Call to construct big dams to save water

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): The All Parties Conference, organised by Pakistan Muttahida Kisan Mahaz, has expressed grave concern over the prolonged Indian water aggression, saying that India is violating the Indus Basin Water Agreement by stopping the water in River Chenab towards Pakistan since 2008. The moot was attended by JI secretary general Liaqat Baloch, leader of banned outfit Jamatul Dahwa Hafiz Abdul Rahman Makki, Manzoor Wattoo, PML-N Functional senator Muhammad Ali Durrani, Ayyub Mayo and opposition leader in Punjab Assembly Mehmoodur Rashid. The participants of the conference said it was regrettable that the country’s rulers have not raised the water issue in dialogue with the Indian foreign secretary. They alleged that the country’s rulers are strengthening Indian stance on the water issue. They said millions of acres of agricultural land would turn into desert if Indian water aggression was not stopped. The speakers said that India has already waged water war against Pakistan by stopping water towards the Pakistan.

They said that India has already established 262 small and big dams, while Pakistan still have only two main dams. They stressed the need for early construction of more big dams in Pakistan to save the floodwater.

They claimed that the Indian water aggression was only because of the poor counter strategy by Pakistan. They said that the water level has dropped to a great extent in River Chenab. They revealed that the farmers along the banks of River Chenab were much perturbed due to water shortage.

SECP seeks comments on draft regulations

ISLAMABAD (Staff Reporter): The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), moving ahead with implementation of the recently promulgated Futures Market Act, 2016, has formulated draft Futures Exchanges (Licensing & Operations) Regulations, 2017. The salient features of the draft regulations are application of fit and proper criteria to the majority shareholders and directors and senior management officers, application of a code of conduct to the board of directors and senior management officers and financial resource requirement of minimum paid-up capital (net of losses) of Rs500 million, with the condition that an existing futures exchange shall have three years to meet this threshold. In addition, the regulations require composition of board of directors, appointment of chief executive officer with the approval of the SECP, constitution of risk committee and appointment of chief risk officer. The draft regulations have been published in the official gazette and placed on the website of SECP (www.secp.gov.pk) for public consultation purposes.

The stakeholders may submit their comments by April 21, 2017.

Census vital for effective

socio-economic policies: PIAF

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): The business community on Thursday condemned the terrorist attack on census team, saying they fully support the government and armed forces to carry on census across the country. Pakistan Industrial and Traders Associations Front Chairman Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said that census was pivotal in shaping effective socio-economic and development policies. He said the policymakers had been driving the economy by looking back, using a 19-year-old rear-view mirror of 1998 census data. Billions of dollars thus wasted could have been saved if the policymakers had not blindly chased the policies for almost two decades on unproductive expenditure based on guesstimates, he added. In a joint statement, along with Senior Vice Chairman Tanveer Ahmed Sufi and Vice Chairman Shahzeb Akram, he stated that the incident was conspiracy against Pakistan. It is responsibility of all stakeholders to devise a mechanism to secure the nation's future and prevent terrorists from executing their nefarious designs.

Sheikh said such acts of terrorism has also taken heavy toll on business and investment activities in the country, therefore, a comprehensive solution to the issue was required to put economy on track of sustainable growth.

The PIAF chairman said that this nation has been waiting for census since 2008. The sixth national census was due in 2008 but it was postponed till 2010, he added. He said the census will bring revolutionary changes in the political and economic atmosphere.

LPGAP urges govt to curb LPG import through land route

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): The LPG Association of Pakistan (LPGAP) has urged the government to take urgent measures to curb import and smuggling of LPG in the country through land route of Taftan and Mand as it is badly affecting the local LPG producers. The demand was raised at an emergent meeting of LPGAP. LPGAP members stressed the need for taking immediate measures by the authorities to address the issue. The LPGAP chairman said that import and smuggling of LPG is not only affecting sale of local LPG, but is also creating severe environmental and health issues. He said that Minister of Petroleum & Ministry of Finance should take serious notice of import of LPG through land route as it was also causing financial loss to national exchequer. The LPGAP chairman said that some unscrupulous importers are selling this cheap LPG to unregistered players who besides playing with the lives of the masses, and wasting valuable foreign exchange also cause substantial revenue loss to the government.

Substantial Import of LPG through land routes has taken place because of the government’s slackness to match price of the local product in light of huge fall in CP price of LPG promptly, he added. “However, we thank the government for reducing its prices recently, but it must reduce price further by another Rs5,000 per MT to discourage low quality imports,” he added.