APBF meets US envoy to seek trade development

ISLAMABAD (INP): Senior office-bearers of the ‘All Pakistan Business Forum’ (APBF) called on the American Ambassador in Pakistan, David Hale, on Tuesday. APBF President Ibrahim Qureshi on the occasion paid rich tributes to Hale and the government of USA. He praised the ambassador for rendering outstanding services for strengthening the friendly relations between Pakistan and the USA. He stated, “It is a privilege for the APBF to work with a seasoned envoy like Hale. These cohesive endeavours have enabled valuable development initiatives, while attracting more foreign investments to Pakistan.” The meeting was focused on taking effective measures for increasing bilateral trade and collaborative development programmes between the two countries. Suggestions were given to identify new untapped sectors in trade and industry to nurture productive business ventures and accelerate growth. The delegation comprised of APBF Chairman Khalid Rafique, Secy Gen of APBF Syed Maaz Mahmood and other prominent members like Aamir Barry and Asif (Tipu).

The US envoy appreciated the support provided by the business community of Pakistan as well as the government.

He said, “The APBF members are action-oriented entrepreneurs. Their expertise and diligence helps the friends of Pakistan to identify the most potent sectors in Pakistan, to achieve global prosperity and alleviate poverty in the region besides enriching Pakistan’s image as a positive contributor to the global economy.”

 1410MW Tarbela extension project to start power generation in 2017

GHAZI (APP): About 67 percent civil work of Tarbela Dam's fourth extension project has been completed and would start power generation during 2017 instead of 2018. According to the Tarbela Dam officials, the project was initially designed to complete during the year 2018, but on the special directives of Prime Minister Muahammad Nawaz Sharif now it would be completed in 2017. The fourth extension project would increase the existing capacity of 3,478 MW to 4,888 MW after the installation of three units of 1,410MW on Tunnel No. 4. The World Bank has provided 840 million dollars while Wapda has arranged 80 million dollars internally to complete the extension project. Extended hydropower project would add about 3.84 billion units of low-cost electricity to the national grid and directly benefit the masses. The entire cost of the project would be recovered within three years as the expected annual benefits of the project are more than Rs 30.7 billion.

 PPAF summer internship programme awards ceremony held

ISLAMABAD (PR): A batch of 18 graduates and under-graduates studying at various universities across Pakistan were awarded certificates at the closing ceremony of the PPAF Summer Internship Programme. The ten-day long programme enabled interns to gain insight into dynamics of the development sector with focus on PPAF working model. The internship programme was delivered in two phases comprising of in-house training sessions and field visits. The interns visited PPAF-supported interventions in Multan, Muzaffargarh,Abbottabad and Haripur where they learnt about implementation strategies, impact and sustainability of different projects including institutional development, livelihood, education, community infrastructure and micro-credit interventions. They also met with community members who had availed these services. Qazi Azmat Isa, CEO, PPAF appreciated the passion and commitment of young interns in making their presentation and understanding the work of PPAF being carried out across the country.

He urged these young minds to continue their relationship with communities and appreciate their struggle for livelihood in difficult terrains and conditions. He also requested these interns to play their role as ambassadors of PPAF and highlight the development work and share it with other people.

Dr Shahida Jaffrey, Educationist and Development Professional, was the guest speaker at the ceremony. She said, “Investing in youth is like creating little islands that will help in bringing change in the society”. She appreciated PPAF role in providing opportunity to youth to understand the development work and its challenges.

 Loans worth Rs7b given under Prime Minister’s Youth Loan Scheme

Bahawalpur (Staff Reporter): The National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) has disbursed loans amounting to Rs7 billion to 7,000 applicants under the Prime Minister Youth Loan Scheme. This was disclosed by NBP Bahawalpur Region’s Head Muhammad Younis at a ceremony held here on Tuesday to mark the start of Consumer Week, which will conclude on August 26. He said that more than 1,400 online NBP branches were operational in Pakistan, while it also had branches in 20 countries of the world. “Foreign rating agencies have given the bank ‘AAA’ category, while it also bagged ‘Bank of the Year Award’ in 2015,” he informed. Elaborating further, the Region’s Head said that around 350,000 government employees were benefitting from Advance Salary Loan Scheme of the bank, while 270,000 farmers had borrowed loans under the bank’s Agriculture Loan Scheme. “Similarly, the bank has 1,000 ATM machines to cater for the requirements 1,480,000 ATM card holders,” he added.

On the occasion, Regional Manager Business and Development Malik Dawood said that NBP’s slogan was ‘Zindgi kay her lamhay main ap kay Sath'.

“For this purpose, we have introduced schemes for everyone on individual bases,” he said, and added, “Industrialists and farmers from Bahawalpur region have borrowed 40 percent of the loans out of the total loans disbursed by the bank.”

He further said, “We distributed Rs1.2 billion among 1,400 applicants under the PYBL scheme. NBP also gives interest-free loans to graduate and post graduate level students.”

In the end, senior citizens and oldest account holders of the bank cut the cake.