- This season's cotton crop is doing well after having endured heavy monsoon rains, floods and heatwaves as of late, and the production target is likely in sight.
- In the interbank today, the Pakistani Rupee was quoted at 217.79, appreciating by Rs 4.12 or 1.9% against the US Dollar.
- Various parts of Sindh, including Karachi, received medium to heavy rains along with strong winds on Wednesday as the fourth monsoon spell entered Sindh, which is already reeling from the previous spells.
- About 130 villages came under water, and standing crops worth millions of rupees were destroyed in the riverina area after rise in the Indus river in Dadu, Jamshoro, Nausharo Feroze, Nawabshah and Matiari districts.
- NEPRA has approved an increase of Rs 0.57 per unit in the K-Electric (KE) tariff aimed at maintaining a uniform tariff across the country.
- The advisory council of the Fertiliser Manufacturers of Pakistan (FMPAC) renewed its offer to support the federal government in formulating a workable direct subsidy scheme for farmers, with a view to adequately use fertilisers leading to increased agricultural production in the country.
- China’s factory-gate inflation eased in July to a 17-month low, defying global cost pressures as slower domestic construction weighed on raw material demand, although consumer price increases hit a 2-year high.
- Russian oil flows halted to parts of Europe should resume after Hungarian group MOL paid transit fees owed to Ukraine, providing a temporary solution to the latest disruption of Russian energy supplies.
COMMODITIES - CROPS, LIVESTOCK & HORTICULTURE
- Cotton Crop: The cotton crop was doing well after having endured heavy monsoon rains, floods and heatwaves as of late, and production target was likely in sight, officials said in a briefing to the Punjab Minister for Agriculture, Syed Hussain Jahanian Gardezi. [BR] [BR]
- Garments Export: The export value of readymade garments in June 2022 was Rs 75.3 billion, up 48%, compared to Rs 50.8 billion in June 2021. [ET]
- PKR Appreciates: The Pakistani Rupee maintained its momentum against the US Dollar, gaining further to hover around the 217-218 level in the interbank market on Thursday. At around 1:30 pm, the rupee was being quoted at 217.79, stronger by Rs 4.12 or 1.9% against the US dollar during intraday trading. [BR]
AGRI-INPUTS, WEATHER, WATER & POWER
- New Rain Spell Begins: Various parts of Sindh, including Karachi, received medium to heavy rains along with strong winds on Wednesday as the fourth monsoon spell entered the province that is already reeling from the previous spells. As usual, urban flooding occurred in areas with collapsed drainage systems. [Dawn] [ET]
- Wildfires: A series of deadly wildfires raged in over 100 locations across the country from March until May this year due to unprecedented heatwaves, said the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD). [BR]
- Water Rise in Indus River Level: About 130 villages came under water, and standing crops worth millions of rupees were destroyed in the riverina area after rise in the Indus river in Dadu, Jamshoro, Nausharo Feroze, Nawabshah and Matiari districts. [Dawn]
- Flash Flood Damage: Balochistan was devastated by flash floods that began in June and have since killed more than 500 people, while close to 50,000 houses have been either been damaged or flattened so far, displacing thousands of people, according to a BBC report. The monsoons first hit Pakistan in the middle of June. The country’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said they brought 133% more rainfall than the annual average, which has not happened in years. [ET]
- Hike in Electricity: NEPRA has approved an increase of Rs 0.57 per unit in the K-Electric (KE) tariff aimed at maintaining a uniform tariff across the country. [BR]
- Power Purchase Agreement: The Power Division is reportedly unwilling to commit more than 1,000 MW of electricity to K-Electric (KE) from the National Grid in the new Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), saying any additional supply over and above committed quantity would be based on pro-rata basi and the quota of power Distribution Companies (DISCOs). [BR]
- Low-Cost Solar Projects: On Wednesday, authorities were directed by the PM to comprehensively plan for the completion of low-cost solar power projects on a priority basis, as an alternative to expensive imported fuel. 14,000 MW of solar power projects are planned to be launched this year. [BR] [ET]
- Direct Subsidy Scheme: The advisory council of the Fertiliser Manufacturers of Pakistan (FMPAC) renewed its offer to support the federal government in formulating a workable direct subsidy scheme for farmers on Wednesday, with a view to adequately use fertilizers leading to increased agricultural production in the country. [Dawn] [ET]
AGRI UPDATES & PAKISTAN POLICY
- Economic Crisis 'Averted': Finance Minister Miftah Ismail on Tuesday assured that the economic crisis in the country has been averted, saying that Pakistan is now heading in the right direction. [ET]
- Talks With UAE: On Tuesday, Pakistan's PM welcomed the UAE’s recent announcement to invest $1 billion in various economic and investment sectors in Pakistan. Shehbaz Sharif expressed these views as he held a telephonic conversation with UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. [The News]
- SC Cancels Court Reference: The Supreme Court on Wednesday cancelled its full court reference in honour of Justice Syed Sajjad Ali Shah scheduled to be held on Thursday (today) at the request of the judge himself. [ET]
INTERNATIONAL – OVERVIEW & MARKET OUTLOOK
- Global Market Trends: Oil prices rose on Wednesday, rebounding from losses early in the session on lift from encouraging figures on US gasoline demand and as a lower-than-expected US inflation figure drove investors into riskier assets. The consumer price index increased 8.5% from a year earlier. A decline in gasoline offset increases in food and shelter costs. 2 Federal Reserve officials said the softening inflation data does not change the US Central Bank’s path toward even higher interest rates. Meanwhile in China, inflation accelerated to the highest level in the past 2 years, largely driven by food prices. The People’s Bank of China said that consumer inflation will likely exceed 3% in some months during the second half of the year, but pledged to safeguard the economy. [BR] [ET] [Bloomberg] [Bloomberg]
- China’s Factory Inflation: China’s factory-gate inflation eased in July to a 17-month low, defying global cost pressures as slower domestic construction weighed on raw material demand, although consumer price increases hit a 2-year high as pork supplies tightened. [BR]
- Asian Economy Shares: SoftBank is unloading Alibaba shares valued at $22 billion, "accelerating a separation between two companies that once were tied at the hip and symbolized Asia’s technology boom". [WSJ]
- Grain Prices: If you think only a well-timed investment in US dollars earlier this year could have yielded stupendous returns, think again. The return could have easily been matched – nay beaten – by a portfolio investment in food grains. And unlike the currency - which is now showing signs of easing - cereal prices are marching forward like there is no tomorrow! [BR]
- Russia-Ukraine War: The foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) economic powers have called on Moscow to immediately return Ukraine’s embattled Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to full Ukrainian control, amid growing fears of a potential disaster. [Al Jazeera]
- Russian Oil Pipeline: Russian oil flows halted to parts of Europe should resume after Hungarian group MOL paid transit fees owed to Ukraine, officials and a minister said, providing a temporary solution to the latest disruption of Russian energy supplies. [ET]
PAKISTAN - REMAINDERS
- Resurgence of Taliban: PTI leader, Murad Saeed warned on Sunday that the resurgence of Taliban in Swat, few months after the “imported regime” took over, is a dangerous sign which, if not stopped, would have a serious impact on the overall security situation of the country. [BR]
- Opinion: Prospects brighten for the shipping sector? - it may be wise for the government to draft laws and policies to aid and grow the shipping industry, exempting it by law from the ‘capriciousness’ of tax authorities and ‘foreign lenders’. - By Capt. Anwar Shah [BR]