- The Spot Rate Committee of the Karachi Cotton Association (KCA) on Thursday decreased the spot rate by Rs 200 per maund and closed it at Rs 22,500 per maund.
- Nearly one in every three Pakistanis believe that the absence of dams was the main reason behind the catastrophic floods.
- The central bank’s foreign exchange reserves decreased by $278 million to $8.3 billion or 3.2% during the week ended September 16, which is enough to cover 1.19 months of imports. Pakistan’s current account deficit narrowed 54% to $703 million in August from $1.5 billion a year ago as exports increased and the growth in imports slightly decreased.
- Large-scale manufacturing (LSM) in July shrank by 1.4% compared to a year ago and by 16.5% compared to June.
- The Bank of England raised its key interest rate to 2.25% from 1.75% to “respond forcefully, as necessary” to inflation, despite the economy probably already being in a shallow recession.
COMMODITIES - CROPS, LIVESTOCK & HORTICULTURE
- Food Insecurity: The World Bank in its latest report “Food Security Update”, noted that hefty monsoon rains since June 2022 (67% above normal levels) and increased melting of glaciers due to extreme heat events have caused widespread flash flooding and landslides in Pakistan. The World Bank will provide Pakistan $22.2 million in “financial support” for the rehabilitation of flood-affected farmers. [BR] [Pak Observer] [ET]
- Adulterated Milk: 8,000 liters of adulterated milk was seized and destroyed by PFA Rawalpindi on Thursday. [ET]
- Spot Rate Falls: The Spot Rate Committee of the Karachi Cotton Association (KCA) on Thursday decreased the spot rate by Rs 200 per maund and closed it at Rs 22,500 per maund. The rate of cotton in Sindh is in between Rs 18,800 to Rs 22,000 per maund. The rate of cotton in Punjab is in between Rs 20,000 to Rs 23,500 per maund. The rate of Phutti in Sindh is between Rs 7,500 to Rs 9,800 per 40 kg. The rate of Phutti in Punjab is between Rs 8,500 to Rs 11,800 per 40 kg. The rate of cotton in Balochistan is in between Rs 19,500 to Rs 23,500 per maund. [BR]
AGRI-INPUTS, WEATHER, WATER & POWER
- Fertilisers to Flood-Hit Farmers: The federal government will provide subsidised seeds and fertilisers to farmers in flood-affected areas during the upcoming Rabi sowing season, Minister Tariq Bashir Cheema announced. [Dawn]
- EU Preparing New Aid Package: The head of the European Commission said on Thursday the continental bloc would “come forward with new humanitarian aid in the coming weeks” to support the people of Pakistan, currently reeling under the devastating floods. More than 10 million farmers, agricultural laborers, and daily wagers among flood affectees. [ET] [ET]
- Absence of Dams Caused Flooding: Nearly one in every three Pakistanis believe that the absence of dams was the main reason behind the catastrophic floods, reported a survey. Another 19% of respondents blamed their sins for the floods, which have taken over 1,500 lives and projected losses of between $30 to $40 billion. [ET]
AGRI UPDATES & PAKISTAN POLICY
- Foreign Reserves: The central bank’s foreign exchange reserves decreased by $278 million to $8.3 billion or 3.2% during the week ended September 16, it reported on Thursday, which is enough to cover 1.19 months of imports. The SBP-held reserves eased mostly owing to external debt repayments. [The News]
- ADB Approves $ 100 Million Loan for KP’s Health Sector: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $100 million loan to improve the quality of secondary health care in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, the lender said in a statement on Thursday. [Dawn] [ET] [DT] [The News]
- Current Account Deficit: Pakistan’s current account deficit narrowed 54% to $703 million in August from $1.5 billion a year ago as exports increased and the growth in imports slightly decreased. Data from the State Bank of Pakistan showed that the current account deficit fell 42% month-on-month in August. The country ran a deficit of $1.2 billion in the previous month. [The News] [ET] [Pak Observer] [The Nation]
- Big Industry Output Falls: Large-scale manufacturing (LSM) in July shrank by 1.4% compared to a year ago and by 16.5% compared to June, raising concerns about an economic slowdown caused by the highest-ever cost of energy and raw material for industry. [Dawn] [ET]
- Intl Precision Agriculture Pakistan Conference: A three-day International Precision Agriculture Pakistan Conference (PAPC) 2022 commenced at Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi (PMAS-AAUR), on Thursday. The conference is organized with an aim to provide researchers, scientists, and industrial personnel a platform to join hands in achieving goals of increasing farm profitability and reducing environmental impacts. [Pak Observer] [UP]
INTERNATIONAL – OVERVIEW & MARKET OUTLOOK
- Russia Ukraine War: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has caused almost $1 trillion of damage, a Kyiv government official said as the war batters the country’s economy. President Volodymyr Zelensky hailed Ukrain’s senior commanders as “superheroes”, including those who led the dogged defence of Mariupol, who were freed by Russia as part of a prisoner swap involving 270 people, including foreigners. [BR] [Dawn] [ET]
- England Interest Rate Increase: The Bank of England raised its key interest rate to 2.25% from 1.75% on Thursday and said it would continue to “respond forcefully, as necessary” to inflation, despite the economy probably already being in a shallow recession. [BR]
- Anti-police protests escalate in Iran: At least 17 people have been killed as popular unrest has flared across Iran over the death in custody of Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini, while a rights group said Thursday the death toll was almost twice as high. [Dawn] [Al Jazeera]
- More than 60 Migrants Die as Boat Sinks Off Syria: More than 60 migrants died on Thursday when the boat they were traveling in sank off Syria’s coast after departing from neighbouring Lebanon, the government in Damascus said. [Dawn] [DS] [Reuters]
- Bangladesh-Myanmar: Weeks of firing from Myanmar escalates tensions between the neighbours, raising concerns of a new Rohingya exodus into Bangladesh. (AlJazeera)
PAKISTAN - REMAINDERS
- Opinion: Collapse of civilisations - “Reconstruction will require continuous public expenditure for years. Where such a huge fiscal outlay is going to bring Pakistan’s finances under severe stress, massive crop losses, especially cotton, will create additional pressures on the current account, exchange rate and fuel prices. If initial estimates that 40 per cent of the cotton crop has been lost this year are correct, then this translates to a gap of almost $7bn in exports under the ‘textile group’, according to data obtained from the State Bank. And, the longer it takes for the water to recede, the more delay this is going to cause for wheat sowing, creating a flour supply shock down the line. This is particularly concerning given how soaring bread prices will not only increase poverty but could also lead to extreme social unrest as in the case of the Arab Spring.” - By Aqdas Afzal [Dawn]