Global demand for LNG grew by 12.5%:Shell Annual Outlook

Karachi(Cliff News)Global demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG) grew by 12.5% to 359 million tonnes in 2019, according to Shell’s latest annual LNG Outlook published today – a significant increase that bolsters LNG’s growing role in the transition to a lower-carbon energy system.2019 saw key developments that are helping to reshape the industry, namely;  

  • an industry record of 40 million tonnes of additional supply becoming available and being consumed by the market.
  • the belief in long-term demand growth triggering record investment decisions in liquefaction capacity of 71 million tonnes.
  • an increase in diversity of contractual structures, providing a wider range of options to LNG buyers.
  • the growing role of gas in improving air quality through coal-to-gas switching in the power and industrial sectors, with coal generation phase-out announcements more than trebling.

Natural gas emits between 45 and 55% fewer greenhouse gas emissions and less than one-tenth of the air pollutants than coal when used to generate electricity.“The global LNG market continued to evolve in 2019 with demand increasing for LNG and natural gas in power and non-power sectors,” said Maarten Wetselaar, Integrated Gas and New Energies Director at Shell. “Record supply investments will meet people’s growing need for the most flexible and cleanest-burning fossil fuel.”“While we see weak market conditions today due to record new supply coming in, two successive mild winters and the Coronavirus situation, we expect equilibrium to return, driven by a combination of continued demand growth and reduction in new supply coming on-stream until the mid-2020s.”Europe absorbed the majority of 2019 supply growth as competitively-priced LNG furthered coal-to-gas switching in the power sector and replaced declining domestic gas production and pipeline gas imports.  New spot-trading mechanisms and a wider variety of indices used for long-term contracts point towards LNG becoming an increasingly flexible commodity.There was a modest rise in imports to Asia in 2019, compared to the previous two years, a result of mild weather and rising electricity generation from nuclear power in Japan and South Korea, two of the three largest global importers.In China, LNG imports increased by 14% in 2019 as efforts continued to improve urban air quality.Also notable was LNG demand growth in South Asia. In total, Bangladesh, India and Pakistan imported 36 million tonnes, an increase of 19% over last year, pointing to emerging growth countries in Asia.Over the longer-term, global LNG demand is expected to double to 700 million tonnes by 2040, according to forecasts*, as gas plays a significant role in shaping a lower-carbon energy system.Asia is expected to remain the dominant region in the decades to come, with South and South-east Asia generating more than half of the increased demand.

 

 

 

 

 

Meezan Bank Shariah board approves guidelines for Digital Mobile Account

Karachi(Cliff News)In it’s recently concluded 46th Shariah Supervisory Board meeting, Meezan Bank’s Shariah Supervisory Board approved guidelines for digital Mudarabah-based mobile account to support financial inclusion in Pakistan.The meeting was chaired by Dr. Muhammad Imran Ashraf Usmani and attended by Sheikh Esam Mohamed Ishaq, Mufti Muhammad Naveed Alam, Mr. Ahmed Ali Siddiqui and other key officials. Mr. Irfan Siddiqui – President & CEO, Meezan Bank and Mr. Ariful Islam – Deputy CEO, Meezan Bank were also present in the meeting which was held at Movenpick Hotel, Karachi.The Shariah Supervisory Board showed its overall satisfaction on the Shariah-compliance environment and operations of the Bank.Several key issues were discussed in the meeting related to modern trends in Islamic banking. Guidelines for a digital mobile account – Meezan Asaan Mobile Account based on Mudarabah was approved under which a customer can open his digital mobile account at Meezan Bank without the hassle of visiting any physical branch. On maintaining balance in this account, the customer would be entitled to receive halal profit based on actual returns of Shariah-compliant financings on monthly basis. Furthermore, the customer can use this account to deposit and withdraw funds digitally or from any Meezan Bank branch all over Pakistan.The Shariah Supervisory Board also gave important guidelines related to housing finance facility to be offered by the Bank in collaboration with Pakistan Mortgage Refinance Company which is low cost housing finance solution for the lower and middle income families.Relevant guidelines related to Islamic Fintech solution for supply chain financing were also issued by the Shariah Supervisory Board to make Shariah-compliant financing solutions accessible to Small and Medium Enterprises in Pakistan.Earlier on the same day, a meeting between Shariah Supervisory Board and Board of Directors (BoDs) of Meezan Bank was also held as part of the annual meeting plan of the Shariah Supervisory Board and BoD. In this meeting Dr. Muhammad Imran Ashraf Usmani conducted a learning session for the Board and also apprised them regarding the key decisions taken by the Shariah Supervisory Board during the year 2019.

VEON’s Co-CEO shares key insights with National Incubation Center startups

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Islamabad(Cliff News)Sergi Herrero, co-CEO of VEON Group, the global telecom leader and Jazz’s parent company, toured the National Incubation Center (NIC) facility in Islamabad. Following a brief pitch session by Jazz xlr8 and other NIC startups, Sergi, who before being named the co-CEO was leading new ventures, digital products and partnerships for the VEON group, participated in a conversation with the startups on innovation, leadership and the future of digital technologies.Sergi also shared insights with the startups from his time as Facebook’s Global Director of Payments and Commerce Partnerships, where he oversaw the launch and growth of payment and commerce capabilities for Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram. He provided the keen entrepreneurs present at this talk the best strategies they can adopt for sustainable growth and expansion of their digital platforms.While lauding the efforts of the team behind the NIC, Sergi Herrero stated, “Pakistan is a dynamic country with a large youth population that is motivated, talented and eager to succeed, and this reflects in some of the work I have witnessed today at the NIC. Jazz’s intervention in this space provides these eager minds the resources and expertise needed to make a meaningful impact on society.” Since NIC’s launch, its incubated startups have generated over $5 million in investment and another $5 million in revenues. They have also created over 5,000 jobs and incubated more than 63 women entrepreneurs.Jazz xlr8, is an accelerator program for growth-stage startups at the NIC, helping them scale their products to the next level. More than 20 startups are on-board with this program, already generating over 1500 jobs, while raising over $1.6 Million in investments.“Jazz xlr8 startups are some of the best in the world in terms of their robust and innovative product offerings. In the three years we have worked with them, these startups have managed to create 1000s of jobs and raise finances to scale-up. Sergi’s visit today reinforces our commitment to the Pakistani startup ecosystem, as we look to double our support in pursuance of the government’s Digital Pakistan agenda,” said Jazz CEO Aamir Ibrahim.“Jazz is looking at innovative ways for digital interventions through our startups, operating in key areas, such as; Health, Education, Tourism, Agriculture and Gaming. We are committed to support socio-economic development in Pakistan, by providing technologies that impact the lives of millions by leveraging the largest infrastructure and footprint of Jazz all across the country,” said Jazz Chief Digital & Strategy Officer Aamer Ejaz.  

About Jazz

Jazz is Pakistan’s largest digital telecommunication company. Serving over 60 million subscribers across the country. 

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EBM participated Gulffood 2020 exhibition at Dubai

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Karachi (Cliff News)Following the recent launch of their new corporate brand identity, EBM participated in the Gulffood 2020 Exhibition held in Dubai. The overall response received from the buyers present at the exhibition has helped create multiple opportunities for EBM to expand their reach across international markets.In recent months, EBM has focused on enhancing its operational capabilities in order to be able to meet the increased level of international demand. With a reach that already spans to many major countries around the world, EBM hopes to further expand its consumer network to include other countries as well. While speaking on the subject, Dr. Zeelaf Munir, CEO of EBM, said, ‘We have taken the ownership as well as the responsibility to provide wholesome and nourishing food-between-meals to our consumers. With ever increasing levels of demand, EBM has kept innovation, research and development at the core of its production process. Through our market-research, we have observed the evolving needs of our consumers, both at home and abroad, and have been able to fulfill the needs of those looking for high quality innovative offerings including ethnic varieties.’Shahzain Munir, Director Business Development further added, ‘The response from this year’s fair has been overwhelming for our organization. We will continue to break barriers to enter into new markets and adopt cutting edge technologies for efficient operations. International markets are and continue to remain our primary focus for business growth. We are determined to continue contributing to the national exchequer by increasing the export of our products.’With a legacy of over 50 years, as a leading food company from Pakistan, and an example of flourishing entrepreneurship, EBM firmly believes that success and growth are achieved only through consistently striving for excellence. EBM’s commitment to remain abreast of global trends, while staying true to its roots, has enabled the company to satiate the needs of local and international consumers belonging to diverse markets.

About EBM:

EBM has been baking nutritious delights for Pakistani consumers under the brand name Peek Freans since 1966. As one of the pioneers of the industry as well as a dominating market leader, EBM continues to innovate on each of the three fronts: product, quality, and communication.

 

Crown group signs MOU with Total Parco

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Karachi(Cliff News)Crown Group, a leading two and three-wheeler automotive giant, has partnered with Total Parco Pakistan (TPPPL), a globally recognized player in the oil industry, to introduce a new infusion of quality Ultra Boost Multi-Grade Engine Oil which will be available all across Pakistan. Formulated in France, the high quality engine oil will not only rejuvenate vehicles engine life but also actively clean it due to its Pro-Cleansing Formula Technology.The signing ceremony took place at local hotel with the presence of dignitaries from both the respective organizations including Chairman Crown Group, Mr. M. Farhan Hanif, Managing Director, S.M Kashif Qaseem along with other directors of the group. The agreement was signed between Business Development Director, Crown Group – Mr. Zohaib Farhan and Vice President, Total Parco Pakistan Pvt. Ltd – Mr. Zaza Kandelaki.With a monthly sale of up to 10,000 motorcycles, Crown Group has now diversified its operations across motorcycles, all engine parts, batteries, body parts and tyres for two and three-wheelers. Their production capacity is laid out strategically in two factories in Sadiqabad, one motorcycle factory and 8 Chinese joint venture factories in Karachi and an industrial park in Port Qasim, Karachi.Crown is a leading brand in the two and three wheeler industries of Pakistan and the only local consumer brand that exports to international markets while offering solutions for all segments of the industry within Pakistan.

About Crown Group:

Crown Group has been the forerunner in two and three-wheeler automotive industries since 1963. Having the largest network of motorcycle parts across pan Pakistan, Crown deals in manufacturing motorcycles, tyres and tubes for more than 15 years.

High demand of CarFirst sales center franchise amoung used car dealers

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Lahore(Cliff News)In line with their commitment to revolutionize the used car industry in Pakistan, CarFirst, Pakistan’s most trusted used car trading platform, under their CarFirst Sales Center business introduced a complete franchising business solution for used car dealers and traders. After multiple successful launches in Lahore, a high demand for the franchise came in from used car traders and dealers from cities across Pakistan, and thus, CarFirst Sales Center Franchise is now available nationwide.All CarFirst Sales Center franchisees enjoy exclusive access to arguably the largest inventory of used cars in Pakistan at the best prices, as well as the standard online marketplace, easing the buying and selling of cars, as well as marketing and branding support. The Franchising services provide full support to used car dealerships and traders and helps them in increasing their revenue and profitability. The franchises also enable ease of access to CarFirst Sales Center customer base and digital operations.Commenting on this Shanawar Khan, Head of Operations,  at CarFirst Sales Center said, “ Our innovative franchising business solutions helps increase brand value, with franchisees receiving an increasing number of customers at their locations, with our dedicated Call Center generating leads and redirecting them to their dealerships. Our regular Gala events exclusively allow franchisees in their city to showcase their stock to a wide range of potential buyers. The Franchise Support Executives present at franchises helps improve customer service experience. We also help in generating additional income by providing our Franchise owners’ customers with many value added services under one roof, like Insurance, Takaful, Financing, Tracker, Auto service and many more.”Commenting on this Sheikh Rehan Ahmed, Owner of Car Boulevard, a CarFirst Sales Center Franchise said,“Working with CarFirst Sales Center has increased my customers and I have been able to multiply the scale of my business. It has taught me the benefit of bringing my business online, with more information on prices and varieties of cars.  By owning a CarFirst Sales Center Franchise I get exclusive access to inventory as well as 10 free OLX featured Ads that really help in getting attraction. Marketing and branding support to maximize lead generation and people who are helpful in managing operations is another bonus. The tech element of inspected cars in an online inventory has helped increase the speed of operations. I have had a very good experience so far and Insha Allah it will become even better. I recommend this exceptional service to my peers in the used car auto industry.”

About CarFirst

CarFirst is Pakistan’s most trusted trading platform, with a nationwide network of purchase centres and warehouses. CarFirst was founded in 2016 and has been the recipient of the largest Series ‘A’ investment in Pakistan from Frontier Car Group, and the largest Series ‘B’ investment from OLX Group. Consumers Association of Pakistan awarded CarFirst as the ‘Fastest Growing Tech Company’ in 2019. CarFirst aims to revolutionize the way cars are traded in Pakistan by offering comprehensive solutions for all things related to cars, such as evaluation, certification, financing, insurance, live auctions, and many more. CarFirst aim is to keep adding value across the customer’s journey, improving efficiency and transparency at every milestone of the car trading process.

 

 

Finland government to train 1 million Pakistani students

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Karachi(Cliff News)The Federal Minister of Planning & Development – Asad Umar, chaired the signing ceremony of a historic MoU between the Governments of Finland and Pakistan, to launch an initiative to train 1 million students on disruptive technologies like; Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IOT), Gaming-Tech, Health-Tech, etc. This is the first and the largest ‘Mass IT Education Program’ in collaboration with the Government of Finland. It will be managed by prestigious institutions like the “Kajaani University of Applied Sciences”, Finland, “Allied ICT”, Finland and the Virtual University (VU) Pakistan, while also engaging a local partner – Integration Xperts (IX), in Pakistan to provide technical expertise.The former Minister of Information-Technology – Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui (MNA) also graced the occasion, accompanied by senior officials of the Ministry of IT & Telecom, CEO of Kajaani University Matti Saren, Rector of VU-Mr. Naeem Tariq, Delegates of Allied ICT Finland and Global Alliance, etc., while the CEO of Vendor Junction (Regional Partner) – Sayed Jawed also witnessed the signing ceremony, along with Mr. Umair Azam – Managing Director of Integration Xperts (Representative in Pakistan). All these stakeholders have been working hard for the last one year, to make this venture a reality.Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui thanked the Government of Finland for their support and stated that: “This valuable initiative reflects Pakistan government’s commitment to enrich the economy with an additional qualified workforce of one million youngsters, educated on European professional standards, to learn special skill-sets. It will enable them to capitalize on the latest trends evolving in Information-Technology. With their globally recognized certifications, these fresh human-resources will strengthen Pakistan’s IT industry, by nurturing a wide range of technology start-ups. Pakistan will thus gain competitive-advantage in the global free-lance work-space, to become an attractive destination for international companies searching for qualified technology experts.”The President & CEO of Kajaani University and Member ICT Finland – Matti Saren, said: The Economist Intelligence Report has declared Finland as the best country in the world for future skills-education, while the PISA research by OECD also ranks Finland as the best higher-education & training system in the world. Since Last year, Vendor Junction and Integration Xperts have been exploring ways to access the highest quality of mass-education, technologies and ideas. By following the proven system of Finland, millions of Pakistanis will now become highly-rated experts in the global business environment. The European enterprises are also being engaged to identify investment opportunities in this region, which promises great talents for building innovative businesses.Anas Al Natsheh – Director of International Education Cooperation at Kajaani University said: Resourceful international collaborations and digital technologies are enabling accessibility to quality education across the globe, nurture innovations, new ideas and products. These collaborations serve as great platforms for knowledge-exchange, teaching and learning. Rapid advancement promises accelerated progress, especially for developing countries.Jarmo Jarvenpaa, member of Allied ICT Finland and CEO of iSTOC stated: Digitalization is creating a whole new world of possibilities for growth. Partnerships are enabling new ways to attract investments and achieve agility for success. Working research institutes and local healthcare partners, Allied ICT has already executed a successful infectious-diseases program in Pakistan. Now we are implementing this international training program for nurses and healthcare workers, through mHealth education.The experts involved in this initiative recognize that; AI, IoT, Machine Learning, Data Analytics, Digital Networking, Gaming and Drone Technology, are essential skills for success in the global ICT market. Investing on quality incubation and commercialization centres with accredited certifications are needed to nurture local talent, start-ups, based on research, that can impact, sustainability and lives in society as a whole.