Good Morning

The prime minister’s think tank at a meeting on Sunday advised the government to consider reducing tax rates and shifting focus of federal and provincial development programmes to high-impact areas while keeping a close eye on an effective rescue and relief campaign to protect vulnerable segments of society from the serious fallout triggered by Covid-19 in the country. Pakistan’s consumer price inflation eased to 8.5 per cent in April, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics said on Friday, extending a months-long decline as the economy tanks due to the coronavirus crisis despite three interest rate cuts. KARACHI: With the arrival of funds from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Pakistan’s total liquid foreign exchange reserves crossed $18 billion mark at the end of last week. The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) announced on Friday that it has met the revenue collection target of Rs 200 billion set for April 2020 and collected Rs 256 billion out of revised annual revenue target of Rs 3908 billion for the current Financial Year. A team of financial gurus formed by the prime minister to come up with solutions for injecting some life into the country’s economy and offset the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has decided to limit its advisory role to only six areas and shift its focus away from macroeconomic issues.

Market View: The KSE100 Index gained 952.80 points during Thursday’s trading session. We expect the market to remain stable and range bound in the upcoming session.

Commodities:

Brent oil (USD/bbl): 26.11 (-1.25% D/D)
Crude oil (USD/bbl): 18.78 (-5.06% D/D)
Gold (USD/oz): 1,709.20 (+0.488% D/D)

National News

PM’s think tank asks govt to cut tax rates

ISLAMABAD: The prime minister’s think tank at a meeting on Sunday advised the government to consider reducing tax rates and shifting focus of federal and provincial development programmes to high-impact areas while keeping a close eye on an effective rescue and relief campaign to protect vulnerable segments of society from the serious fallout triggered by Covid-19 in the country.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1554379/pms-think-tank-asks-govt-to-cut-tax-rates

PSX demands incentives a la everyone else

“Eliminate capital gains tax (CGT) for the next 12-24 months,” says the PSX. “If that is not possible, then reduce the CGT rates for (holdings of) up to 12 months at 10 per cent and remove it altogether for holdings of more than 12 months.”

https://www.dawn.com/news/1554390/psx-demands-incentives-a-la-everyone-else

Inflation eases to 8.5pc as Covid-19 hammers economy

Pakistan’s consumer price inflation eased to 8.5 per cent in April, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics said on Friday, extending a months-long decline as the economy tanks due to the coronavirus crisis despite three interest rate cuts.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1553713/inflation-eases-to-85pc-as-covid-19-hammers-economy

Forex reserves exceed $18bn

With the arrival of funds from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Pakistan’s total liquid foreign exchange reserves crossed $18 billion mark at the end of last week.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/3-page/835511-news.html

Pandemic may bring down export target to $22bn: Dawood

Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce, Abdul Razak Dawood said the country’s exports target of $25 billion could not be achieved due to ongoing situation the country.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/03/3-page/835697-news.html

Pakistan textile exporters get new orders

Pakistan’s exports may not suffer so badly, but moderately as textile manufacturers – the country’s single largest export industry – have reported receipt of new buying orders from different countries after the world slowly softened lockdown imposed to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2212716/2-pakistan-textile-exporters-get-new-orders/

Economic repairmen limited to six areas only

ISLAMABAD  : A team of financial gurus formed by the prime minister to come up with solutions for injecting some life into the country’s economy and offset the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has decided to limit its advisory role to only six areas and shift its focus away from macroeconomic issues.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2213372/1-economic-repairmen-limited-six-areas/

World Bank prepares $247.5m PREP to help Pakistan fight virus

ISLAMABAD  : The World Bank (WB) has said that it has prepared a $247.5 million programme to support Pakistan’s frontline healthcare staff and those whose lives have been affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic, which has aggravated the human and economic sufferings across the globe.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2213383/2-world-bank-prepares-247-5m-prep-help-pakistan-fight-virus/

PSDP 2019-20: Rs533.33bn released against budgeted Rs701bn

The federal government has released Rs533.33 billion (76.1 percent) including Rs102.7 billion foreign aid (80.12 percent) for various ongoing and new development projects under the Public-Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2019-20 against the total budgeted allocation of Rs701 billion.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/03/8-page/835742-news.html

PSO warns diesel stocks crisis looming

ISLAMABAD: The stock of diesel with the oil marketing companies (OMCs) except the Pakistan State Oil (PSO) have plummeted to an average of three days across that country due to low uplifting from the refineries, hoarding and exploitation of import by some oil firms.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/2213000/2-pso-warns-diesel-stocks-crisis-looming/

SBP extends deadline for risk profiling

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has extended deadline for risk profiling of customers and trade-related risk profiling.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/03/8-page/835738-news.html

FBR achieves April revenue target

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) announced on Friday that it has met the revenue collection target of Rs 200 billion set for April 2020 and collected Rs 256 billion out of revised annual revenue target of Rs 3908 billion for the current Financial Year.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/02/1-page/835589-news.html

SBP increases financing limit by 150pc under RFCC

In order to facilitate the health sector in its fight against COVID-19, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has enhanced financing limit by 150 percent for a single hospital or medical center under the Refinance Facility for Combating COVID-19.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/02/1-page/835599-news.html

SBP urged for more cut in policy rate

Industrialists have urged the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for further cut in key policy rate to address the economic slowdown.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/02/7-page/835658-news.html

Cut in POL products prices

Federal government has tactfully avoided losing its revenue by reducing the prices of petroleum products in the country.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/02/8-page/835662-news.html

No need for panic buying fuel, Pakistan has ‘sufficient stocks’: Petroleum Division

There was no need for people to panic-buy oil products as Pakistan had “sufficient stocks”, the Ministry of Energy’s Petroleum Division said on Sunday.

https://www.thenews.com.pk/latest/653652-no-need-for-panic-buying-pakistan-has-sufficient-stocks-petroleum-division

Committee’s claims rebutted: T&D losses, taxation cause increase in tariff: IPPs

While rebutting most of the claims of a nine-member committee’s 296-page report, Independent Power Producers (IPPs) asserted that the main reason for high power tariff in Pakistan is higher Transmission and Distribution (T&D) losses and taxation

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/1-page/835486-news.html

Rs30bn SDGs plan being moved from cabinet division

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to transfer the Rs30 billion Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Achievement Programme (SAP) from cabinet division to the parliamentary affairs division, for effective inclusion of parliamentarians in disbursement of funds for small development schemes, it emerged on Friday

https://www.dawn.com/news/1553842/rs30bn-sdgs-plan-being-moved-from-cabinet-division

Foreign Companies: Repatriation of profit, dividends falls by 4pc

Repatriation of profits and dividends by foreign companies operating in Pakistan fell 4 percent during the first nine months of the current fiscal year (FY20).

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/14-page/835583-news.html

Provisional tax collection stands at Rs3.3trn

Despite lockdown and closure of businesses across the country, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has been able to collect Rs242.460 billion during the month of April 2020 against Rs289.905 billion in April 2019, reflecting a decrease of 16.4 percent.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/14-page/835582-news.html

Ecnec approves four projects of over Rs249bn

A meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) has approved four projects of over Rs249 billion for infrastructure, health as well as agriculture and water sectors (Diamer-Bhasha Dam Project acquisition of land and resettlement).

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/14-page/835585-news.html

Punjab to restructure wheat market with World Bank assistance

Punjab government has decided to restructure its wheat market reform process under the World Bank’s Punjab Agriculture and Rural Transformation Programme.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1554127

Govt takes note of cement price hike

The government is reported to have taken notice of the Rs50 hike in cement bag price by northern zone manufacturers in the immediate run up to the activation of the government’s incentive package for the construction sector.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1553861/govt-takes-note-of-cement-price-hike

Govt predicts surge in cases by May 30

As more cases of the novel coronavirus and deaths were reported across the country on Thursday, the health ministry data suggests that over 150,000 people will be infected with the deadly virus by May 30.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1553649/govt-predicts-surge-in-cases-by-may-30

Govt to debate ease in lockdown after taking all provinces on board: Asad Umar

A decision on whether or not the currently imposed nation-wide lockdown should be eased will be taken after taking all the provinces on board, Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar has said.

https://www.thenews.com.pk/latest/653649-govt-to-debate-ease-in-lockdown-after-taking-all-provinces-on-board-asad-umar

MSCI review on May 12: Pakistan may come under scrutiny again

Pakistan is expected to once again come under scrutiny in the Morgan Stanley Semi Annual Index Review May-2020 for a potential downgrade from Emerging Markets to Frontier Markets, analysts said.

https://epaper.brecorder.com/2020/05/01/14-page/835580-news.html

International News

Oil firms as OPEC+ begins record cuts; set for weekly rise

NEW YORK: US oil prices were 4pc higher while the front month Brent crude futures rose above $26 per barrel on Friday, with both benchmarks on track for their first weekly gain in four weeks as OPEC and its allies embark on record output cuts to tackle a supply glut due to the coronavirus crisis.

https://www.brecorder.com/2020/05/03/593767/oil-firms-as-opec-begins-record-cuts-set-for-weekly-rise/

Gold gains as rising US-China tensions dent risk sentiment

Gold prices climbed on Monday as risk sentiment was weakened by rising U.S.-China tensions over the coronavirus, while a firmer dollar capped gains.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/04/gold-markets-coronavirus-us-china-tensions-in-focus.html

Oil prices lower on US-China trade tension

Oil prices fell in early trade on Monday, paring last week’s gains, on worries the global oil glut may persist as U.S.-China trade tension could hold back an economic recovery even as coronavirus pandemic lockdowns start to ease.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/04/oil-markets-coronavirus-in-focus.html

Trump’s dig at China over pandemic rattles world markets

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump’s new threat of tariffs against China over the coronavirus sent a shudder through global markets on Friday, as India warned the world’s biggest lockdown would continue for two more weeks.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1553903/trumps-dig-at-china-over-pandemic-rattles-world-markets


KASB Research