PM meeting with heads of international organizations- “Pakistan set on track of sustainable growth and ready to do business with the world”-PM

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has invited global entrepreneurs to invest in Pakistan and take advantage of its strategic location, rich human and material resources, political stability and attractive investment policy. He was addressing corporate and business leaders from around the world in Islamabad on Thursday. Pakistan with its sixth largest population in the world, eighty million middle class and attractive investment environment is a destination no global player can miss. Pakistan is set on track for Sustainable growth and was ready to do business with the world The Prime Minister invited them to take benefit from the economic revival of Pakistan and enjoy the first mover's advantage
CPEC is a key regional initiative for connectivity and shared prosperity of nations. Apart from energy, road and rail infrastructure, industrial parks and economic zones and a state of the art Deep Sea Port at Gwadar gives CPEC the potential of changing the destiny of the people in the region and beyond. The corridor will substantially shorten transportation distances between Africa and Middle East to Central and South Asian regions. CPEC would connect the port of Gwadar to Kashghar.

Govt to spend Rs7b on environment protection during next 5 years: zahid

Minister for Climate Change Zahid Hamid says about seven billion rupees will be spent for plantation and environment protection during the next five years. Briefing newsmen about Green Pakistan initiative in Islamabad on Thursday, he said Federal and Provincial Governments will share the cost on fifty-fifty basis. The Minister said apart from tree plantation, the programme envisages wildlife conservation and surveys of zoological gardens. He said the Prime Minister has announced that 9th of February every year will be observed as National Green Day. Zahid Hamid said for the first time, local species are being planted in different areas as per needs and requirements of the regions. These include plantation of mangroves on coastal belts of Sindh and Balochistan. He said more than one hundred universities are also taking part in the plantation campaign.
Pakistan is determined to bring lasting peace in Afghanistan and supports all steps taken in this direction- FO

In a weekly briefing Nafees zakriya said:

Pakistan is determined to bring lasting peace in Afghanistan and supports all steps taken in this direction, the FO spokesman said. He said the same commitment had been expressed at the Heart of Asia conference in Amritsar last year. Pakistan condemns in strongest terms the killing of six Afghan employees of the Red Cross in northern Afghanistan

Trump slams the courts, and his court nominee hits back

President Donald Trump's criticism of the judiciary prompted a rebuke from his nominee for the Supreme Court, who told a senator the president's comments were "demoralizing and disheartening."
Judge Neil Gorsuch, who was nominated by Trump to the nation's high court last week, made the comments Wednesday after Trump accused an appellate court considering his immigration and refugee executive order of being "so political." Over the weekend, the president labeled a judge who ruled on his executive order a "so-called judge" and referred to the ruling as "ridiculous."

Trump reaches out to China’s president in a letter

The letter wishing China a “prosperous Year of the Rooster” came 11 days after China celebrated its Lunar New Year’s festival. President Trump has yet to speak to Xi Jinping since his inauguration, even though he has spoken directly He is now in contact, and promising a “constructive relationship” between the world’s two most powerful nations. Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang at a daily press briefing on Thursday said that it is willing to work with the United States in adhering to the principles of non-confrontation and mutual benefit to promote cooperation and control disputes.

US Senate approves Jeff Sessions as attorney general 

Trump's choice, Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, confirmed after accusations of racism and strong resistance. The US Senate has confirmed Senator Jeff Sessions as attorney general despite fierce debate over his civil rights record and a push by Democrats to block him.
President Donald Trump's choice was given the greenlight on Wednesday by a vote of 52-47.
Sessions had faced accusations of racism, and a Senate panel rejected him for a federal judgeship in 1986 amid concerns over allegedly racist comments he had made. "This caricature of me from 1986 was not correct," Sessions said after his confirmation hearing last month.

Trump lawyer proposes travel ban compromise in appeals court

The fate of Donald Trump's migrant crackdown was being decided on Tuesday night, after a rapid-fire, phone-hook-up court hearing, during which the much of the skepticism from the three-judge panel was directed at the lawyers attempting to defend the President's controversial executive order. Speaking for Trump, Justice Department lawyer August Flentje insisted that the executive order that restricts entry to the US by migrants and refuges from seven Muslim-majority countries was "well within the President's power as delegated to him by Congress," and that the President had determined there was a "real risk" in not halting travel to the US from those countries.

Brexit four times worse for UK economy than previously thought, say MIT economists 

New research claims leaving the EU will have bigger impact on UK productivity than had been thought Britain’s departure from the European Union could cause output losses of as much as 9.5 per cent, according to new research. Calculations using models that incorporate productivity measures show a negative impact on gross domestic product per capita of almost four times that of previous estimates, according to John Van Reenen, a professor of applied economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management who supported the campaign for the UK to remain in the EU.

Forget India, profit from ‘quiet rise’ of Pakistan: Barron’s Asia 

Forget India. Investors looking for the next big thing should look to its South Asia neighbors instead – Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. With a combined 390 million people, the three countries represent what Morgan Stanley chief global strategist Ruchir Sharma calls “the quiet rise of South Asia” as opposed to India which has been “flattered by spasms of hype for years”. Pakistan is the flag bearer of the positive changes taking place in the South Asian nations. Chinese investment has also poured in: $50 billion will be spent on new roads, transport links and energy projects

Russian airstrike kills 3 Turkish soldiers in Syria

Turkey's military says three soldiers were killed in northern Syria in an "accidental" airstrike by a Russian warplane. The military says 11 other soldiers were wounded in the friendly fire incident on Thursday. The Turkish soldiers were inside a building that was hit by a Russian aircraft, according to a military statement. The statement said Russia expressed its sorrow and condolences for the incident while President Vladimir Putin called President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Mattis telephonic conversation with Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa- The US Defense Secretary commended the sacrifices and resilience of the people and armed forces of Pakistan in the war against terrorism

Analysts on Telephone:

Ahsan Iqbal

Pakistan's economic profile has significantly approved due to government policies and is being acknowledged by world financial circles. Pakistan is swiftly becoming an emerging market that has lot of potential for global investors. Due to the steps taken by the government to overcome power shortage, around ten thousand MW of electricity will be added into national grid by next year. The improved security environment coupled with liberal economic policies has put Pakistan on world map as an attractive destination. Out of 200 million Pakistanis, around 80 million are under the category of middle class. Pakistan enjoys a unique geostrategic position as it lies at the crossroad of South and Central Asia, Middle East and China. A Dutch company has invested 440 million dollars in the country. Renault Company of France is going to establish a car plant in Pakistan in near future. Today a diverse group of foreign investors visited Pakistan which also had a number of CEOs of various international companies. The group expressed keen interest to invest in agriculture, telecommunication and other sectors of the economy. We need to keep the momentum to make Pakistan an Asian Tiger in next decade. The government is giving special attention to skill development of youth to harness their potential and take advantage of employment opportunities. Under the US Pakistan Knowledge Corridor, 10,000 Phds will get education in top US universities. And inside the country, various technical education programs are enhancing the skills of youth in different trades.

Dr. Ghulam Mustafa (Expert on Afghan Affairs)

It is the foreign policy of Pakistan to have strong bilateral relations with Afghanistan. Pakistan has always supported peace and prosperity in Afghanistan. Afghan people should now spend their lives as modern society. The situation in Afghanistan will be better after the withdrawal of NATO forces. Pakistan has always proved its sincerity for long term peace in Afghanistan.

Brig (Retd) Haris Nawaz (Defense Expert)

Dr. Mona Liza (Climate Expert)

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