The finance minister, Mr Shaukat Aziz, left for Algiers and Paris last night for talks with Islamic Development Bank and Paris Club leaders on economic assistance to Pakistan. In Algiers, the minister will attend the meeting of the Board of Governors of Islamic Development Bank, which is being attended by the finance ministers of Islamic countries. Mr Shaukat Aziz is likely to raise with the Islamic finance ministers the issue of rehabilitation and reconstruction of Afghanistan after the completion of the current American military action.
Pakistan's second largest commercial bank, Habib Bank has been handed over to Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development.
An agreement was signed in Islamabad this afternoon by the Privatisation Commission and the Fund for transfer of management of the bank.
Aga Khan Fund had given the highest bid of over 22 billion rupees in December last year for acquiring 51% strategic stake and acquiring management control in the Bank.
The Aga Khan Family Health Centre was inaugurated here on Tuesday to provide healthcare services to the local people as well as Afghan refugees, a press release said.
Inaugurating the centre, Dr Luis Sampaio, president of the Institute of Portuguese for Health and Development (IPAD) also announced US$100,000 for the centre and urged the people to contact the centre for their medical needs.
Community based trophy hunting programmes that allow limited hunting of rare animals have become an important source of sustainable economic development for communities in the Northern Areas, a group of journalists learnt on a visit to the Bar valley organised by the Forum of Environment Journalists, Punjab chapter (FEJP), in collaboration with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
The touring team were first taken to the Gilgit Information Conservation Centre and witnessed the development done by non-governmental organisations and environment units.
The Aga Khan, billionaire spiritual leader of the Ismaili sect of Islam on Saturday attended with Tajik President Emomali Rakhmonov a ceremony laying the foundations of Central Asia?s first Ismaili centre in Tajikistan?s capital Dushanbe. Prince Karim Aga Khan is funding the construction of the religious and cultural centre. He will also finance the construction of a five star hotel in Dushanbe, Rakhmonov said. There are 15 million Ismaili Muslims throughout the world, including some 200,000 in Tajikistan.
Prime Minister Jamali would be hosting a luncheon in the honour of Ismaili Spiritual leader Prince Karim Aga Khan today (Wednesday) at the Prime Minister House.
Influential political personalities have also been invited to the luncheon.
Prince Aga Khan will also attend a dinner hosted by President Gen Musharraf on the very night.
The Aga Khan after reaching the provincial capital, Karachi on December 5, will attend the annual convocation of the Aga Khan University on December 6.
President, Khushhali Bank, Ghalib Nishtar has said the Bank would continue to generate 100,000 clients each year and by the year 2010 it aims to create about one million clients.He expressed these views while addressing a seminar on 'Current Issues in Microfinance,' organised by Pakistan Microfinance Network in cooperation with Aga Khan Foundation Pakistan through Social Institutions Development Programme funded by Canadian International Development Agency here Saturday.
Canada has pledged C$8.2 million to support rural development programming in Northern Areas and Chitral.The Institutional Development for Poverty Reduction (IDPR) programme will be funded through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
Canadian Charge d'Affairs Stuart Hughes, announced this at the project launch ceremony here on Friday.
Also present at the ceremony were Cida country director for Pakistan Doug Williams as well as senior government officials, representatives local governments of Northern Areas and Chitral and members of the community.
Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz here on Saturday reiterating his commitment towards quality health care for all in Pakistan, with major emphasis on prevention and control of diseases, said the government vision for health sector was based on 'health for all'.Change in education system is need of the hour, he said at Aga Khan University Convocation of 2005 batch, comprising graduates of medical college, school of nursing and institute for educational development.
'We recognize that as a nation we have to continue work towards universal, affordable, quality healthcare for every single Pakistani.'
Prince Karim Aga Khan has said he was considering to open a micro finance bank, and take part in other welfare activities in Afghanistan to help alleviate poverty from that country.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony of first Micro Finance Bank, set up by the Aga Khan foundation in Pakistan, he said here on Monday that a similar bank would be established in Afghanistan owing to growing poverty and other economic problems being faced by the Afghan government.
Acting President Mohammedmian Soomro has appreciated the keen interest of Prince Karim Aga Khan in the socio-economic development of Pakistan. Mr Soomro was talking to the spiritual leader of the Ismaili community, who had called on him on Monday.Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtyar and senior officials of the foreign ministry were present during the meeting. The Aga Khan briefed the acting president on the setting up of an educational city in Karachi.
The government will consider opening up of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Northern Areas to mobile phone operators. This was stated by Information Technology Minister Awais Ahmad Khan Leghari at a forum on development of telecom services in rural areas, organized by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) at a local hotel on Wednesday. 'I do not consider opening up of the AJK to cellular phone companies will pose any security threat,' he said.
The residents of Ganish town in Hunza have asked the Aga Khan Culture Service Pakistan to vacate a 700-year- old fort which was being brought under AKCSP control in the name of renovation.The heirs of the Ganish Fort argued that the AKCSP took possession of their fort illegally and without their permission. 'A large number of tourists are visiting the fort every year, but the proceeds earned through tourism are not being paid to its legal heirs,' they said.
The Aga Khan Foundation Pakistan (AKFP)] is hosting a two-day workshop to identify key applicable practices, opportunities, approaches and challenges on how public-private partnership can contribute to sustainable social development and a stronger synergy between the government and civil society in Pakistan.
Aga Khan Foundation (Pakistan) in cooperation with USAID, is implementing 'Releasing Confidence and Creativity (RCC): An Early Childhood Development Programme'. This programme is being implemented in 50 communities of Balochistan and another 50 in Sindh.RCC seeks to support practices and structures in communities, schools, NGOs, and the government that effectively promote early childhood development.
The Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP) will be presented as a case study in poverty reduction before the international conference on poverty to be held at Shanghai, China, next month.
This was disclosed during a discussion which was convened at the World Bank office here on Monday as a preamble to the Shanghai Conference. Country director John Wall presided over the discussion.
Prince Karim Aha Khan, the spiritual leader of Ismailis, called on Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz at Prime Minister?s House on Sunday and the two discussed the regional and international situation.The prime minister told the Aga Khan that his government wanted him to invest in Pakistan as there was great potential for investment in tourism in the country.
The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED) has announced a substantial investment to initiate tourism, commercial and urban redevelopment in Afghanistan.The fund will establish a world-class hotel in the center of the country?s capital Kabul, Prince Amyn Aga Khan, the younger brother of His Highness the Aga Khan, has said.
The government led by Prime Minister Zafarullah Khan Jamali has undertaken a record privatisation of Rs4 billion in its initial months which is unprecedented as compared to any previous track record , said Privatisation Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.Talking to reporters informally after inaugurating the 8th National Exhibition of Visual Arts, the minister said that Rs4 billion privatisation includes that of Rs 3bn through stock exchange divestment and Rs1 billion through direct sale of ICP Mutual Fund. The minister assured that the pace of privatization would be accelerated in due course.
Prince Karim Aga Khan on Tuesday said the West needs to improve its understanding of Islam and also recognise the issues that are agitating the mind of the Muslim Ummah. Prince Karim Aga Khan, who is on a visit to Pakistan, said this while talking to a group of editors.Aga Khan deliberated upon the various facets of US' understanding of Islam and lamented the bias against Islam in the West. Commenting on the post-Sept 11 developments, he emphasised the need for a better understanding of Islam and the issues perturbing the Muslim mind around the world by the West.