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PMEX LISTS WHEAT WEEKLY FUTURES CONTRACTS

Pakistan Mercantile Exchange (PMEX), the country’s only commodity futures exchange, launched Wheat Weekly Futures Contracts duly approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP).

This is the third listing of an agricultural commodity on PMEX electronic trading platform within the last two years after red chilli and super basmati paddy rice where compulsory delivery is a key feature. The trading of Wheat at PMEX will provide an opportunity to the buyers to procure quality certified product as per contract specifications in an efficient and transparent manner. It will also help farmers to get better price and timely payment of their produce sold. To launch Wheat the Exchange has collaborated with SGS Pakistan for grading & quality certification and Pakistan Agriculture Coalition (PAC) for farmers’ awareness & trade facilitation to ensure the increased participation of farmers at the Exchange. The listed contracts are based on district Sheikhupura/Muridke, the major wheat growing districts of Punjab. Furthermore, on a similar pattern as red chilli, listing of this contract will pave the way for collateralized lending by banks against warehouse receipt instead of land papers.

Wheat is the most popular food crop of Pakistan and its products are used in a number of ways. Pakistan is the world’s 7th largest wheat producer and its contribution is 3.48% of world production. Being the staple diet of majority of people in Pakistan, it dominates all crops in acreage and production. Wheat accounts for 9.9 percent of the value added in agriculture and 2.0% of GDP of Pakistan. Punjab is the major wheat producing province of Pakistan and it alone contributes around 75 % of total production followed by Sindh 16 % and remaining 9 % from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan.

At the launch of the Wheat Contract, Ejaz Ali Shah, Managing Director, PMEX said, “Launching of Wheat Futures at the Exchange brings us one step closer of our resolve to connect our business operations to the local economy. With the availability of this new contract, it would become convenient for market participants to trade in a unified and transparent manner. The national level participation of buyers and sellers across Pakistan will enhance the price discovery process of the commodity manifold, bring efficiency in the quality production and provide an opportunity to farmers to get a better price of their produce.”

MCB BANK LAUNCHES ITS SECOND DIGITAL LOUNGE

MCB Bank, “Best Bank in Pakistan” proudly inaugurated its second State-of-the-Art Digital Lounge at Pakistan’s premiere Retail Complex, Emporium Mall, Lahore. Among many advanced digital facilities, the new Digital Lounge features a Video Contact Center, Interactive Digital Interfaces, Customer Information and Facilitation Services along with Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), Cash Deposit Machines (CDMs) and an Internet/Mobile Banking Kiosk.

Informative touch screens located at multiple contact points throughout the Sub-branch also serve to educate and inform customers on the Bank’s innovative products and services. The Digital lounge is a Sub-branch of a full scale banking branch at Emporium Mall which serves 7 days a week throughout Mall timings.

The launch ceremony was attended by Mr. Mian Mohammad Mansha, Chairman MCB Bank, ?Mrs. Naz Mansha, Director DG Khan Cement, Mr. Mian Hassan Mansha, Chairman Lalpir Power Ltd., Ms. Iqraa Mansha, CEO Nishat Hospitality (Pvt) Ltd., Mr. Imran Maqbool, President & CEO MCB Bank and other senior executives from MCB Bank and Emporium Mall.

K-ELECTRIC WINS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AWARD

K-Electric has won the Diversity & Inclusion Award during the Global Diversity & Inclusion Benchmarks Conference (GDIC) 2017 held recently. KE was awarded for its Proactive focus on diversity and inclusion initiatives across the company in a sustainable manner.

K-Electric spokesperson described this award yet another testament to KE’s organisational transformation and said, “Diversity of talent, culture and experience at KE has helped foster an environment of innovation while contributing significantly to improved organizational performance. We will continue to provide equal work opportunities so that all employees can work together towards sustainable growth.”

It is pertinent to note that the power utility has female representation in all areas of its business ranging from power generation plants to business finance and supply chain to transmission. KE also supports working mothers in continuing their professional growth through a ’Childcare Assistance’ policy and maternity leaves to up to 6 months designed to ease their transition back into the workplace.

Over the years, KE has created various powerful platforms to encourage women including extending support to APWA Rana Liaquat Craftsmen Colony (RLCC) through its Social Investment Programme and sponsoring the Girl’s Boxing Championship etc. KE also organize events such as Annual Women’s Day Celebrations, Quarterly Women’s Forum and Annual Sports events to name a few. Moreover, KE’s Pilgrimage policy is open to all employees regardless of their religion or position to ensure inclusivity among employees. A key outcome of all these efforts is the substantial increase in KE’s gender diversity and the higher number of women in leadership roles.

 

WWF CERTIFIES JS BANK AS THE FIRST COMMERCIAL BANK

JS Bank became the first commercial bank in Pakistan to be certified by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF Pakistan) for their Green Office Initiative. The aim of this Initiative is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to decrease the ecological footprint at the workplace through various initiatives such as reducing electricity consumption and paper waste.

As a part of the certification process, WWF undertook a comprehensive audit using stringent guidelines to check all the processes and procedures adopted by JS Bank for energy conversation & waste management at its head office. The Bank successfully met all the requirements set by WWF and was then declared as being Green Office certified.

JS Bank has always strived to benefit the country and its citizens through various green initiatives leading to an environmentally sustainable planet from converting more than 100 of its branches to solar energy to supporting tree plantations. This and many more environmental and social activities are done along with many other philanthropic activities through its charitable arm, Mahvash & Jahangir Siddiqui Foundation (MJSF).

JS Bank is one of the fastest growing banks in Pakistan, with 307 branches in 152 cities including one international branch. JS Bank is part of JS Group, one of Pakistan’s most diversified and progressive financial services groups. For more information, visit www.jsbl.com

JAZZCASH TO DISBURSE STIPENDS TO FEMALE STUDENTS OF GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS

The Reform Support Unit (RSU), School Education Department, Government of Sindh have a mandate to disburse stipends to female students of Sind. A signing ceremony was held at a local Hotel in Karachi today to award the contract for disbursement of these bursaries to JAZZ CASH. Payments will be made in two streams of Rs. 3,500 and Rs. 2,500 in 45 Talukas and 76 Talukas respectively where the transition rate is low.

Speaking on the occasion His Excellency Jam Mehtab Hussain Dahar, the Honourable Minister of Education Sindh said “This initiative is reflective of the Government of Sindh’s commitment to increase the enrollment of girls in schools at the Secondary level. Investing in girls’ education is a strategic development priority as it pays huge dividends for a society. It was Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Shaheed’s dream that all girls should be educated, and we are working to realize it”

On this occasion, Secretary School Education Abdul Aziz Uqaili said that timely delivery was critical to girls’ stipend disbursement. The Government of Sind was aware of this and has been making disbursements through ATM cards, pin mailers and SMS. “This year we are going a step further and will disburse the stipends through JAZZCASH biometric verification to ensure it reaches the right family.”

Chief Program Manager of RSU, Faisal Ahmed Uqaili said “Approximately 300,000 girls’ students receive stipends annually after the data received from the school principals is scrutinized and verified independently to ensure transparency.

“Jazz, as a socially-responsible corporation, has always been at the forefront of supporting programs that have a positive social impact. Jazz believes in promoting diversity and inclusiveness and this is reflected in out products as well. JAZZ CASH will be the enabler that gives 600,000 girls access to education. Our partnership with RSU Sindh showcases our commitment to bridging the education divide in this country, and empowering women for a better tomorrow,” said Faisal Sattar, Head of Business Services Division at Jazz.

Jazzcash

A mobile financial service offering under Jazz’s ecosystem, has over 70,000 retail outlets across Pakistan. JazzCash offers a broad portfolio of branchless banking services for customers including money transfer, bill payments, bank transfers, mobile accounts services, ATM cards, insurance, savings, payment gateway and payments for a variety of services.

LAPTOP DISTRIBUTION CEREMONY.

Twenty-five meritorious IBA students were awarded laptops under the Prime Minister’s Laptop Scheme. The ceremony, at Governor House was marked by the presence of His Excellency Mr. Mohammad Zubair – Governor Sindh who was also the Chief Guest, Mr. Javed Ali Memon – HEC Director of the Regional Centre Karachi, Dr. Sayeed Ghani – Acting Dean & Director IBA and many other esteemed guests.

Followed by Tilawat and the National Anthem, Dr. Sayeed Ghani, Acting Dean & Director IBA commenced the event with his welcome note, “On behalf of the IBA family, I welcome His Excellency Mr. Mohammad Zubair, the Governor of Sindh; Mr. Javed Ali Memon, the HEC Director of the Regional Centre Karachi, Mr. Shahid Shafiq from IBA’s Board of Governors and distinguished guests. I congratulate the 25 students of IBA, selected from 310 students from different disciplines (PhD/MS programs in Maths & Computer Sciences and various Undergraduate programs), who are awarded with laptops today purely on merit. I think that such initiatives by the government, assist learning in our youth and establish a culture of research. He also urged the students to use these laptops for the progression of their studies and the country. Dr. Sayeed also thanked Governor Sindh Mr. Mohammad Zubair and BoG member IBA, Mr. Shahid Shafiq for making this event possible. He also informed the audience about IBA’s journey from being just a business school to a mini university, highlighting the fact that IBA has introduced MS in Islamic Finance and will be introducing MS in Journalism this year. He proudly informed the audiences about IBA’s fulltime faculty being 100 strong, out of which, 60% are PhDs from leading global universities. He also expressed his gratitude to the Ex- Dean and Director IBA, Dr. Ishrat, for his magnanimous contribution to both IBA’s academics and infrastructure.

Addressing the audience, Mr. Javed Memon (Director Higher Education Commission Regional Centre, Karachi) said, “It is an established fact that a country’s economic development is determined by its intellectual capital. The significant results include that the percentage of higher education has increased from 2.6 percent of collage age students (17-21) to 8.26 percent in last ten years. On the directives of the Prime Minister of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Government of Pakistan has initiated a national program for distribution of laptops to young and bright students studying in public sector higher education institutes (HEIs) across the country. In this phase at IBA Karachi, we have planned to distribute 310 laptops. Also the laptops being distributed today have been assembled in Pakistan, which is a commendable success for the nation.”

The distribution of laptops to 25 students of PhD, MS, MBA, BBA & BS Programs was conducted by Mr. Mohammad Zubair – Governor Sindh, Mr. Javed Memon – HEC Director of the Regional Centre Karachi and Dr. Sayeed Ghani – Acting Dean & Director IBA.

Dr. Sayeed Ghani presented a token of appreciation to Mr. Mohammad Zubair – Governor Sindh.

Addressing the audience Mr. Mohammad Zubair- Governor Sindh said, “It is a pleasure to be a part of this laptop distribution ceremony for students of IBA, the institute of which I am a proud alumnus. IBA is a seat of learning parallel to none in Pakistan, with all the reasons to be proud of its glorious sixty years. It has gradually matured from an institute for quality education in Business to a seat of learning in Computer Sciences, Mathematical Sciences and Social Sciences. The Prime Minister’s Laptop Scheme, launched in 2013, is a manifestation of the government’s desire to adequately equip its youth to be valuable members of a global community driven by knowledge economy. Whereas the nation is still combating the conventional challenges such as terrorism, financial and energy crises; there has been a growing realization about the need of non-traditional solutions to these problems. Hence, it was deemed necessary to invest energies and resources to improve on knowledge capital indicators, especially among youth.” He also paid homage to IBA and its students and said that IBA was very close to his heart, and recounted fondly the memories of back when there was only one IBA school and it had just a 100 MBA graduates in a year. He said IBA was a premium institution of higher education not just nationally but globally, thanks to its graduates who have established and succeeded in Banking, Finance and Consumer Markets throughout the world and thus added to IBA’s credibility. He particularly congratulated the female students for their notable success in the field of education.

The students and esteemed guests were then gathered for an official photograph and the ceremony culminated with refreshments being served to the guests.

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