Economic indicators show positive growth in first half

ISLAMABAD (APP): Despite several challenges, the macroeconomic stability has been achieved and now the economy is on trajectory path as suggested by many economic indicators. According to official sources, foreign reserves is one of the main indicators and the total liquid reserves held by the country stood at $23,163.6m as on Dec 30. The foreign reserves held by the Sbp stood at $18,268.9m while the net foreign reserves held by commercial banks were recorded at $4,894.7million. The performance of FBR remained around 7pc for the six month period ended in Dec 2016. "This reflects catching up of the shortfall experienced in the initial months, largely on account of giving relief to consumers on petroleum prices together with sales tax refunds of Rs45b," sources added.On the expenditure side, the performance was on track as expenditure was allowed in a prudent manner in accordance with budget, and keeping in view the revenue growth, they added. The sources said that the GDP growth also appears to be on upward trajectory.

PTA to announce Mobile App Awards’ winners by end of Jan

ISLAMABAD (APP): Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) would announce winners of Mobile App Awards for which developers prepared mobile applications to help disabled persons in performing necessary functions of everyday life with help of mobile phones. The PTA is set to announce winners of the App Awards as finale of app award competition is scheduled to be held during last week of this month. PTA and Internet Society (ISOC) Asia-Pacific Bureau had initiated "Pakistan Mobile App Awards-2016" in collaboration with Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications, Telenor & Special Talent Exchange Programme (STEP). As per details, this year's competition theme was "Embracing Mobile Accessibility" that aimed to focus on development of mobile applications on needs of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in Pakistan. The 2016, Mobile App Awards has been invited to harness benefits of technology to promote digital inclusion, and embrace persons with disabilities.

The application submission deadline was August 25, 2016.



Exports witness 3.82pc decrease in six months

ISLAMABAD (APP): The exports from the country during July-December 2016-17 were recorded at $9.912 billion compared to the exports of $10.306 billion, showing decrease of 3.82 percent.The imports into the country were recorded at $24.402 billion during the first half of the current fiscal year compared to the imports of $22.162 billion, showing an increase of 10.11 percent. Based on the figures, the trade deficit during July-December (2016-17) was recorded at $14.490 billion compared to the deficit of $11.856 billion recorded during the same period of last year, showing 22.22 percent increase in deficit.

Meanwhile, on year-on-year basis, the exports from the country decreased by 3.09 percent during December 2016. The exports during December 2016 were recorded at $1.727 billion compared to the exports of $1.782 billion during December 2015. The imports into the country during the month under review were recorded at $4.488 percent, as against the imports of $3.817b during last Dec, showing positive growth of 17.5pc.

ICST expresses concern over fall in leather exports

ISLAMABAD (INP): Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders (ICST) on Monday expressed concern over falling production and dwindling exports of the leather sector and called for steps to revive it. Once vibrant leather sector is sailing in troubled waters and its exports for the year 2015-16 fell by 12.35 percent on the back of rising cost of production despite GSP status, it said. India and China are grabbing Pakistan’s share in the international market which is causing concern, said Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders Patron Shahid Rasheed Butt. He said that fall of leather sector is also hurting jobs and revenue therefore the government should consider incentives for it as it is providing jobs to four hundred thousand people. He said that India is exporting leather goods worth $4 billion while Chinese exports stood at $3.22 billion. Reason behind booming exports by neighbouring countries is said to be their taxation and refund structure which is encouraging, he said.