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Pakistan secures the world’s cheapest imports of Liquefied Natural Gas

Petroleum and Natural Resources Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi says Pakistan has secured the world’s cheapest imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG). He was briefing diplomats, civil society members and media personnel on three-year performance of the government.  He said since the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz came to power, LNG supplies were delivered in the shortest time of 11 months after five failures to do so over the past 10 years. He said the LNG tolling tariff of 0.66 cent per MMBTU was also the lowest of any floating terminal, which would go down further. Water and Power Minister Khwaja Mohammad Asif said there was no doubt that Pakistan was importing LNG at the lowest price. Furnace oil-based generation had dropped by 13 percent in April against 10pc increase in RLNG-based power production.

Punjab Rural Support Program licensed to carry out micro-financing

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has issued the first investment finance services license to Punjab Rural Support Programme (PRSP). This license has been issued for carrying out micro-financing as a non-bank microfinance company. Under the new regulatory regime, micro-financing has become a regulated activity. All the entities other than microfinance banks undertaking microfinance activities are required to obtain a license from the SECP. During the last two months, SECP has been holding discussions and deliberations with Pakistan Microfinance Network (PMN), Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) and other microfinance institutions. These discussions aimed to onboard the microfinance institutions as non-bank microfinance companies.

Banks earned Rs53bn in Jan-March
The profit-making banking industry depends largely on investment in government papers and the practice continued in the first quarter of the calendar year 2016. Banks raked in net profit of Rs53 billion in the first quarter, said State Bank in its Quarterly Performance Review (QPR) issued on Thursday. The report shows that the banking industry is in good health and would remain profitable as long as it continues to invest in government papers. The report showed that till March, banks invested Rs7.421 trillion and most of the investment was made in government papers. This growth was mainly contributed by banks investment in government securities (mostly Pakistan Investment Bonds) as overall advances observed seasonal decline owing to net retirements against commodity financing and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) financing, said the report.

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