to hold property Expo next month

Lahore, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): is all set to hold a real estate expo on November 15 and 16. Local and international real estate investors will be the part of this grand event. Chief Executive Officer Mr Zeeshan Ali Khan said that the Property Expo 2014 was being held to provide further exposure to Pakistan’s real estate market.

For more information, contact:
Shaista Zulfiqar
Senior Manager Communications and PR
42-A, Block XX,
Khayaban-e-Iqbal, Phase III,
DHA, Lahore, Pakistan
Tel: (+92) 42 3835 4444
Cell: +92 (0) 336 450 8982

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Systems Limited strengthens footprint in Africa with new strategic partnership

Karachi, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): Pakistan’s premier software house and the leading provider of next-generation IT and technology-led BPO services, Systems Limited enters into a strategic partnership with BSi Steel Ltd., Africa’s leading steel distribution company. The partnership involves support services for Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP and eventually taking BSi to the latest version of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3. Systems Limited is also working on revamping BSi’s Business Intelligence dashboards.

Earlier this year, Systems Limited had been named to 2014 President’s Club for Microsoft Dynamics, a membership that represents only the top five percent of Microsoft Dynamics partners worldwide.
With this strategy partnership, BSi Steel would be able to leverage on the years long expertise of Systems Limited’s ERP consultants in enabling customers to quickly realize the range of business benefits offered by the Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP.

“We have battled with our current ERP to date and Systems Limited has proven by means of a POC that they have the required level of skill and ability to understand the customers’ requirements”, mentioned Andrew Wood, Group IT Manager, BSi Steel Ltd – also said that “BSi Steel seeks to stabilize its current AX implementation over the next 3 to 4 months with Systems Limited’s support services while discovering the AX 2012 features through mini projects and ultimately setting up for the upgrade.”.

By revamping their ERP and Business Intelligence dashboards, the steel distribution company seeks to improve operational efficiency across various functions by aligning their tactical, day-to-day activities with the overall business strategies, and to help them make better-informed business decisions.
“This strategic partnership with BSI Steel marks yet another milestone for Systems Limited, as over the course of four decades, Systems Ltd has moved steps ahead in diversifying its business operations and strengthening its global footprint”, said Asif Peer, Managing Director and CEO, Systems Limited.

Mr. Wood added, “we selected Systems Limited as our preferred partner for three main reasons; Trust, which we believe is very important for us to have in our ERP partner; hands-on Microsoft Dynamics AX implementation and upgrade experiences, which Systems Limited demonstrated before we signed up; and breadth and depth of experience with the Business Intelligence solutions”.

For more information, contact:
Erum Anwar
Assistant Manager, Marketing and PR
Systems Limited
E-5, Central Commercial Area
Shaheed-e-Millat Road Karachi-75350
Phone: +9221 34549385-7 X 227
Cell: +92 322 8000035

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Ishaq Dar meets Executive Vice president China Development Bank

Islamabad, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): The China Development Bank has evinced interest and agreed to be the local sponsors of an awareness conference for prospective investors for the construction of the 4500 MW Diamer Bhasha dam for power generation.

This transpired during Federal Minister of Finance and Revenue Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar’s meeting with Zhao Xiaoyu the Executive Vice President of China Development Bank in Beijing today. During the meeting held in a very cordial atmosphere, the Minister expressed gratitude of the Government of Pakistan for CDB’s solid support in the past and hoped for continued support and cooperation.

Minister Ishaq Dar said that the present government was on the trail of major reforms program in the taxation, power, banking and corporate sector. Rupee stabilization, marked improvement in stock exchanges indices, increase in the forex reserves were some of the immediate positive results.

The government had set tough targets for itself in the Vision 2025 document and was determined to achieve them. Strict financial discipline and cut down on wasteful expenditure showed our resolve to implement the reform programme, he said.

The Minister said that there was potential in energy, power, mining, agriculture and infrastructure sectors and CDB would reap further dividends if it teamed up to develop these potentials. He mentioned that Pakistani policy regime in the power sector was very rewarding.

Zhao Xiaoyu expressed appreciation for Pakistan’s cooperation particularly in investment sector. He said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor had opened up broad new vista of opportunities. Pakistan was increasingly providing a good space to companies to establish their footprint. He said that Pakistan China Investment Company was an example of fine partnership of Pakistan and CDB.

He stressed the need to diversify and expand its operations and that we should take more advantage of it. In his remarks earlier he said that in his last visit to Pakistan early this year he saw the resolve of the government in improving the economy. He said that “he saw a Government in action”.

For more information, contact:
Haji Ahmed Malik
Principal Information Officer
Press Information Department (PID)
Tel: +92-51-9252323 and +92-51-9252324
Fax: +92-51-9252325 and +92-51-9252326

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Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry calls for urgent replacement of faster meters to save business activities from further damage

Islamabad, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): Businessmen in a meeting at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry strongly protested against the installation of new faster electricity meters, which run 30-35 percent faster than the old ones and called upon the government to ensure their urgent replacement to save the business activities from further damage and consumers from unjustified overbilling.

Chairing the meeting, Muzzamil Hussain Sabri, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that business community has been demanding since long for replacement of new meters as they were running faster while Discos have been denying this stand. However, Prime Minister’s Inspection Commission has now proved this fact as it has confirmed that Discos have installed new meters running at least 30-35 percent faster than the old ones.

He said government should order Discos for urgent replacement of all faster meters and ensure standardization of all electricity meters to ensure that consumers are billed only for actual consumption of electricity. He said despite long hours load shedding, consumers are crying on receipt of heavy bills, which shows that massive presumptive billing has been done.

He said that Discos have replaced millions of meters in the past couple of years and have reportedly generated about Rs.15-16 billion as additional revenue for July 2014 due to massive overbilling. He stressed that government should take strong action against the culprits and also direct Discos to return 35 percent money back to the power consumers to do justice with them. He said government should ask all Discos to upload monthly revenue collection figures on respective websites to ensure transparency.

Businessmen termed the installation of faster meters a criminal activity just to fleece the consumers in order to enhance the revenue of power companies. They said massive electricity bills have drastically reduced the purchasing power of majority of people and badly affected business activities as consumers have been forced to cut purchasing of many items for paying very high power bills.

Thus high electricity cost in Pakistan has negatively impacted the overall economy as it has caused high inflation, increased cost of doing business, discouraged investment, reduced purchasing power of common man, affected business activities, made our exports uncompetitive in international market and retarded the economic growth of the country.

ICCI President urged the government to introduce drastic improvements in the power sector to ensure transparent billing and focus on cheap power generation sources, especially hydro power to meet the rising energy demand of the country. He was of the view that the cheap electricity will bring multiple benefits for the economy as it will provide great relief to people, attract more investment, create plenty of new jobs and give big boost to business and economic activities.

For more information, contact:-
Khalid Chaudhry
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI)
Chamber House, Aiwan-e-Sanat-o-Tijarat Road,
Mauve Area, G-8/1,
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +9251 225 0526, 2253145, 8432676
Fax: +9251 225 2950

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Pakistan signs deal for establishment of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank as a founding member

Islamabad, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): Pakistan’s Federal Minister of Finance and Revenue Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar today signed the Memorandum (MoU) Understanding for establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in Beijing as one of the 21 Prospective Founding Member countries. The signing of the MoU signifies that the parties have jointly decided to establishing AIIB that would accelerate the negotiation process of the Articles of Agreement (AoA) for the bank.

Following the signing ceremony Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said that it was a historic and auspicious occasion for Pakistan to be a pioneer and prospective founding member of the much-needed infrastructure investment bank, that would be instrumental, though complementary to other banks in addressing the pressing infrastructure needs and development deficits of the region and beyond.

“The AIIB is a landmark decision and will provide financing support to developing countries in Asia for infrastructure development in order to promote regional connectivity. Pakistan has been supporting the initiative right from the initial announcement. We believe that the bank will be an important platform to convert the abundant savings available in the region into investment to help regional economies achieve sustainable and rapid development thereby contributing to the world economy”.

Minister Ishaq Dar said that in our region the “appetite for infrastructure is much greater than other regions and it is lagging behind” and the creation of the bank would be very helpful in reducing poverty, increasing GDP, per capita income and overall economic growth and socio-economic prosperity of the region. “The region will have greater opportunity to focus on attending to the infrastructural deficits,” he added.

He said that it was imperative, given the dynamics and imperatives of growth in the region, to have a bank to augment and complement their services at hand through other similar banking and financial institutions. He said AIIB would work closely with World Bank, Asian Development Bank and other multilateral and bilateral development institutions in a complementary way to promote regional cooperation and partnership in addressing the development challenges.

He said it was a great win-win initiative of Chinese leadership that received broad support not just from Pakistan but many other countries. Since the beginning of the year, China had led extensive consultations with other regional and non regional countries on establishment of AIIB, he said adding that after several rounds of multilateral consultations, regional Prospective Founding Members had reached consensus on key elements of AIIB as reflected in the MoU.

In October 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang announced the initiative of establishing AIIB during their respective visits to South East Asia, he added. He said the historic signing would bode well for development and would reap many benefits. This would translate into further enhancing of bilateral and economic ties between Pakistan and China.

He said ICBC had opened branches in Pakistan, several energy and communications infrastructure projects including China Pakistan Economic Corridor projects were underway between the two countries and an institution like AIIB can play a pivotal role in materializing these initiatives.

With headquarters in Beijing, AIIB will be an intergovernmental regional development institution and would operate following the model and principle of multilateral development banks, focusing on supporting the infrastructure development in Asian region. The authorized capital of AIIB will be US$ 100 Billion and initial subscribed capital will be US $ 50 billion.

The initial paid up capital will be US$ 10 billion. AIIB will draw upon the best practices of the existing MDBs in setting up its governance structure. The establishment process of AIIB is open and inclusive, and other interested countries are welcome to join the process. It is expected that the AoA will be finalized after rounds of negotiations and likely to be signed in mid 2015 and AIIB will be formally established to start operation by the end of 2015.

The 21 Prospective Members include:-Bangladesh, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam. Indonesia would be the 22nd Member and has not been able to obtain necessary government approvals for MoU owing to elections in the country. It will join AIIB as the prospective founding member after completion of necessary formalities.

For more information, contact:
Haji Ahmed Malik
Principal Information Officer
Press Information Department (PID)
Tel: +92-51-9252323 and +92-51-9252324
Fax: +92-51-9252325 and +92-51-9252326

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Zakaria Usman expresses concern over current wave of kidnappings of businessmen for ransom

Karachi, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): Zakaria Usman, President FPCCI and ECO CCI have expressed deep concern over the current wave of kidnappings of the businessmen for ransom. He said that people are thinking of closing down their factories in the industrial area because of extortion and incidents of kidnappings. He stressed on long-term and effective planning to overcome this crime.

Zakaria Usman while giving his comments on the current situation of law and order in the city has apprehended that the kidnappings of traders for ransom are highly unfavourable and discouraging for the smooth business activities, in the Karachi which generates a high percentage of revenue for both Federal and Provincial exchequer and is known as the hub of economic and commercial activities in the country.

He appreciated that due to significant police and rangers operations against the criminals the law and order position in the city was improved in the past few months. He regretted that despite various operations of the law enforcement agencies in the recent months the new wave of kidnapping of businessmen, traders and industrialists is depressive. He further said that Karachi is the city of 18 million people has been gripped again by criminals, extortionists, kidnappers.

He urged the government and law enforcement agencies to curb the culprits responsible for such an ugly situation, otherwise it would become quite difficult for the business community to continue its activities with a peace of mind, which would be harmful not only for the Province of Sindh but also for the whole country, as the business activities of the country depends largely on the peaceful, smooth and uninterrupted economic activities in Karachi markets.

For more information, contact:
M. A. Lodhi
Secretary General
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI)
B-1, Federation House, Main Clifton Road,
Karachi-75600, Pakistan
Tel: +92-21-35873691, 93-94
Fax: +92-21-35874332

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Mobilink celebrates ‘Pinktober’ to increase breast cancer awareness

Lahore, October 24, 2014 (PPI-OT): Mobilink celebrated ‘Pinktober’ as a means to support Pink Ribbon’s campaign to increase awareness about Breast Cancer. The iconic Pakistan Monument in Shakarparian, Islamabad was turned pink in support of Breast Cancer Awareness. Across the globe, the month of October is celebrated as ‘Pinktober’ by turning famous monuments such as the Pyramids (Egypt) and the Merlion (Signapore) pink.

Omar Manzur, Head of Corporate Communication Mobilink commenting on the initiative said, “Mobilink has been a vehement supporter of Pink Ribbon for the past 5 years and as a socially responsible organization we firmly believe that awareness is the first step towards a healthy society. Our partnership with Pink Ribbon is reflective of our commitment to raise awareness regarding the most pervasive forms of cancer and hope that this drive helps curb breast cancer probability in Pakistan.”

Mobilink is the only cellular organization to support the cause in collaboration with Pink Ribbon. Mobilink has been carrying out a fund raising drive via SMS broadcast for the past 5 years. The SMS channel also continues to serve to spread awareness and educate customers with early diagnostics and treatment of breast cancer.

This drive also includes advertising billboards and other collateral at prominent sites across Pakistan. Mobilink also helps increase awareness through flyers and information material about breast cancer at its Business Centers across the country. Mobilink users can donate Rs. 20 to the Mobilink Breast Cancer Awareness Fund by sending a blank SMS to 8099.

For more information, contact:
Hussain Ali Talib
Manager – Corporate Communications
42, Kulsum Plaza, Blue Area,
Islamabad, Pakistan
Phone +92-51-2273984, 0301 822 9546
UAN +92-51-111300300

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