- A Russian delegation will arrive in Pakistan on Jan 20.
- Pakistan closes to strike a deal for Russian oil at discounted rate.
- US will not impose sanctions on Pakistan for the proposed deal, says govt.
The coalition government is moving ahead with its plans to strike a much-anticipated deal for Russian crude oil at a discounted rate as Minister of State for Petroleum Musadik Malik on Tuesday said that a high-level delegation from Moscow will arrive in Islamabad on January 20.
A day earlier, the minister said Russia had agreed to provide crude oil as well as petrol and diesel to Pakistan at discounted rates. “Our visit to Russia turned out to be more productive than expected.”
In a statement, Malik claimed that the US will not impose sanctions on Pakistan for the proposed deal.
Brushing aside claims of former prime minister Imran Khan about his alleged talks with Russia on oil import, Malik took credit for the proposed deal and said that the minutes of their meetings with Mosco officials can prove their claims.
Responding to a question about the financial crisis in the county, the minister said that the government is not deliberating on imposing any economic emergency. He maintained that the government recently paid $1 billion for Sukuk bonds.
He maintained that the country would not default.
‘Russia agreed to export petrol, diesel to Pakistan’
A day earlier, Malik said Moscow was agreed to provide crude oil to Pakistan at discounted rates.
Malik said Russia did not have Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). “Talks with Russia private firms are underway for the import of LNG, while we have also engaged Russia’s state LNG producers,” Malik said.
According to the state minister, significant progress has been in talks over the pipeline projects with Moscow.
Last week, The News, quoting sources, reported that Pakistan’s delegation asked for a 30-40% discount on Russian crude oil during talks in Moscow, but the Russians said they could not offer anything right now as all volumes were committed.
During talks on the gas pipeline projects, Moscow asked Pakistan to first honour its commitment to the flagship project of the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline (PSGP) to be laid down from Karachi to Lahore, Punjab.
In their response, the Pakistani team proposed to change the model of the PSGP project. The Russian side said that the model of the project under GtG (government-to-government) arrangement had already been settled, save for some clauses of the shareholding agreement, which would soon be finalised.
Talking to the journalists, Malik said the country required one percent additional energy to meet the demand.
To a question, he said the government would ensure uninterrupted gas supply to households during cooking hours. “More gas is being supplied to the domestic sector in December 2022 compared to the last year,” the minister said
PKR on track to become top-performing currency this month: Bloomberg
- Pakistani currency rose around 6% this month against dollar.
- Authorities curb leakages happening through illegal channels.
- Crackdown on illegal dollar traders helps local currency.
The Pakistani rupee is on track to become the top performer globally in September as the caretaker government continues its crackdown on illegal dollar trade, Bloomberg reported Thursday.
The local currency rose around 6% this month against the dollar — an amazing feat despite the Thai baht and South Korean won tumbling against the greenback.
Major currencies lost ground against the dollar on speculations that the US interest rates will stay elevated for longer.
The rupee increased 0.1% to 287.95 per dollar on Thursday, after sliding to a record low of about 307 this month. Pakistan’s currency market will remain closed for the Eid Miladun Nabi holiday on Friday.
“Many leakages were happening through illegal channels of hawala and hundi trade from the open market,” Khurram Schehzad, chief executive officer of Alpha Beta Core Solutions Pvt Ltd, told Bloomberg.
“When the dollar rate reverses everybody, the hoarders, the exporters who are holding their export proceeds, start selling their dollars,” Schehzad said.
The interim rulers have intensified efforts by launching a crackdown on people involved in the illegal dollar trade, allowing the currency to gain some lost ground.
The Federal Investigation Agency, Bloomberg reported, conducted raids across the country and security officials in plainclothes were deployed at money exchanges to monitor dollar sales as part of the crackdown.
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar this week said the rupee’s gain is “fostering optimism for stability.”
For its part, the State Bank of Pakistan raised the capital requirements of smaller exchange companies and ordered large banks to open their own exchange companies to make the retail foreign exchange market more transparent and easier to monitor.
Pakistan issues tender for LNG cargoes to meet winter demand
inDrive now available in five more Pakistani cities
KARACHI: inDrive, a popular ride-hailing service in Pakistan, has now expanded its network to five more cities across Pakistan including Larkana, Kāmoke, Sheikhupura, Hafizabad, and Okara.
In a statement issued by the transport company, the inclusion of these cities reflects inDrive’s dedication to bringing innovative transportation options to both urban centres and suburban areas.
Speaking about the expansion, Senior Business Representative at inDrive Hasan Qureshi said: “We are excited to extend the convenience and reliability of inDrive to residents of Larkana, Kāmoke, Sheikhupura, Hafizabad, and Okara.”
“Our mission is to redefine transportation by providing safe, affordable, and accessible rides to everyone. With this expansion, we are not only enhancing the commuting experience but also contributing to the economic growth and empowerment of these communities.”
PR Manager Sidra Kiran said that their new service offers city residents the convenience of accessing transport from their homes, eliminating the need to search for it.
“Both drivers and passengers stand to gain significant benefits, including time-saving and the elimination of challenges associated with street hailing. This service addresses issues such as locating rides during odd hours like early mornings or late nights,” she stated.
She further added: “inDrive ride-hailing presents numerous benefits to drivers in small cities, including flexible opportunities, reduced unemployment, supplemental income, enhanced community connection, and positive contributions to the local economy.”
The launch of the company in these cities would benefit both riders and driver-partners.
inDrive further said that it remains committed to upholding the highest standards of safety, affordability, customer service, and technological innovation.
inDrive is Pakistan’s premier ride-hailing service and is revolutionising the way people travel. With a commitment to providing safe, affordable, and reliable transportation.
The company allowed riders to connect with nearby drivers with its app.
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