02132016Sat
Last update: Sat, 13 Feb 2016 09am

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The Thal Industries Corporation Limited (TICL) has started the new financial year on a negative note. The Company's net sale has declined quite significantly by 34 percent year-over-year. The lack of top line growth has put ample pressure on the bottom line of the Company, which has come down to 93 percent year-on-year.
The state of Pakistan's healthcare should not be a secret to anyone by now. The picture of healthcare policies becomes more pathetic when it comes to the matter of childbirth in the nation. In a recent report, out of 186 countries; Pakistani mothers have the highest rate of stillbirths. This finding has cast serious doubts on the recent claims by federal and provincial governments that maternal health has improved over the past few years.
Telecom observers have long been pointing out that telecom taxes are too high in Pakistan compared to countries with similar level of development. This column has been part of that chorus. Policy needle has not moved much, however now it’s the central bank’s turn to have a go at it. Well, good luck. But it’s encouraging to have SBP discuss this issue in some length in its latest report on the state of economy.
After thirty-seven years of economic isolation, Iran is back into the global community. Although, there are few sanctions remain in place, but primarily Iran moved on from crippling days of sanctions, and it is open for business. Arguably, it was a rare moment in international diplomacy when prolonged negotiation between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) took place in July 2015, and both sides successfully came to a conclusion.
Pakistan's leading sugar mill, JDW gave a meek performance for its first quarter; although net sales (after federal excise duty, sales tax and other) have shot up by 50 percent year-over-year, this did not translate into any bottom line gains as gross profits were flat year-on-year.
Ferozsons seems to have become a success story in Pakistan?s ailing pharma industry. For the half year ended FY16, the company?s top line has more than tripled year-on-year, while net profit is five times what it was a year ago! The firm has announced a dividend of Rs10 per share.
There was much excitement in Karachi last week. Headed by the Chinese “miracle-maker” Mr. Sha Zukang, the China-Pakistan Friendship Association (CPFA) brought a delegation of nearly 100 Chinese companies to the coast on Thursday, which was their last leg of their trip across the eastern belt of Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi.