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Metro Cash & Carry And P&G’ hope in alliance to provide clean drinking water

Leading up to World Water Day, Procter & Gamble (P&G) announces its continued collaboration with METRO Cash & Carry and Health Oriented Preventive Education (HOPE) to provide clean drinking water to Pakistani communities in need through its Children’s Safe Drinking Water (CSDW) program.

P&G announced its commitment for the fourth year of its disaster-relief effort through this partnership to provide 11 million liters of clean drinking water to Pakistani communities during the year, reaching an estimated 50,000 people in need. P&G also announced its clean water cause program running at all METRO stores in Pakistan from 17th March 2018 till 30th April 2018 enabling consumers to join this cause. During this time for every purchase of an Ariel, Safeguard, Pantene, Head & Shoulders, Pampers and Always product at a METRO store, P&G will donate the equivalent of 1 day of clean drinking water to the Children’s Safe Drinking Water Fund.

This partnership stems from P&G’s commitment to the provision of clean drinking water for communities in need which is in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal # 6 – to ensure access to water and sanitation for all. P&G, METRO and HOPE representatives came together at a press conference held at METRO Cash & Carry in Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Karachi, to raise awareness about the global clean drinking water crisis and reinforce their commitment to help save lives through the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water program.

On this occasion, Astrid Teckentrup, Vice President Sales, P&G, said, “Lack of clean drinking water is a problem faced by millions of people worldwide on a daily basis. Clean water providespeople the opportunity to move beyond basic survival and as a result, thrive, through improved health and therefore the ability to attend school more regularly and better economic opportunities, especially for women. We are proud to share P&G’s water purification technology to help transform the lives of people in need. Through the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water program over 876 million liters of clean drinking water has been made available to Pakistani communities in need, with support from our partners since 2005.’

She further added, “We are immensely pleased to have partnered with METRO Cash & Carry for the past 3 years on our Children’s Safe Drinking Water program here in Pakistan. Through the P&G-METRO-HOPE partnership, around 45 million liters of clean drinking water have been provided via P&G Purifier of Water sachets to disaster-struck families across the country, reaching an estimated 200,000 people with clean drinking water for 4 months. This partnership has reached families affected by the drought in Tharpakar, earthquake in the northern areas such as Swat, landslides in AJK and floods in Sindh, Punjab and KPK during the monsoon season. We are delighted that METRO has joined us once again, and encourage consumers to join is in this mission as well by participating in the P&G clean water cause program currently running at METRO stores.”

Sharing his thoughts, Mr. Marek Minkiewicz, Managing Director METRO Cash & Carry Pakistan, said:

“METRO is proud to be associated with P&G and its Children’s Safe Drinking Water program. METRO Cash & Carry employees in several countries are actively involved in activities to promote social and ecological projects under our global Corporate Citizen program Care & Share which was launched back in 2008. In Pakistan, under the umbrella of Care & Share, our purpose is to improve people’s lives, create awareness about global clean water crisis and motivate people to help provide those in need with clean drinking water. To support this year’s UN World Water Day, METRO is also running its own global “METRO Water Initiative” campaign to bring together all our water commitments and those of our suppliers just like P&G. It is our goal to use METRO’s direct reach to 21 million international customers, which translates to 1 billion end consumers, to increase awareness of the topic, and actively tackle the issue of water scarcity. Last year alone we collected more than 720,000 days’ worth of clean drinking water with the Children’s Safe Drinking Water program. We are proud to be partnering with P&G in this project as a part of our Care & Share program where we can help bring clean drinking water to children and families in the developing world.”

Dr. Mubina Agboatwalla, Chairperson HOPE, said: “Water is a basic human right. It is unfortunate that a significantly overwhelming number of people all over Pakistan do not have access to clean drinking water. We have partnered with P&G, through its Children’s Safe Drinking Water program, to make clean drinking water available to communities across the country in times of natural disasters and through social markets. The P&G-METRO collaboration for disaster-relief over the past 3 years has been a much-needed intervention which has made a positive impact in the lives of disaster-struck communities. HOPE remains committed to continue to facilitate P&G and METRO in its endeavor to help disaster-affected communities in Pakistan.

In celebration of World Water Day on March 22, P&G will also release a powerful documentaryin partnership with National Geographic to highlight the clean drinking water crisis and share the unique perspectives of three women from around the world who have benefitted from the CSDW program.

P&G’s Children’s Safe Drinking Water is one way the Company demonstrates it is committed to impacting communities around the world and working to be a force for good and a force for growth. Through the help of its more than 150 partners around the world, P&G has provided more than 13 billion liters of clean water since the program began in 2004 and is committed to delivering 15 billion liters of clean drinking water globally by 2020. Using P&G’s expertise in cleaning innovation and consumer research, P&G scientists packed the power of a water treatment plant into a simple four-gram packet. The technology is easy to use; with only a bucket, a spoon, a cloth and a small P&G packet, families can purify 10 liters of potentially deadly water in only 30 minutes. This is enough drinking water for a family of five for one day.

To view the documentary on World Water Day, visit the P&G YouTube page. To learn more about CSDW, visit www.csdw.org.

Pakistan’s has huge potential to meet world’s 90pc surgical instruments: Mian Zahid Hussain

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President AKIA, Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said Pakistan surgical instrument industry has the potential to cater need of World’s 90 percent demand, but this sector, due to lack of modern machinary and equipment and costly labour have threats from upcoming competition from China and Mexico; these countries not only have cheap labour, but also use superior technologically for innovation and better materials for manufacturing.

Mian Zahid Hussain while talking to the business community said from marketing to adoption of new technology. Marketing is a basic problem owing to a failure to develop local brands. Since 95 percent of the surgical industry operates in the SME sector, there is a need for a common facility centre to reduce the cost of production. Despite of reasonable growth in exports in the recent years this sector lacks product diversification, branding and effective marketing.

The veteran business leader said Pakistan’s Surgical Instruments are the most economical in the world coupled with unconditional guarantee of the finest quality. Pakistan has great potential to exploit the international market of surgical instruments as it has great workforce, talent, skills, resources, strengths and opportunities to make the way to success. Moreover, there is large scope of triumph in this market. Due to skilled and versatile experience the surgical instrument sector of Pakistan produces wide range of surgical products like Instruments for medical, surgical and dental, orthopedic appliances, Equipment using X-rays, alpha, beta, gamma rays, etc.

The former minister said Despite the fact that we produce an immense quantity of surgical items but still we are far behind in case of “Marketing” of our products to increase the trade round the globe. There is lack of presentation in our products in every aspect. Government must establish new training and vocational centers in Sialkot and its nearby areas e.g. Narowal, Pasrur etc. to provide requisite workforce to this industry with forcus to grab the international market according to the World’s need. Branding, Marketting and access to new international market is important and need of time, for which Government needs to take immediate measures, he added.

Mahvash & Jahangir Siddiqui Foundation Bykea to launch Bikers Support Scheme

Mahvash and Jahangir Siddiqui Foundation (MJSF) and Bykea Technologies (Pvt) Limited have signed an agreement to launch the MJSF Bikers Support Scheme. Through this program, bikers who register with Bykea will be able to apply for interest free loans and financial solutions designed specifically to help them increase their potential earnings.

MJSF, as part of its efforts to promote micro-credit and self-employment, will provide bikers with micro-credit facility with zero percent mark-up to enable them to obtain necessary equipment for enrolment with Bykea. This partnership will promote self-employment within the country, provide individuals the opportunity to use their skills to generate income and increase earnings for social growth.

As part of the arrangement, each biker will receive a smartphone, equipment and license facilitation whose cost will range between 6,000 – 12,000 PKR. The amount will be interest free and repayable over a period of 8 weeks. In the first phase, 700 registeredBykea users will benefit from this program. The overall program impact will be in multiples of the initial disbursement.

Working hand in hand with its development partners, MJSF is working towards building a sustainable social impact for the underprivileged segments of society.

Khushhali Microfinance Bank Selects BenchMatrix’s Solution to meet regulatory requirements

Khushhali Microfinance Bank Limited has selected Bench Matrix to implement an automated regulatory Compliance Management System that would help them ensure comprehensive enterprise-wide compliance effectively.

RiskNucleus® Compliance Management System’s implementation will enhance the monitoring of regulatory compliance policy through a complete automated rule book library mapped to key activities within the organization and enable effective compliance risk management, observation management and self-assessment.

Commenting on this, Ghalib Nishtar, President & CEO, Khushhalibank, said: “Khushhalibank is actively pursuing and investing in technology and solutions that strengthen Governance & ensure high degree of compliance.”

Khushhalibank is one of Pakistan’s leading microfinance institutions, with an extended network of 173 outlets across the country. Over the decades, the Bank has created a customer-focused expertise, backed by strong financial, operations and product management to invest in next generation financial and delivery management systems aimed at Pakistan’s rural and urban communities.

Bench Matrix is a leading advisory service and automated GRC solutions provider with a focus on developing practical and customized approaches to risk management for organizations. Their team has several full cycle implementation experiences in the multinational organizations with success stories in Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, France, Canada, and Pakistan.

JS Bank and Fetchsky enter into strategic partnership

Striving for ever greater technological innovation, JS Bank has signed an agreement with FetchSky whereby the Bank will integrate Pekaboo Connect into its digital assets. These include the Bank’s website, social media forums and its mobile application. A highly interactive and customizable digital services suite, Peekaboo Connectdigitizes the Bank’s product, service and discount offers as well as its location network with rich and standardized data and technology.

Utilizing Peekaboo Connect, the Bank has facilitated customer access to Loyalty offerings and streamlined offer management. By using technology features such as geo fencing, the Bank can customize its customer offerings based on purchaser preferences as well as locations. In addition, patrons can filter offerings based on their personal likes and dislikes using multiple navigation options. It also provides information used for completion of the purchase process such as locations of Branches, contact options, timings etc. Customers can also review and share feedback on their experience.

Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Imran Soomro, CIOJS Bank, said “This partnership with FetchSky aims to introduce innovative technologies and modules to enhance our customer experience.”

Mr. Mehdi HaryaniCEO FetchSkysaid, “Peekaboo Connect acts as a bridge between the Bank and third party online retailers to enhance their experience on the Bank’s digital platforms.”

Hubco generation capacity doubles after transformation

Leading investment holding company Dawood Hercules Corporation (DH Corp) has headed a six-year turnaround at Hubco during which the company invested in major energy projects augmenting generation to 3,276 Megawatts. The $3.5 Billion capital investment includes JV projects in the China Pakistan Economic corridor (CPEC) priority list and will enhance Pakistan’s national energy security. The value of Hubco’s stock price had appreciated up to 170% since 27th September 2012, when Dawood Hercules directors were elected to the board, with total shareholder return of 40% IRR.

Talking about the six years at the helm of Hubco, Hussain Dawood, Chairman Dawood Hercules and Hubco, said, “When we invested inHubco in 2012, it was to address a dire national issue – the shortage of energy. Our strategy was to develop ways for reliable and affordable generation of electricity, in line with the national vision for energy security. It was an uphill task, and we had to fix the basics first. Hubco’s leadership role in this sector is evident in the shape of two fast track power projects: a 2 x 660 MW imported coal based plantat Hub as a JV with China Power International Holding, and a 330 MW mine-mouth power plant in Thar Block II with China Machinery Engineering Corporation as EPC Contractor and equity partner. Both these CPEC priority projects have paved the way to encourage investment in the power sector as well as collaboration with Chinese companies. Hubco also is an equity partner with Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company. I am proud to say that Hubco is now poised to provide reliable and affordable energy to the country, and at the same time, transform the socio-economic landscape of the local populace in Balochistan”.

In line with Dawood Hercules’ standards of community development, Hubco has in place a robust CSR program focused on healthcare, education, infrastructure development and livelihood of the less privileged in Baluchistan. The multitude of initiatives includes an apprenticeship program for Balochi boys, a free 2-year technical training with stipend; 14 batches (168 students) have completed the course. A TCF school in Hub is wholly sponsored while another one is under construction. The company also sponsors government schools in Hub as well as provides educational materials and scholarships across the district. Hubco has 3-health centers in 3-neighbouring villages of Hub as well as mobile dispensary. The Company always strives on giving employment to the locals and encourages its contractors to hire local people.

APBF for taking measures as Pakistan debt repayment capacity weakens

The All Pakistan Business Forum (APBF) has asked the government to take immediate measures as Pakistan’s medium-term debt repayment capacity has been weakening due to government dependence on loans, increasing risks to country’s financial outlook.

APBF president Ibrahim Qureshi said that the government is mostly depending on non-tax revenue and borrowing to generate surplus budget, in an effort to keep deficit below 5.5 percent of the GDP during current fiscal year.

The government has recently revised the budget deficit target up to 5.5 percent of the GDP due to expected increase in expenditures after raising PSDP allocations ahead of general elections.

He said that Pakistan’s external debt and liabilities have already increased to $89 billion by the end of December and the figure is expected to significantly jump by the time the current fiscal year ends due to mounting external repayment and trade related obligations. He said that international agencies are also expecting no change in the country’s debt burden, stating that the overall debt-to-GDP ratio would remain at 69.7% – higher than the limit set by parliament for the government.

Ibrahim Qureshi said that surging imports have led to a widening current account deficit and a significant decline in international reserves despite higher external financing. FY 2017-18 current account deficit could reach 4.8% of GDP, with gross international reserves further declining in the context of limited exchange rate flexibility. This is equal to $16.6 billion – and far higher than $12.1 billion deficit that Pakistan has booked last fiscal year.

He said that the budget deficit is expected to widen to 5.5% of GDP this year, which is equal to almost Rs2 trillion and will be the highest in Pakistan’s history in absolute terms. The official target is 4.1% of the GDP or Rs1.48 trillion.

He expressed his serious concerns over the weakening of the macroeconomic situation, including a widening of external and fiscal imbalances, a decline in foreign exchange reserves, and increased risks to Pakistan’s economic and financial outlook and its medium term debt sustainability as mentioned by reports of WB as well as IMF.

He called on the authorities to strengthen fiscal discipline through additional revenue measures and efforts to contain current expenditure while protecting pro poor spending. He emphasized the need for prudent debt management and caution in phasing in new external liabilities, and the urgency of tackling rising fiscal risks stemming from continued losses in public sector enterprises.

He said that the government had restricted the budget deficit at Rs797 billion (2.2 percent of the GDP) during first half of the current fiscal year. The country’s expenditures were recorded at Rs.3180 billion as compared to revenues of Rs2385 billion, leaving the deficit to Rs797 billion. The budget is feared to go beyond 5 percent of the GDP. The government has once again revised the budget deficit at 5.2 percent of the GDP (Rs.1883 billion) for the ongoing financial year.

ACCA leads ’Collective Vision for an Emerging Pakistan’ increasing Pakistan’s ranking for EODB Index in top 50

ACCA Pakistan hosted the Pakistan Leadership Conversation (PLC) 2018 in Karachi on March 22, 2018. Pakistan Leadership Conversation is a critical forum for thought leaders to discuss important policy issues and in turn develop an actionable agenda to drive economic growth.

This year the conversations in Karachi were held around the theme, ’Collective vision for an Emerging Pakistan’ and these conversations are aimed to shape the future of the society and economy in Pakistan.

Two panel discussions were conducted in Karachi. The conference topics included; i) Embracing digital age & ethics: harnessing financial inclusion ii) Innovation and ERM: nurturing Pakistan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. The chief guest for the conference wasRiazRiazuddin – Deputy Governor, State Bank of Pakistanand he spoke on Ethics, Technology, Disruption, and Connectivity – An Emerging Pakistan.

Our panelists/conversation leaders were representatives from leading organisations in Pakistan with keen interest in the development agenda of the country. The keynote speaker addressing the topic ’Embracing digital age & ethics: harnessing financial inclusion’ was Nasim Beg – Chief Executive Officer, Arif Habib Limited. This keynote speech was followed by a panel discussion moderated byKhurram Shahid – Portfolio Manager, Acumen Fund and the panelists includedZeeshan Shahid, Partner Deloitte YousufAdil Chartered Accountants, Dr. Inayat Hussain – Executive Director, State Bank of Pakistan, MuzzammilAslam – CEO, EFG Hermes Pakistan Limited, ShehzadChamdia – Director, Pakistan Stock Exchange and Shaikh Salman, Partner Ernst & Young Ford Rhodes SidatHyder.

This was followed by a compelling discussion onInnovation and risk management: How to support the start-up culture?. The keynote speakerKhawajaTanveerSaleem – Chief Information Officer, Engro Corporation Limited highlighted that the government as well as private entities are taking a keen interest towards boosting the entrepreneurial environment in the country. He attributed this to the increase in the number of smartphone users and internet penetration across the country. This was followed by a panel discussion and the panelists included Syed Amir Ali – SEVP & Group Head, Corporate & Investment Banking, Meezan Bank Limited, Khawaja Tanveer Saleem – Chief Information Officer, Engro Corporation Limited, Syed Muhammad Shabbar Zaidi – Territory Senior Partner & Chairman, A. F. Ferguson & Co. Chartered Accountants, NavedHashmi – Director Finance Excellence, Unilever Pakistan Limited, Shazad Dada – CEO, Standard Chartered Bank (Pakistan) Limited and Ibrahim Kasumbi – Advisor & former Senior Vice President, Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

Sajjeed Aslam, Head of ACCA Pakistan said at the conference, “ACCA is known to be a strong champion of public value – acting in the public interest, promoting ethical businesses and growing economies. Sessions like these reflect ACCA’s commitment to knowledge sharing and capacity building. Pakistan ACCA Members have committed to drive 7% GDP growth. This would bring increase ranking of Pakistan in top 50 for ease of doing business and global competitiveness index in next 5 years by collaborating with government and private sector.”

First K-Electric girls’ football league inaugurated

A launch ceremony of the 1st K-Electric Girls’ Football League was held at the KPT Sports Complex in Karachi. The initiative makes K-Electric the first corporate entity in the country to organize an exclusive female football tournament.

Col (Retd) Younas Changaizi, International footballer and Ex-Minister Sports Baluchistan graced the ceremony as the Chief Guest, along with senior officials of KE, sports stars and media persons. The Chief Guest appreciated KE’s role in encouraging women’s participation in football, boxing and other popular sports at the grassroots level and said, “These girls have developed good techniques and all they need now is support and guidance to excel on an international level. I would urge other organizations to come forward and nurture the talents of these promising players.”

The tournament is being organized by KE in collaboration with Naseem Hameed Football Academy. Naseem Hameed is a Pakistani track & field athlete, who got the title of “The Fastest Woman in South Asia”, when she won a gold medal in the 100 meters race at the South-Asian Games -2010, held in Dhaka. Naseem Hameed commented; “It is heartening to see that a leading corporate organization realizes the great potential of female football enthusiasts in Pakistan, and it has launched such a resourceful initiative to prepare young girls for international competitiveness.”

The tournament kicked off with an exhibition match dedicated to (Late) Shahlyla Baloch – the young Pakistani forward who passed away in an unfortunate car accident. There are eight teams participating in the contest, from different areas of Karachi. These include; Naseem Hameed Football Academy, Aga Khan Gymkhana, Young Muslim Women Football Club, Marta Women Football Club, Karachi Kickers Football Academy, Mohsin Gilani Football Academy, Elite Sports Academy and the Social Bond. The event will conclude on the 26th of March, 2018, with a final match and a closing ceremony.

Head of sports & Sustainability Zehra Mehdi appreciated the enthusiasm of the contestants and said; “KE has a strong affiliation with sports and has always been at the forefront to nurture the talents of our youth – providing them with the resources, guidance and inspiration to gain sports-stardom. By organizing the country’s first corporate backed football tournament for women, we are creating a strong platform to harness the potential of these young female footballers.”

In 2016, KE also organized the first ever ’Girls Boxing Championship’. Creating various powerful platforms to engage different segments of the population, KE is empowering the youth and giving back to the society. Over the last five years, the continued success of the annual ’KE Lyari Football League’ has channeled the energies of thousands of football-enthusiasts and produced dozens of national and international players from this under-privileged community.

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