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Emerging technologies have enhanced the corporate and social sectors, further govt support necessary for continued benefits

Interview with Mr Hamad Rasool Bhullar, Analyst

Profile

Mr Hamad Rasool Bhullar got his basic commerce education from Hailey College of Commerce and later on pursued professional education at ICMA Pakistan, ICSP and ICAP. In addition to that he did some post graduate Diplomas in IT, Islamic Finance and MPhil in Finance. He worked for a firm of Chartered Accountants for almost 12 years till 2003 after which he has been working in both private and public sectors. He has the privilege to issue first Sukuk in Pakistani market. He has been involved in training, advisory and audit assignments in Finance since 1995, which lately became more focused in Islamic Finance and Economics locally and internationally.

HAMAD RASOOL BHULLAR: As a matter of fact, it has proved true in many ways as the people have become more resourceful, companies have become dynamic and quick in making decisions and reporting. Lots of mobile apps are being used by business house profitably, clouds computing, IT based Market and Customer segmentation. ERP and data processing have also developed auto performance evaluation and controls, which are bringing lots of fruits. Even it is helping in prevention and detection of frauds and other corporate crimes. However there are some negative aspects of technology advancements in corporate sector e.g. overdependence, loss of health and memory, personal relationships are being damaged. Ethical and esthetic aspects of personality has deteriorated.

PAGE: YOUR VIEWS ON THE USE OF TECHNOLOGY BY FINANCE PROFESSIONALS:

HAMAD RASOOL BHULLAR: Finance professionals of today are smarter, analytic and resourceful than our generation through the use of technology which has changed the skill sets of today’s finance professional as compared to 10 to 15 years earlier.

As you know that in Pakistan corporates are now required to publish their reports much earlier than 10 years ago legislation has changed. This change is not an option. Today’s business deals are being done on WhatsApp, email, and many other web based apps like OLX and other portals run by e-commerce. Documentation challenges have improved bringing innovative ideas in reporting and auditing as use of paper is vanishing gradually. One important thing which I want to suggest is that as the technology is saving time for us, let us use this saved time to develop and train our staff, our community and the new generation not only on technical aspects but also on behavioral and soft skills as well.

PAGE: ARE THERE CHANGES IN THE INVESTMENT PATTERNS OF THE INDIVIDUALS AND CORPORATE SECTOR DUE TO THE TECHNOLOGY?

HAMAD RASOOL BHULLAR: As the technology has changed the markets, unification of stock exchanges, access to new markets and development of e-based markets have changed the investments patterns of both the individuals and corporates. Advent of Leo currency and e-coinage (which is getting quite popular in EU) has evolved new control tools and legislations leading the corporate entities to become agile, flexible and quick responding. Above all, the cost of running the business has been reduced as shareholders are receiving no more printed annual reports and other data which are being sent-out either through CD or just the web link being sent for download. A variety of Investment evaluation tools are being used by investors and analysts, making decisions quicker, accurate and easier. All these things have brought positive change in the society.

PAGE: HOW WOULD YOU COMMENT ON THE SUPPORT/MONITORING OF THE GOVERNMENT IN TERMS OF REGULATION OF E-COMMERCE THESE DAYS?

HAMAD RASOOL BHULLAR: Practically speaking and given the circumstances of the business world and its controls, the need for control and monitoring is becoming gradually more complex and challenging for the governments. Especially the businesses in e-commerce portals and web mobile based transactions require much more effective and hi-tech tools for controls

Uber is a good example where they have brought about such a large network without owning any of the transport vehicles. This sector of Information Technology (IT) is creating lots of employment opportunities for the new generation. Visionary attitude and effective control systems are required, simply banning them is not the solution. Here it is the challenge for the government to discuss the matters with stakeholders and bring about the right solution for control as well as revenue generation. Same applies to many other sectors where controls are to be set-up. Government needs to bring the communities together and talk to them and bring about their solutions through the use of IT. Although a large amount of investment is already being undertaken in this regard.

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