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Net loans to private sector businesses were in the negative in 2MFY15. But that doesn’t necessarily spell doom. If anything, a closer look at credit data (net of retirement) shows that the fears of falling private sector credit supply weren’t visible till the end of August 2014.
Regardless of what their fate turns out to be, the recent political frenzy seems to have jolted the government, which now seems to be more aggressive in following up on its earlier commitments. Last week, the Finance minister Ishaq Dar approved the constitution of the “Tax Reforms Commission” (TRC) as was committed in his budget speech for FY15.
The political climate that consumed much of 1QFY15 was bound to hit the public sector development programme (PSDP). Planning Commission data indicate that only 10 percent of the Rs525 billion FY15 federal PSDP had been released as of September 26. That’s half of the 20 percent ceiling for the Jul-Sep quarter, and may have only marginally improved in the remaining two working days in the quarter.
One of the major food groups of Pakistan, Engro foods (KSE: EFOODS), had a major announcement last week. Its company secretary announced that, “Engro Foods Netherlands B.V., fully owned subsidiary of Engro Foods has entered into a share purchase agreement for the sale of its North American Business which includes Engro Foods Canada Limited.” As a result, EFOODS closed down 5 percent on its corresponding lower price limit after the announcement of its exodus from its Canadian-based meat business. The transaction shall complete around 31st October, 2014. The management is mum about the value of the business undergoing sale.
Only a couple of months ago, the environment seemed all set for Oil and Gas Government Development Company Limited (OGDC); the much needed privitisation plans took off well with the successful secondary public offering of UBL and PPL, setting the stage for OGDC’s global depository receipts (GDRs) issue.
While the delay in IMFs fourth review has less to with the governments delaying the earlier agreed upon power tariff increase, it may well have a bearing on the final outcome. In pure economic sense, increasing the power tariff is direly needed. It is because the cost of generation continues to be higher than the units sold. And also, the circular debt has continued to mount despite some efforts.
Export receipts for 2MFY15 slid by about $460 million year-on-year. That may be negative, but not necessarily disconcerting. What is confusing, instead, is the reason behind that decline.
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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.807 bln
Exports $1.911 bln
Imports $4.718 bln
WeeklySeptember 25, 2014
Reserves $13.305 bln