PFC to hold 6th Interiors Pakistan Exhibition in Nov

LAHORE (staff reporter): After holding a series of five consecutive successful mega furniture exhibitions, Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) has announced three-day 6th Interiors Pakistan Exhibition at Expo Center Lahore from November 25,2016. Unfolding salient features to the media, PFC Chief Executive Mian Muhammad Kashif Ashfaq stated that the exhibition would promote furniture and associated products made in Pakistan at local and international level. To a question, he said, the council was expecting more than 50 leading companies and interior designers to display their products and up to 250,000 visitors to the exhibition. He said Interiors Pakistan was a step towards arranging international trade exhibitions and also enhancing the prospects of participating in international exhibitions. “Pakistan’s furniture industry has a great potential and the council has predicted that increased exposure through Interiors Pakistan would highlight the skills and talent in the country,” he said.

, and added, “The exhibition would also provide the younger designers and architects an opportunity to see the market trends and display their own work alongside that of more established professionals.”

PFC chief said, “The vision behind Interiors Pakistan is to create a space for furniture display and promotion across the country. The national exhibitions groom local producers to access the international markets.”

To another question, he said that government should declare furniture sector as industry and provide all relevant support with the view to enable the local manufacturers to not only cater to the furniture demand in the country and also increase its production to export level.

IDEAS 2016: All set for smooth conduct

KARACHI (Staff Reporter):The 9th International Defence Exhibition and Seminar 2016 (IDEAS- 2016) would attract a large number of exhibitors, defence delegations and visitors across the globe and we expect this mega event will prove to be of immense value in creating favourable environment for defence industry of Pakistan.  This was stated by Director General, Defence Export Promotion Organization (DEPO) Major General Agha Masood Akram, HI(M), while addressing 3rd and final Steering Committee Meeting held here at Expo Centre Thursday to oversee the preparations being made for the smooth conduct of IDEAS 2016, scheduled from 22-25 November this year.  DG DEPO apprised the house that large number of foreign companies are set to participate in IDEAS-2016, whereas, a large number of delegates including senior armed forces officials, bureaucrats and defence strategists from various countries around the globe will also attend the event.

Taking stock of the preparations for IDEAS-2016, DG DEPO expressed his satisfaction over the planning of pre-event activities and arrangements required to facilitate delegates and exhibitors, while the members also assured him of their all out support and commitment to work together for the success of the event in the national interest.

Upon the culmination of 3rd Steering Committee Meeting, the stage is set for conduct of mega event of international stature ie IDEAS- 2016 in a befitting manner.  All stakeholders both at Federal and Provincial level assured that remaining preparations will be completed amicably within stipulated time frame.


 Pakistan, Turkey agree to eliminate tariffs to boost trade

Islamabad (STAFF REPORTER): In an effort to enhance bilateral trade, Pakistan and Turkey have agreed to eliminate 85 percent of tariffs and also agreed to complete Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations by the end of current year to formally enact the agreement. The understanding was reached between the two countries during 4th Round of Pakistan-Turkey FTA negotiations, which were held in Islamabad from August 29-31. Pakistan side was headed by Robina Athar, Additional Secretary (Trade Diplomacy), Ministry of Commerce, while Husnu Dilemre, Deputy Under Secretary, Ministry of Economy, Government of Turkey, led the visiting delegation. According to a handout issued here on Thursday, both the countries also agreed that the elimination of tariffs will include regulatory duties and additional duties in case of Pakistan and additional duties and mass housing fund duties in case of Turkey. It is hoped that Pakistan’s exports to Turkey will likely increase by $500 to $600 million in a short span of time.

The current trade volume between the two countries has been recorded at around $500 million, with exports to Turkey recorded at $309.19 million and imports at $191.05 million.

Major trade items between Pakistan and Turkey are fabrics, beverages, spirits and vinegar, plastics and articles thereof, chemicals and machinery.

PPAF to support farmers through FFC

Islamabad(STAFF REPORTER): The Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund and Sona Welfare Foundation – the CSR wing of the Fauji Fertilizer Company signed aMoU to jointly fund an Agricultural Value Chain initiative. The PKR21.93 million project aims to provide timely and productive loans to small farmers which will be complemented by services from the FFC Agri Extension Services Department including the sharing of latest farming practices. The project will be implemented through PPAF’s partner organization, the NRSP Bank, in union councils KhudaBukhshMehr and Mad PirWah of Tehsil Ahmad Pur East in District Bahawalpur. Under this collaboration, assistance will be provided in farmer profiling, training of farmers on crop productivity enhancement and good agricultural practices and provisioning of micronutrients as training inputs. Other activities include social mobilization, launch of NEFR pest management, establishing and certifying all related and relevant backward and forward linkages, and deployment of SMS services for 300 farmers.

Moreover, SWF will provide necessary agricultural inputs including Zinc, Boron and other similar products, along with technical trainings on agriculture to selected farmers, while PPAF will provide loans to 300 farmers through the NRSP Bank. 

PPAF has been designing and implementing multi-pronged value chains to transform lives of poor communities across Pakistan. PPAF’s Agriculture Value Chain project implemented in Bahawalpur and Gujranwala has benefitted more than 18,000 farmers through provisioning of extension services along with specialized financial product and trainings. Linkages, capacity building of farmers and crop yield micro-insurance were integral components of the AVC intervention, whereby 34,503 acres of land were insured for 12,396 farmers. As a result of the AVC project, an increase of 21% and 13% was recorded in wheat and cotton crops of farmers, while a 13% cost reduction was recorded in crop cultivation practices of farmers.

Fauji Fertilizer Company is the leading manufacturer of quality fertilizer in Pakistan. Under its CSR initiatives the Company is supporting the largest farmer advisory program in Pakistan, which since 1982 has reached out to over 1.8 million farmers through free of cost micro nutrition, water and soil tests in addition to expert advisory and capacity building services.

The PPAF and FFC collaboration will empower farmers growing cotton, to reach the best quality of seed, farming techniques and fertilizer for the ongoing season. The farmers will have continuous support and expertise of FFC agriculture experts at hand through the FFC Farmer Center established at Bahawalpur, while the PPAF loans will help farmers in bearing input costs.