War on water resources seems inescapable: PEW

ISLAMABAD (Online): The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Sunday said water scarcity is to transform Pakistan into a totally failed state within a decade. War between Pakistan and India on the issue of water resources seems inevitable as serious efforts by Islamabad to increase trade between the two countries has not helped New Delhi to change its policy of water aggression, said Dr Murtaza Mughal, President PEW. Speaking at a seminar on World Water Day, he said that according Most Favoured Nation status to India may not change its decades-old policy to make Pakistan infertile.

 The issue of water aggression cannot be resolved through enhanced trade or negotiations as India may not like to settle the dispute except a full scale armed conflict with global implications, he observed.

Dr Murtaza Mughal said that all the civilian and military governments of Pakistan have failed to ensure water security or advocate India to change its long-term policy of destroying Pakistan through water hostilities.

India will continue to build dams violating Indus Water Treaty while majority of international forums would continue to support New Delhi which has left Pakistan with little options, he said.

29 wind power projects at different stages of implementation

ISLAMABAD (APP): The government is in process of implementing around 29 different wind power projects as per its plan to enhance power production in the country. Among these projects, two wind power projects with capacity of 106.4 MW have achieved commercial operation and are supplying electricity to national grid. Besides, three projects, having a cumulative capacity of 150 MW, have achieved financial close and are under construction. These projects are expected to achieve COD during this year. According to the Ministry of Water and Power sources, six wind power projects with a cumulative capacity of 330MW are close to achieving Project Financial Closing.

 The expected COD dates for these projects are in 2015.

Additionally, 11 wind power projects with a cumulative capacity of 550 MW may also achieve COD by second quarter of 2016, provided the tariff is made available timely while 12 wind power projects with cumulative capacity of 789 MW are at different stages of implementation.

Consignment of 23 locomotives to arrive today

ISLAMABAD(APP): The first consignment of 23 locomotives from China will arrive on Monday 24 for use in freight operations. According to a Pakistan Railways official, the freight train operations will be increased gradually. He said that by the end of this year, at least six freight trains would be made operational which would help generate revenue of Rs 20 to 25 million per day.  At present, three to four freight trains are being operated on daily basis, which have increased revenue, he added. He said the entire fleet of locomotives had outlived their utility and the older locomotives needed to be replaced with new ones as soon as possible.

On the directive of Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique, he said all-out efforts were being made to ensure timely arrival and departure of trains and make Pakistan Railways a profitable organization.

He added that dedication and hard work was required to steer the department out of challenges.

Private investment would be welcomed where it was needed and it would be done through a transparent method, he added.

The official said steps were being taken to utilize the Railways land in most efficient way.

He said the department was also going for computerizing data of its lands.

RCCI announces March 31 last date for membership renewal

RAWALPINDI (APP): The last date of Rawalpindi Cahmber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) membership renewal is March 31 and all the entrepreneurs registered with the body have been urged to renew their membership by the end of March. According to Acting President RCCI Malik Shahid Saleem membership of those associates not meeting the deadline would be cancelled under rules of the Ministry of Commerce. Highlighting importance of unity, Malik Shahid said, renewal of membership and increased number of registered entrepreneurs would make the body more effective and vibrant.

He said a membership drive would be initiated to make new members, adding that each trade paying tax was eligible to become member of the chamber.

Declaring trade bodies as strength of the chamber, he said

RCCI was making all-out efforts to resolve problems being faced by business community on priority and taking measures for their welfare.

Malik said RCCI has signed contracts with various hospitals,laboratories, universities and business centers of the twin cities for benefit of it members.

Govt taking steps to overcome energy crisis

SHEIKHUPURA (APP): Federal Minister for Defence Production Rana Tanvir Hussain said on Sunday the incumbent government had taken revolutionary steps to overcome energy crisis, eradication of terrorism and restoration of national economy.  Addressing a gathering to mark the Pakistan Day here at district council hall, he said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was playing a role of statesman and doing working hard day and night for the betterment and welfare of nation without any discrimination.  He said the government was taking steps to pass on the fruits of democracy to the masses through its good performance.

He said the nation would never forgive us, if we did not play a significant role for the development of the country, he added.

Later, the minister laid a floral wreath on the monuments of police martyred.