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May 03, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. UAE experts due today to discuss economic cooperation
• In order to extend support to the government for economic stability in Pakistan, a team of economic experts from the United Arab Emirates is scheduled to visit the country on Tuesday (May 3, 2022) to discuss the implementation of decisions made by the leadership of Pakistan and the UAE during Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif`s recent trip to the Middle East.
• According to the Prime Minister Office, the UAE economic experts would also meet PM Sharif in Lahore on Tuesday. The delegation will also interact with the government`s economic team and discuss ways to accelerate economic activities between the two countries.
• The prime minister would also host a dinner reception for the delegation which would also discuss promotion of economic and trade relations as well as investment
2. USF to launch fibre-optic, 4G services in Gwadar
• The Universal Service Fund (USF) is set to launch a fibre-optic project for Gwadar to bring 4G compatible high speed internet and telecom services to the region. The project is expected to be completed by the middle of next year.
• The USF has finalised paperwork for several projects, including 400km fibre-optic project in Gwadar and 4G services in the Loralai area of Balochistan, apart from upgrading data services to 4G in Vehari, Lodhran, Sialkot, Narowal, Nankan Sahib and Sheikhpura of Punjab.
• Sources in the Ministry of Information Technology said all these projects were in the process of finalisation and would start work after getting approvals from the USF board. `Tentative date to start these projects is set for the last week of June and will be completed in 12-18 months,` the official said
3. Restructured hiring procedures introduced in Nadra
• Restructured hiring procedures have been introduced in the National Database and Registration Authority with a focus on looking for brilliant candidates outside traditional talent clusters.
• A senior Nadra official told that leading universities were being approached to find out highly gifted students, under a new recruitment plan that promised transparency and merit.
• The restructuring plan paper seen by Dawn refers to massive political appointments on daily wages made by previous administration saying it had created trust deficit issues. The previous recruitment practices were unfair as future of a large chunk of employees continues to be hanging in the balance, the paper reads
4. Inflation hits two-year high at 13.4pc in April
• The inflation climbed to 13.4 per cent in April a two-year high from 12.7pc in the previous month on the back of a persistent increase in prices of perishable and non-perishable products, according to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics data released on May 2, 2022.
• The inflation measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI)is steadily on the rise since March undermining earlier gains. The increase in CPI could have been much higher had the previous government not frozen oil prices at the current level since March.
• All the three indicators-CPI, Sensitive Price Index (SPI) and Wholesale Price Index (WPI) measuring inflation saw an unprecedented spike in April
5. Spanish prime minister`s mobile phone infected by Pegasus spyware, says govt
• Spain said on May 2, 2022 that the mobile phones of Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Defence Minister Margarita Robles were tapped using Pegasus spyware in an `illicit and external` intervention.
• Their phones were infected last year by software owned by the Israeli based firm NSO, which is the target of numerous investigations worldwide, according to a senior official.
• `It is not a supposition, they are facts of enormous gravity,` said the minister of the presidency, Felix Bolanos.
• `We are absolutely certain that it was an external attack… because in Spain, in a democracy like ours, all such interventions are carried out by official bodies and with judicial authorisation,` he said