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Its not a good time for Pakistan on international ranking charts. Now the country is ranked as the second least-efficient country on the Economist Intelligence Unit's Creative Productivity Index (compiled for the ADB). Among the 24 Asian economies covered, Pakistan is ranked 23rd when it comes to measuring efficiency in converting inputs to outputs.
When the Chief Minister of Punjab, who likes to call himself Khadim-e-Aala, was asked a short-while ago whether it made more sense to spend Rs200 billion on education than Metro Bus Projects, he was quick to respond "if there is no transport, how will pupils reach schools?" And we are not even making it up! There are priorities, and then there is PML-N. So very little surprise then the Petroleum Minister, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, was elated informing how the imported LNG will be used solely for the transport sector.
Education is indeed an investment. A recent World Bank policy paper, "Comparable Estimates of Returns to Schooling around the World" has some interesting insights about the interplay between schooling and earnings. Using 819 household surveys from 139 countries in the period 1980-2013, private rates of schooling returns, of the monetary nature, are examined for salaried employees.
Yet another adverse impact of the ongoing political sit-ins in Islamabad has been seen on the energy sales. Energy volumes witnessed a drop in sales of eight percent in August 2014 versus July 2014, which primarily stemmed from a month-on-month retreat in volumes of major petroleum products.
A skyrocketing increase in annual taxation charges put a drag on net earnings for the Maple Leaf Cement Factory Limited (KSE: MLCF) this year, despite the top line increase. While selling and distribution costs have experienced a significant 32 percent increase year on year, sales growth across the cement sector is also attributed to the increase in cement prices witnessed during last year.
The 2014 UNDP Global Human Development Report is being launched in Islamabad today. And it seems the authors couldn't have chosen a more befitting theme in the context of Pakistan's ongoing political state of affairs.
Starts are aligning for DG. With investments planned other than its own plant expansion, DG Khan Cement (KSE: DGKC) has managed to pull off a decent year, posting 12 percent increase in net earnings, along with a cash dividend of Rs3.5 per share.

 



 
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Annual2013/14
Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
MonthlyAugust
Trade Balance $-2.807 bln
Exports $1.911 bln
Imports $4.718 bln
WeeklySeptember 25, 2014
Reserves $13.305 bln