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Karachi situation to hit economy, masses across Pakistan: Mian Zahid Hussain

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday said the most important city of Karachi is one of the most mismanaged cities in the world.

All the stakeholders are responsible for the collapse of infrastructure in Karachi which will hit the economy and masses throughout the country, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that Karachi is contributing Rs 2600 billion to national exchequer while improvement can boost revenue to Rs 4000 billion.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said rains have stopped activities across Karachi while the port has been closed as staff and labourers cannot come for their jobs which has blocked imports and exports.

He noted exports are stuck since 12 days adding to cost of doing business which can also reverse the trend of increasing exports for the last few months.

He said that the value-added textile sector is suffering a lot as they were hopeful of betterment after some relaxation in virus-related lockdown in the west.

The development can also reverse the steps by the government and central bank to boost the economy and increase exports while the agriculture sector has also faced problems due to torrential rains.

He said that NDMA has also disappointed people and the business community while the government must realize that national development is impossible unless infrastructure and logistics system of Karachi is improved.

NBP holds independence day celebrations
NBP to provide very soft loans under PM housing scheme

National Bank of Pakistan’s President Arif Usmani on Friday said his bank will provide all possible support for the uplift of the general public including provision of very soft loan to make them able to easily own residence under the Prime Minister’s Housing Scheme.

The PM Housing initiative was very revolutionary programme as it would improve the living standard of the common man and to generate big economic activity in the country. The construction industry has great potential to grow and more than 40 other industries directly linked to it, he said while speaking at a ceremony held here at NBP Head Office to mark 73rd independence day of our beloved country, Pakistan.

He said PM Housing Programme would help revive the economy affected by COVID-19, which had posed serious economic challenges to many countries. Prime Minister Imran Khan was personally monitoring the progress in this housing programme and was regularly getting feedback from the concerned organizations /agencies including NBP.

NBP President said this premier government commercial bank had recently gone through various policy, structural and technology upgrades which would start yielding within six months.

He said coronavirus had affected every sector and every organization, however with their professional commitment and high national spirit NBP employees served the national in the best possible way. And, special allowance will be announced for the top performers, he said.

He urged the bank employees to continue working will all sincerity and professionalism to earn big name for their organization and for themselves and for their best contribution towards the country’s prosperity.

The President said since its inception, NBP had been playing a pivotal role in the development of the country. The bank primarily established for jute financing, now has a prominent role in every sector of the economy. Serving the nation with more than 1500 branches, NBP was catering to every aspect of banking including Islamic banking, corporate banking, trade finance, agriculture, SMEs and retail, treasury and home remittances.

“We proudly discharge our responsibility of functioning as government treasury and have the largest rural network in banking industry,” he said adding NBP had taken a lead role in government initiated lending and goodwill programs like PM Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme and now PM Housing Scheme.

He said manage the foreign exchange need of the country, NBP had taken initiatives for promoting remittances through legal channels that included collaboration with Pakistan Post which created the largest remittance payment network in the country with over 2000 payment locations. Besides, he said, customized products in collaboration with Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment had been launched to provide banking facilities to intending emigrant workers. Resultantly, NBP’s market share in remittance business along with remittances volume had considerably increased in last two years.

He said significant population of the country was below the poverty line and promoting SMEs would be greatly help address this situation. Government of Pakistan was making all out efforts to address these economic challenges and NBP was committed to deliver on the national agenda of inclusive development.

Arif Usmani said due to its best performance, NBP had got two prestigious awards this year.

He said the global regulatory environment poses lot of challenges to the banking sector and the Pakistan economy in general.

NBP had taken various measures to meet certain FATF compliance requirements.

NBP Spokesman said National Bank of Pakistan by organizing independence day ceremonies at its offices/branches throughout the country had sent a message to the nation to show high spirit and celebrate this great day with their renewed commitment to secure the homeland from all evil forces and make the country strong and prosperous.

On this occasion, NBP President along with his team hoisted national flag on the NBP Building.

Standard Chartered Saadiq Pakistan offers halal cross border trade solutions
  • The only international bank in Pakistan with a global network that can connect Halal businesses with Islamic Finance

Standard Chartered Saadiq Pakistan, is the only international bank in Pakistan that offers Halal Cross border trade solutions to its clients. With its strong network, Standard Chartered offers world class ‘Halal360’ solutions to support local businesses thrive within the global Halal eco-system.

Announced through a virtual client webinar, “HALAL360: Connecting halal businesses with Islamic Finance”, which was jointly hosted by Standard Chartered Malaysia and Standard Chartered Pakistan, the Bank aims at promoting Bilateral trade and exploring investment opportunities between the two Muslim countries of Pakistan and Malaysia.

The panellists who shared their insights during the webinar were:

  • Hairol Ariffein, Chief Executive Officer, Halal Development Corporation, Malaysia

  • Asad Sajjad, Chief Executive Officer, Halal Development Council, Pakistan

  • Suhaimi Abdul Hamid, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Saadiq Malaysia

  • Azhar Aslam, Head of Islamic Banking, Standard Chartered Saadiq Pakistan

Worldwide, the global demand for Halal products will continue to increase as the Halal market has expanded from food and beverage products to cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, modest fashion and Halal tourism. It is projected that the global Halal industry is set to grow to USD3.1trillion by 2023 presenting ample opportunities for Pakistani companies to be part of this ever-growing global market.

Commenting on the opportunity, Rehan Shaikh, CEO Standard Chartered Pakistan, said: “To achieve the spirit of a holistic and sustainable Halal economy, it is essential to ensure that Shariah compliance prevails not only in the financing but also in the entire product and supply chain ecosystem of the participating organisations. This creates an appeal and pull for these businesses, which is universal in nature. Standard Chartered, in line with its brand promise of being here for our clients, has the global network to nurture this ecosystem and provide our clients with attractive Shariah-compliant solutions.”

Standard Chartered Saadiq is the only international Islamic bank with a network spanning across Asia, Africa and Middle East that provides an unparallel network advantage to clients seeking access to new markets through Shariah-compliant product offerings. Through its network, the Bank is poised to be a key driver in facilitating business matching opportunities for local businesses in their global expansion. Halal360 offers the right solutions at each step of the business cycle, whether they trade within a country or across the world.

Azhar Aslam, Head of Islamic Banking Standard Chartered Pakistan said: “Over the years, there is growing awareness of Halal Tayyab, which calls for Shariah-compliance to be assessed throughout the entire supply chain of a Halal business. This poses an equally growing need for not only utilising Islamic financial services to ensure end-to-end Shariah-compliance, but also the need to ensure that every step of the business operation including manufacturing, marketing, distribution and financing is Shariah-compliant. By capitalising on the synergies between the Halal industry and Islamic finance, we can foster a truly Halal global economy. We look forward to facilitating the growth of Halal trade corridor between Malaysia and Pakistan by supporting the Halal ecosystem through Islamic financing solutions & products.”

Bank of Punjab to set up scholarship and research funds at the IBA Karachi

The Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi and the Bank of Punjab (BoP) signed an MoU to support the education of needy students from across Pakistan and fund research conducted by faculty on areas of mutual interests.

The MoU was signed by CEO and President of the Bank of Punjab Mr. Zafar Masud and Executive Director IBA Dr. S Akbar Zaidi at a ceremony held at the IBA Karachi City Campus, last week.

As per the agreement, under the scholarship program, financial assistance will be provided to five fresh undergraduate students from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, rural Sindh, Balochistan and Southern Punjab regions for the duration of their studies under The BoP-IBA National Talent Hunt Program (NTHP). The scholars will be supported completely for their educational expenses such as admission, tuition, hostel and mess charges.

The agreement will cover an all-expense paid scholarship to the children of the bank’s employees admitted to the IBA under any discipline. The BoP will also work on research projects of mutual interests with the IBA.

Speaking about the partnership, Mr. Masud said, “This collaboration between the IBA and BoP reinforces our commitment towards helping outstanding students from marginalized areas of Pakistan, without any preference for any particular province. This will also serve as a ray of light for those families who are going through a testing time and are unable to meet their children’s educational expenses. Employees of the bank are the biggest asset and their family welfare is my personal goal. Taking this objective ahead, this MoU will include extending full support for expensive higher education for the children of the BoP employees.”

Appreciating the initiative, Dr. Zaidi said, “We are grateful to BoP for extending their support for meritorious students from underprivileged regions, who are about to join us in fall this year. This generosity will help our students and their families during this time of unprecedented crisis by giving them a gift of higher education and by providing for their better future. This collaboration reiterates the core value of BoP of enriching the lives of community where it operates”.

Askari Bank and PHA-foundation sign accord

Askari Bank has signed an agreement with PHA-Foundation to provide mortgage finance facility to their allottees under Naya Pakistan Housing Schemes. Photo shows an agreement was signed by Mr. Abid Sattar, President & CEO Askari Bank and Mr. Tariq Rashid, MD PHA-Foundation. Dr. Imran Zeb Khan, Federal Secretary for Ministry of Housing & Works, Mr. Khurshid Zafar, Group Head-Corporate & Investment Banking, Askari Bank and other senior executives from both organizations were present at the occasion.

Mian Zahid demands tax breaks, interest-free loan and package for Karachi

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Friday said rains in Karachi have exposed federal and provincial governments and the city administration.

Masses and the business community have lost billions due to the rains and inefficiency of concerned authorities.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that the government should declare city as calamity-hit, announce tax breaks, interest-free loans and a package for Karachi to push life back to normal and save businessmen from bankruptcy.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that rainwater has entered homes, offices, and industries due to a broken sanitation and disposal system. The water has damaged building material, stored food items and exportable things worth billions of rupees.

He noted electricity, gas, and water is disconnected, the water board is not working, drains are blocked, the industry has been closed while exports and imports have been discontinued.

Federal provincial and city departments are more interested in shifting blame than resolving issues while blaming record spells over the last 90 years. The Karachi is suffering from governance crisis since many decades and authorities prefer firefighting over long-term and sustainable solutions which amounts to damaging the national economy.

The infrastructure has deteriorated to an extent that it cannot withstand routine rains paralyzing the whole city. The provincial government has cancelled leaves after 40 deaths during rains which is useless and they officials will not be able to come to the office as most of the city has submerged and all the roads have become rivers.

He said that PTI, PPP, and MQM should unite to end the culture of corruption and improve infrastructure otherwise the city will continue to suffer. Karachi cannot be left on the mercy of climate and masses are not ready to listen to lame excuses of concerned officials, he said.

Askari Bank and Honda Atlas cars launch an auto finance promotion

Askari Bank has signed an MoU with Honda Atlas Cars (Pakistan) Limited which will allow customers to purchase Honda vehicles through Askari Bank on attractive markup rate. The promotion allows purchase of Honda cars including Civic RS Turbo, Civic Turbo Oriel, Civic Oriel, City (All Grades) & BR-V (All Grades) with exclusive saving options. The offer also includes 50% waiver on processing fee, insurance @ 2% per annum with Tracker and much more.

The MoU was signed by Syed Taha Afzal, Head of Consumer Banking, Askari Bank Ltd. and Mr. Amir Nazir, General Manager Sales & Marketing, Honda Atlas Cars (Pakistan) Ltd.

Speaking at the occasion Syed Taha Afzal said, “In order to provide value to our customers, we have launched an exciting campaign in collaboration with M/s Honda Atlas Cars (Pakistan) Ltd.”

“We are excited to collaborate with Askari Bank to provide exclusive financial benefits on our Honda cars, and make all the difference for our customers”, said Mr. Amir Nazir, General Manager Sales & Marketing, Honda Atlas Cars Pakistan Limited.

BankIslami posts profit after tax of over Rs one billion for hy2020

The Board of Directors of BankIslami Pakistan Limited in their meeting held on August 28, 2020 in Karachi approved the Bank’s interim financial results for the first half year ended June 30, 2020.

BankIslami generated operating profits (before provisions and tax) to the tune of Rs. 3,382 million, registered a growth of 89% from last year. Growth in operating profits was driven by higher spreads, enhancement in core earning assets on the back of increase in deposits and improvement in cost to income ratio of the Bank. Provision against credit losses increased by around Rs. 670 million as the Bank, on prudent basis, booked subjective charge against potential impairments. In spite of this, the Bank posted a profit after tax of Rs. 1,074 Mn for the period ended June 30, 2020 which is 85% higher than profit after tax of Rs.581 million recorded during the same period last year.

The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in uncertainty and disruption at social and economic level across the globe. BankIslami being a responsible institution, took a various counter measuring steps based on guidelines issued by WHO, SBP and Govt. of Pakistan to ensure provision of safe and healthy environment for its employees and valued customers. Furthermore, pursuant to the deferment related relief packages announced by SBP, the Bank, profoundly engaged with its customers so that they can inhibit the financial challenges ensuing from COVID-19. The Bank also approached existing and new customers to extend credit facilities under specialized re-financing schemes introduced by the apex authority.

In order to cement its risk absorption capacity and strengthen its capital adequacy, the Bank successfully issued Pakistan’s first ever Listed Islamic Additional Tier-I Capital Sukuk (ADT-1 Sukuk’) during the current year. The total issue size of ADT-1 Sukuk is Rs.2 billion, of which Rs.1.7 billion was raised by the Bank during the Pre-IPO phase in 2019, while the remaining Rs. 300 million was collected via successful IPO which was oversubscribed by 1.07 times, Alhamdullilah.

The second quarter of 2020 was influenced by economic challenges escalated due to COVID-19, resulting in a policy rate cut of 625 bps to facilitate the leveraged segments of the economy. In line with this, moving forward banking spreads are expected to decline, as the asset portfolio will be repriced largely during the latter half of the year 2020. Risk averse strategy towards credit offtake, re-profiling of deposits with greater focus towards accumulating low cost CASA deposits and controlled growth in operating expenses will be Bank’s focal areas going forward.

MCB profit up by 24pc to Rs 13.2 billion in first half of 2020

The Board of Directors of MCB Bank Limited (MCB) met under the Chairmanship of Mian Mohammad Mansha, on August 20, 2020 to review the performance of the Bank and approve the condensed interim financial statements for the half year ended June 30, 2020. In compliance with the SBP’s instructions, Bank has not declared dividend for the second quarter ended June 30, 2020.

During H1 2020, MCB accelerated its business momentum while overcoming the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic which had an adverse impact on the economic growth the world over, including Pakistan. Following the breakout of the COVID-19 pandemic, MCB has taken all necessary steps to ensure continued and uninterrupted services to our customers in a safe environment. The State Bank of Pakistan has taken a host of measures to manage the impact of the pandemic, including cuts in interest rates, refinance schemes for continued payment of wages and salaries, ease in debt burden ratio, rescheduling/ restructuring of financing facilities, etc.

With strong build up in core earnings, MCB recorded a year on year growth of 24 percent in profits after tax (PAT) for the half year ended June 30, 2020. The Bank unconsolidated PAT increased to Rs. 13.2 billion compared to Rs. 10.67 billion in corresponding period last year. This performance translated to Earnings Per Share (EPS) of Rs 11.15 for H1’20 (H1’19: Rs. 9.01). The strategic maturity profiling of the investments based on the interest rate calls resulted in a gradual shift from shorter to longer term investments, thereby capitalizing upon the significant opportunity available.

The Bank’s net interest income for the first six months of 2020 increased by 30% over the first half of 2019, to Rs. 36.01 billion, on the back of volume growth and 69bps increase in net interest margin.

On the operating expenses side (excluding pension fund reversal), despite the surge in inflationary pressures and increased operational and infrastructural outreach, the Bank was able to contain the growth in administrative expenses and reported a net decrease of Rs. 138 million versus last year, with the cost to income ratio improving from 46.1 percent in H1’19 to 38.0 percent in H1’20. This was achieved through a strategic cost efficiency drive initiated in 2019 ensuring delivery through well-defined tactical plans.

The stock market has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic with worrying volatility; resultantly, Bank has recorded a charge of Rs. 1.3 billion against equity investment portfolio. With respect to advances, the full potential effect of the economic stress posed by the COVID-19 outbreak remains difficult to predict, therefore management has exercised prudence and booked General Provision of Rs. 4 billion during the half year ended June 30, 2020, providing insulation and loss absorption capacity in case of any NPL surge.

On the financial position side, the total asset base of the Bank on unconsolidated basis was reported at Rs. 1.67 trillion depicting an increase of 10% over December 2019. Analysis of the asset mix highlights that net investments increased by Rs. 180 billion (24%) whereas gross advances decreased by Rs. 32 billion (-6%) over December 2019.

The Non-performing loan (NPLs) base of the Bank recorded an increase of Rs. 939 million and was reported at Rs. 50.4 billion. The increase was primarily on account of currency devaluation impact of foreign currency denominated NPLs with no significant accretion in the number of cases.

The Bank has not taken FSV benefit in calculation of specific provision and has increased its un-encumbered general provision reserve to Rs. 4.5 billion. The coverage and infection ratios of the Bank were reported at 94.02% and 9.91% respectively.

On the liabilities side, the deposit base of the Bank registered an unprecedented increase of Rs. 129.92 billion (+11%) over December 2019, with over 50% growth from current accounts, improving the current account mix to 39.0% and CASA ratio to 94.2%.

Return on Assets and Return on Equity improved to 1.66% and 18.16% respectively, whereas book value per share was reported at Rs. 122.93.

While complying with the regulatory capital requirements, the Bank’s total Capital Adequacy Ratio is 20.51% against the requirement of 11.50% (including capital conservation buffer of 1.50% as reduced under the BPRD Circular Letter No. 12 of 2020). Quality of the capital is evident from Bank’s Common Equity Tier-1 (CET1) to total risk weighted assets ratio which comes to 15.23% against the requirement of 6.00%. Bank’s capitalization also resulted in a leverage ratio of 6.72% which is well above the regulatory limit of 3.0%. The Bank reported Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) of 227.51% and Net Stable Funding Ratio (NSFR) of 174.47% against requirement of 100.

The Bank enjoys highest local credit ratings of AAA / A1+ categories for long term and short term respectively, based on PACRA notification dated June 26, 2020.

Mian Zahid lauds PM’s personal interest in strengthening SME sector

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday lauded the personal interest of Prime Minister Imran Khan in strengthening the SME sector.

The business community supports the move of the government and acknowledges the efforts of State Bank of Pakistan in the connection, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that SME sector holds 40 percent share in GDP, provide 80 percent jobs outside agriculture but the majority of SMEs are undocumented which deprives them of benefits of soft loans.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that SMEs have to borrow costly loan from the market which increase the cost of doing business and create other problems, therefore, the bank check of any SME should be considered as collateral up to five million rupees.

The former Minister noted that SMEs lack research and development as well as marketing techniques which call for urgent intervention.

He said that many steps were taken to revive this important sector which includes establishment of SME bank and SMEDA but it proved to be a wastage of time and resources but now the PM is serious about the development of this sector which may prove fruitful.

He said that a new SME policy according to the ground realities should be announced as this sector comprises of eight hundred thousand industrial units, twelve hundred thousand services outlets and eighteen hundred thousand shops.

The present government allocated Rs745 million for the development of this sector soon after coming to power but to no avail. He said that the new SME policy should be focused on all the sectors and not only export-related SMEs.

Blueex revolutionizes online shopping in Pakistan, by offering Aramex’s ‘shop & ship’
  • Meezan Bank signs up as the first ‘partner’ to offer discounted subscription

BlueEX has introduced Aramex’s revolutionary ‘Shop & Ship’ International Online Shopping Solution in Pakistan that delivers products from around the world to your doorstep. This new product capitalizes on the latest technologies to offer cutting-edge e-commerce services, using this product, customers can enjoy local postal codes in 31 countries.

Meezan Bank, Pakistan’s leading Islamic Bank is the first financial institution to join hands with BlueEX to provide easier & discounted access to the ‘Shop & Ship’ solution by Aramex. Under this agreement, BlueEX shall provide a discounted lifetime Membership plan to Meezan Bank customers for ‘Shop & Ship’. Meezan Bank Visa and Mastercard Debit Card customers will only pay $5 instead of $45 in order to register for this e-commerce shipment solution.

Transacting across borders, throughout the global-village, will now be safer, quicker and easier, for Pakistani consumers. Purchasing through a documented legal channel like ‘Shop & Ship’ allows the customers to fully control their shipment with real time tracking till its last mile and doorstep delivery to its final destination.

A special signing ceremony for this collaboration was presided over by the Chief Executive Officer of BlueEX — Mr. Imran Baxamoosa and the Executive Director of Blue-EX — Mr. Ali Aamer Baxamoosa, along with the Head of ADC of Meezan Bank – Mr. Shariq Mubeen.

The CEO of BlueEx congratulated Meezan Bank for becoming the first partner of this revolutionary endeavor and stated that: “In 2011 we revolutionized e-commerce logistics with our online booking portal. In the next few years we established the most efficient cash-on-delivery network all over Pakistan. As our tailor-made services continue to evolve with the changing needs of our clients, we always ensure we are in sync with technological advances.”

The Head of ADC Meezan Bank stated that: “Our bank has gained competitive-advantage as our cards are being utilized at numerous points for international shopping and facilitating the payments of international postal-charges. This innovative service promises tremendous growth and enhanced performance for Meezan Bank, especially in the arena of international ecommerce.

Khushhali microfinance bank celebrates 20 years of excellence in microfinance

Pakistan’s largest Microfinance Bank, Khushhali Microfinance Bank celebrated its 20th anniversary on August 11th, 2020. This anniversary was unique in its nature as 5,000+ employees across the entire network of Khushhali Microfinance Bank, participated in the celebrations digitally, through a zoom meeting.

Khushhali Microfinance Bank was founded in 2000, with the vision to become the leading microfinance bank of Pakistan providing the most innovative financial services to micro, small and medium enterprises and low-income groups of Pakistan. The event marked two decades of its foundation while setting up a network of 195+ branches and 30+ service centers across Pakistan. Having serviced over 5 million customers to date, Khushhali bank takes pride in its legacy of providing access to finance to marginalized segment of the population, males and females alike, to invest in microenterprises for a better future and realize their economic potential.

President Khushhali Microfinance Bank, Ghalib Nishtar acknowledged the hard work that the entire team making Khushhali the number one microfinance bank in Pakistan. An Award distribution ceremony followed to recognize the best performing employees.

He added, “In the last 20 years, Khushhali Microfinance Bank has facilitated access to financial services for farmers, self-employed individuals, and home-based workers and particularly women; ‘It is an honour for me to lead this prestigious institution as it stands today.”

Economic situation improving, food crisis should be tackled, says Mian Zahid Hussain

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said last two years were very challenging for the government, masses, and the business community.

“Now the economic situation is improving but the food crisis needs to be tackled to shield masses from further problems,” he said. Mian Zahid Hussain said that despite the gloomy projections of IMF, World Bank, ADB, and other institutions the remittances are increasing but it may not last for long.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that now textile sector is getting orders. Consumption of electricity, petrol, diesel, fertilizer and cement is increasing while realty and stock market are getting better for which credit goes to the smart lockdown policy of the Prime Minister.

He noted the inflation is increasing and the promise of reforms in the FBR and other institutions could not be fulfilled. Rs148 billion were distributed among poor, interest rates were reduced, the industrial sector was financed while loan repayment was relaxed which helped masses and the business community, he added.

“Current account deficit and value of rupee was reduced and circular debt was increased during the last two years worrying investors,” he said.

The business leader said that global institutions have warned about a global recession and a food crisis for which the government needs to be prepared.

During the last two years decisions taken in the name of reforms harassed the business community, polarised politicians and destroyed the credibility of NAB which indicate that no reforms are better than bad or half-hearted reforms.

He said that the government should improve cotton yield, taxes should be reduced for the ginning sector, industries should get gas, load shedding should be reduced, energy prices should be cut, the business of Hajj, Umra, travel agents and restaurants should be revived so that they can play their role in national development.

Standard chartered Pakistan announces h1 2020 results

The Bank performed exceptionally well in H1 2020 and delivered Profit before tax of PKR 16.2billion, which is 26per cent higher than corresponding period last year.

With revenue of PKR 23.5billion, the overall revenue growth was 26 percent, whereas client revenue increased by 27 percent year on year with positive contribution from Financial Markets, Retail Products and Transaction banking. Cost discipline continues with only 4per cent year on year increase in operating expenses.

The current slowdown in the economic activity due to COVID-19 impacted the advances momentum. The Bank is closely monitoring the portfolio in the backdrop of the changing economic environment and is maintaining adequate provisions, where required.

The Bank achieved another milestone as total deposits crossed PKR 500billion. With a growth of 17 percent in H1, total deposits closed at PKR 547 billion, with current and saving accounts constituting 93 percent of the deposits base. The robust performance resulted in an increase of 14% in total assets to achieve the PKR 700 billion milestone. The optimal funding structure of the balance sheet continues to support the Bank’s performance.

Commenting on the results, Mr. Rehan Shaikh, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bank (Pakistan) Limited said, “I am delighted to announce our First Half 2020 results. The Bank has performed exceptionally well and has continued to deliver on all key metrics on the back of a strong balance sheet.

While the external environment remains challenging, our results demonstrate our strong business fundamentals. We continue to invest in digital capabilities to enhance our clients’ banking experiences whilst continuing to focus on strengthened foundations of controls and conduct, equipping us to effectively manage our risks, capital and liquidity. The prudent and proactive measures that we are taking now will make us leaner and fitter to take advantage of the opportunities that will help the franchise grow in the future.”

Challenging quarter impacts Shell Pakistan’s results

The Board of Directors of Shell Pakistan Limited (SPL) announced the second quarter results for the company on 21st August. The company posted an after tax loss of PKR 3,540 million compared to the loss of PKR 1,704 million made in the same period last year.

Q2 was a challenging quarter for the industry, COVID-19 lockdowns severely impacted volume. Although the lockdown measures have been recently eased by the government, Oil Marketing Companies in Pakistan still experienced a reduction in oil consumption. Pakistan’s Motor Gasoline volumes fell by 7% while High Speed Diesel volumes fell by 9% compared to same period last year. This declining trend in volumes also impacted SPL and had a significant effect on its financial performance.

During this quarter, the crude oil also reached a new low of $19/barrel in April 2020. The oil industry felt the impact of this volatility in the oil prices. This sharp decrease in the oil prices resulted in exceptionally high inventory losses at SPL which has significantly impacted its financial performance.

SPL is focused on playing a key role in developing Pakistan’s energy future and remains committed to improving its financial performance, while ensuring safety and compliance.

MPCL discovers gas at Ghotki Iqbal well

Mari Petroleum Company Limited (MPCL), Operator of Mari Development & Production Lease (D&PL) with 100% working interest owners by the grace of Almighty Allah, has made a gas discovery from its exploratory effort at Iqbal-1, drilled in Mari D&P Lease Area, located in District Ghotki, Sindh Province.

Iqbal well # 1 was drilled and tested using MPCL’s in-house expertise. The subject well was spud-in on July 11, 2020 and successfully drilled down to the depth of 1,250 meters into Sui Main Limestone formation. The well was tested at the rate of 3.127 Million Standard Cubic Feet per Day (MMSCFD) gas, 79 Barrels per Day (BPD) of water through choke size 40/64″ at Well Head Flowing Pressure (WHFP) 396 Pounds per Square Inch (Psi) from Sui Upper Limestone and Ghazij Formation.

The discovery of Iqbal Well #1 is the 6th consecutive discovery in Mari D&P area as a result of aggressive exploration strategy adopted by MPCL. Furthermore, Ghazij Formation has been tested for first time in Mari Lease area and has opened a new horizon for future exploration and would add to the hydrocarbon reserves base of the MPCL and the country.

Mr. Faheem Haider MD/CEO MPCL has congratulated the drilling staff of Mari Petroleum for their professional accomplishment.

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