09292016Thu
Last update: Thu, 29 Sep 2016 04am

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While a much larger discussion on GSP plus is crucial given how fast exports are coming down, and how concentrated Pakistani exports remain in a rapidly changing world of value added and innovated goods; the immediate concern for Pakistan at this point is UKs exit from the European Union bloc that invoked the very credible fears amongst exporters here at home that GSP plus concessions may no longer apply to Pakistan's exports to the UK. A Pakistani delegation is now visiting Britain to determine what kind of concessions Pakistan can expect from the UK post brexit.
Who can find fault with local tourists flocking to tourist spots up north and having a good time? After all, Pakistan feels safer than it did some two years ago. Thanks to low inflation, the middle-class has more money in the pocket. Many access roads, hitherto excruciating to drive on, are better paved, and now ply more vehicles on them. Yet, as everything seems to be coming together, something does not seem right.
Never a lull moment in the coverage of the marathon that is US presidential elections! But what is about to come will make the current coverage seem like dull days. On September 26, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will face off in the first of the three presidential debates. Some American commentators are already billing the showdown as potentially the most-watched event in television history.
Give Ahsan Iqbal a break! Recently, the Planning & Development Minister reportedly said, "Government will soon be launching the fifth generation (5G) cellular services." Some folks in tech circles and media took offence at the statement. In doing so, critics revealed they don't have much experience listening to the Professor's conference speeches. His talking points often paint a future that seems too good to be true.
Auto sales that had seen a drop of 12 percent between June and July have rebounded in August- thanks to a 25 percent bump in passenger cars and jeeps between July and August and more working days in August compared to the prior month. Data reported by PAMA shows total sales in the auto sector for August seeing a 29 percent increase month-on-month, selling 20,759 units compared to 16,073 units in July. On a year-on-year however, 2MFY17 saw a 10 percent drop in sales versus 2MFY16, selling about 4,000 units less. (Read July's coverage "Autos: Slow start to FY17", published on August 12, 2016).
Motorists around the world have another reason to rejoice as the latest from the global oil market suggests, prices are in no hurry to come down. Pessimism seems to have taken over even the most historically optimistic voices in the energy market - such as the International Energy Agency (IEA). The energy body is closely watched entity and has more often than not erred on the bearish side, when it comes to oil prices.
Increased economic activity and heightened car sales have been shaping petroleum consumption in the country. The August numbers by Oil Companies Advisory Council show that the total sales of petroleum products by the OMCs touched 2.3 million tons, up 21 percent year-on-year.