017-18 had registered 18.30pc growth as compared to the exports of the corresponding period of last year. Engineering goods worth $ 206.07m exported during the period from July-June, 2017-18 as compared the exports of $ 178.19m of same period last year, according latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. During the period under review, Electric fans export however registered a negative growth of 9.84 percent as it went down to $26.19m from $29.05m in same period of the preceding year. Similarly export of transport equipments also posted a decline of 7.73 percent to $8.67 million in July-June (2017-18) from $9.4 million in same period of the year 2016-17. The export of other electric machinery surged by 36.35 percent as its export during Jul-Jun (2017-18) recorded at $45 million against the export worth of $33.009 million during same period of the preceding year. The export of machinery specialized for particular industries also witnessed a sharp increase of 83.48 percent to $45.33 million from $24.7 million in Jul-Jun (2016-17).

Auto parts and accessories' export increased to $16.9 million in the year 2017-18 against the export worth $13.5 million in same period of the year 2016-17 thus posting an increase of 24.5 percent.

Mandviwalla for inking FTA with Egypt

ISLAMABAD(APP): Senate Deputy Chairman Senator Saleem Mandviwalla Thursday stressed upon the need of inking a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Egypt and Pakistan. Talking to Egyptian Ambassador Ahmed Mohamed Fadel Yacoub, he observed that as a first step a Preferential Trade Agreement can be reached which can be gradually transformed into FTA to enhance the trade volume between the two countries. The Egyptian Ambassador called on Deputy Chairman Senate here in his chamber at the Parliament House. Both sides expressed hope that the economic and commercial cooperation between the two countries will increase in the coming times and the trade balance will be improved, said a press release. He remarked that both in areas like textile industry there is a lot that can be learned and improved on the basis of experience sharing. The Deputy Chairman observed that Visa facilitation process should be further simplified and direct flights between the two counties should be resumed.

Senator Saleem Mandviwalla extended an invitation for the Speaker of the Egyptian House of Representatives to visit the Parliament of Pakistan and expressed hope to have more Parliamentary exchanges between the two countries.

Mango festival in Gilgit planned

ISLAMABAD (APP): Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) would organize Mango festival in Gilgit by first week of September and will invite international organizations for promotion and value addition of these products. "We are committed to promote and branding of local fruits from Gilgit Baltistan, Swat and Azad Jammu and Kashmir and value addition for the facilitation of growers and traders," senior official of the ministry told APP here on Thursday. The priorities of TDAP were the value addition and enhancement of value supply chain for the promotion of agriculture trade and exports of the country, he said. "We would initiate the project of establishing cold storage in Gilgit Baltistan for prolong preservation and to enhance the shelf life of apricot, peaches and persimmon," he said. Replying to a question, he said the ministry has a plan to create international level institute for innovation and value addition of leather and gems and jewelry in the country.

"We are working to explore new trade avenues and markets in different regions," he added.

The government was committed in providing direction and diversification to internal trade for improving supply chains vital for enhancing the country's exports.

He said that the ministry was contributing to the national economy through trade facilitation and liberalization, improved export competitiveness and by reducing the cost of doing business.

The official said that TDAP was working with international organizations including Japan

International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Center for the Promotion of Imports (CPI) in developing countries for branding and enhancing the value addition in agro-trade in these areas.

Replying to another question, he said that the ministry was going to set up a research center in collaboration with UNIDO for training and enhancing the capacity of staff.

The government was committed for enhancing foreign trade; the government was committed to improve the standards according to the international market.

IIUI, IDB agree to deepen cooperation

ISLAMABAD (APP): Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and international Islamic University Islamabad (IIUI) on Thursday agreed to deepen and further strengthen the bilateral cooperation and expand the ventures through science and technology funds of the Bank. The decision was taken during a visit of IDB delegation consisting of six members to the Islamic International University in which both sides agreed to enhance the cooperation, a press release said. In new campus, during a briefing headed by the IIUI Rector Dr. Masoom Yasinzai the delegation was apprised about the latest state of the art facilities at the Centre for Centre for Advanced Electronics & Photovoltaic Engineering (CAEPE) built with funding of IDB. The meeting also discussed partnership through center, recommendations and also reviewed challenges such as sustainability of the center and resources. Delegation was briefed by Engineer Muhammad Shoaib regarding commercialization of the center and its usage across the country through Higher Education Commission.

It was also told that researchers, MS and PhD scholars were conducting their projects and were also working on their patents. Delegation was briefed about metrology grade spectroscopic ellipso-meter, electro physical process reliability and such other machines.

Field representative of IDB, Inam ulllah Khan told the meeting that bank was referring Photovoltaic Engineering projects of the member countries to IIUI's centre for exchange of expertise and utilization of the resource through generalized institutionalization.

He added that IDB was also working with HEC to assist Pakistani organizations in agriculture and information technology. The meeting also discussed bilateral cooperation and assistance of the university through science and technology IDB fund.

IIUI Rector hailed IDB for generous cooperation and assured that the centre will be open for Muslim world's students to progress. He reiterated his resolve that IIUI will keep working to remain relevant to the societal needs and the centre was a prominent example.

The delegation also called on IIUI President Dr Ahmed Yoysif Al-Draiweesh where he briefed about IIUI vision.

He said that IIUI strives to make available all modern resources such as Photovoltaic Engineering so that Muslim youth don't remain dependent on rest of the world.

Later, the delegation visited the center and appreciated the facilities and stat of the arts machines and launched products at the centre.

The delegation and IIUI administration lauded Dr. Ahmed Shuja Syed, Executive Director of the centre for creating knowledge and developing the cross-disciplinary market-driven research focused on the applications of Advanced Electronics & Photovoltaic Engineering via materials, processes, components and systems for the convergence of energy, photonic and nano-scale electronics technology avenues or platforms.