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PTCL injects Rs. 4 Billion in U Microfinance Bank for growth

Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) has signed an agreement for PKR 4 Billion Unsecured Subordinated Debt Facility (Tier 2 capital) with U Microfinance Bank (U Bank), which is a wholly owned subsidiary of PTCL. This capital injection will enable the bank to further capitalize on the growth opportunities possible in Pakistan’s microfinance sector.

In the constantly changing competitive landscape, this Tier 2 facility will enable U Bank to expand its current customer reach for serving the under-served population. U Microfinance Bank plans to utilize these funds in its business operations and expansion plans. Serving its customers through disruptive innovation and digitization, the bank will focus on achieving its growth targets.

Not only will it enable the bank to utilize additional capital with flexibility as it grows, the debt amount will also contribute towards U Bank’s Supplementary/ Tier 2 Capital for Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) as per the guidelines for Microfinance banks that are set out by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

On the occasion, Dr. Daniel Ritz, President &CEO PTCL, and Chairman U Microfinance Bank, said, “Seeing the potential in U Microfinance Bank’s ability to further expand and grow, PTCL has taken the decision to further inject Tier II capital into the bank. This is in line with PTCL’s commitment to support Pakistan and its economy as a whole.”

Expressing his views, U Microfinance Bank’s President & CEO, Kabeer Naqvi, said, “U Microfinance Bank has been successfully enabling underserved Pakistanis and has been positively contributing towards poverty alleviation and economic empowerment. This Tier 2 injection is a testament to our sponsor’s confidence in our ability to deliver positive results. It also reiterates PTCL’s commitment towards contributing to the economic uplift & enablement of Pakistan.”

Currently, U Microfinance Bank serves more than 850,000 customers, where 22% of the served customers are women. By the end of 2018, U Bank’s deposit portfolio grew from PKR 11.97 billion to PKR 19.0 billion, while the loan portfolio grew from PKR 10.6 billion to PKR 17.0 Billion. Most significantly, the number of employees increased from to 1,321 to 1,980, where 9% of the total work force comprises of women.

PTCL & U Microfinance Bank are at the forefront of fighting poverty in Pakistan and will continue to play their role in improving the economic situation of the people of Pakistan.

About PTCL: Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) is the largest integrated Information Communication Technology (ICT) Company of Pakistan. With a humble start from a telephone and telegraph department in 1947, it has evolved to offer latest digital and telecommunication technologies today. It acts as the communication backbone for the country with the largest fiber cable network that spans from Khyber to Karachi and submarine cables connecting Pakistan to the world. For more information, visit www.ptcl.com.pk

About U Microfinance Bank: U Microfinance Bank Ltd. (U Bank) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL). The bank has a network of 141 branches in urban and rural areas of Pakistan, offering a wide range of microfinance loans, deposit products and branchless banking solutions.For more information, visit www.ubank.com.pk

Qatar Visa Centre inaugurated in Karachi

The second Qatar Visa Centre was inaugurated by His Excellency Mr. Mishal Mohammed A.A. Al-Ansari, Consul General of the State of Qatar in Pakistan. The opening ceremony was attended by Major Abdullah Khalifa Al Mohannadi – Director of Visa Support Services Department – Qatar Ministry of interior & Mohamed Ali Al Meer Labour Expert – Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs. Event was attended by a group of officials and businessmen from the Qatari and Pakistani side.

Work visa applicants migrating to the State of Qatar will be required to sign work contracts, enrol their biometrics data, and undergo medical test at the Qatar Visa Center. The center operates through an integrated electronic system to complete the enrolment of biometric data and required medical check-ups.

The application process for work visa applicants requires the applicants to;

  1. Get a visa reference number from the Ministry of Interior in the State of Qatar,

  2. Book an appointment by visiting www.qatarvisacenter.com and visit on appointment date Qatar Visa Center no earlier than fifteen minutes before the scheduled time

  3. At the reception, the identity of the visa applicant is verified, the list of required documents checked, and a token issued.

  4. Once the token is called, visa applicants are required to digitally sign their work contract, enrol biometric data and undergo the required medical tests.

  5. Upon completion of the process at the visa center, visa applicants will be able to track the status of the application online or through their employer in the State of Qatar

At this occasion, The Consul General of the State of Qatar in Karachi-Pakistan H.E. Mr. Mishal Mohammad Al-Ansari stated “In the line of achieving another milestone to strengthen the distinguished relations between the two countries and the keenness of the State of Qatar to furthermore enhance it to high level of confidence to work jointly for the benefits of two countries. The State of Qatar has decided to establish Qatar visa centre in 8 countries to simplify Visa procedures for expatriate workers. In the light of the long standing bilateral ties that exist between Pakistan and Qatar and as two countries that share a common ideological narrative, Pakistan has been selected as one of the first eight countries for establishment of such centres in the cities of Islamabad and Karachi. Through these centres, the Visa related procedures will be complete in the home countries of expatriate workers before their departure to Qatar unlike in the past where they took place in the state.

He added “This is in line with Qatar’s pledge to increase the number of Pakistani workers there especially the FIFA 2022 World Cup infrastructure projects that are a huge undertakings, requiring a huge influx of professional and semi professional cadres of Pakistani migrant workers”.

The Consul General also said that, “It is pertinent to mention the humongous contribution of Pakistani migrant workers to the development of the State of Qatar”.

He also assures that Qatar has always been committed to protecting workers rights. Consequently. The united Nations Agency, International Labour organization has lauded Qatar’s wide ranging reforms in this regard.

Conveniently located at Ground Floor, 37-B / Block 6 Main Shahra-e-Faisal – PECHS, Karachi, the visa center is equipped with state-of-the art biometric enrolment & medical test facility. The visa center is designed in line with international standards ensuring greater transparency, traceability and increased security for the visa applicants.

The center operates between 8:30 am to 4:30 pm from Monday to Friday. In consideration of facilitating procedures for Pakistani applicants, the first QVC in Pakistan was inaugurate on the 27thof December 2018 at Islamabad.

Some of the key medical tests to be conducted at the center include blood tests, x-ray, visual assessments, and physical examinations. The operations are backed by a team of highly qualified healthcare professionals with internal systems and processes based on the latest medical standards and best practices.

Qatar Visa Center maintains robust multi-lingual information services for the benefit of visa applicants across multiple touch points. Information on appointment scheduling, requirements and steps at the visa center can be found in English, Urdu and Arabic through its dedicated website

(http://www.qatarvisacenter.com), call center helpline +920 51 843 938 4, email Info.pak@qatarvisacenter.com and walk-in at the reception.

Call IT ’sin-tax’ or ’health tax’ – negative impact on farmers remains same

The Senior Vice President of Sarhad Chamber of Agriculture – Mr Fazal e Elahi Khan, while out rightly rejecting Health Ministry’s decision of merely changing the name of ’Sin Tax’ into ’Health Tax’, has declared that the tax-authorities are playing a cruel joke with the farmers.

He further said that; “It is not fair that the tobacco growers and smokers are being made responsible to pay for the health-insurance of 220 million citizens of Pakistan, in the name of Health-Tax. Providing health-facilities to the people is the government’s responsibility, so the regulators cannot put it on the shoulders of tobacco growers and smokers”.

“Can the smokers and farmers be held responsible, even if someone is suffering from dengue, diabetes or other any disease.” he asked. “The Health Minister should realize that the country cannot be operated in this manner. If the government wants to impose any new tax, then it should be equitably charged from each segment of the population, the agricultural sector refuses to bear this unfair discrimination.”

“It can be seen clearly that some NGO’s, who are working on the foreign agenda, have been misguiding the Health Ministry and the farmers are the ones bearing the consequences.” He said. The government is hereby informed that the poor farmers of KPK and all the stakeholders of the tobacco business will stand united against this unfair taxation and will make every effort to stop such unfavorable interventions, against the highest tax-paying industry of the nation.

He concluded by requesting the Prime Minister Imran Khan to dismiss this decision and have some mercy on the law-abiding citizens.

Pakistan’s tallest man critically ill, admitted to hospital

Pakistan’s tallest man Mr. Naseer Soomro aged 46years was recently admitted in intensive care unit, Darul Sehat Hospital with critically ill state. He is suffering from a lung ailment ( Interstitial Lung disease) which does not allow gaseous exchange in his body from atmosphere thus leading to severe oxygen deficiency and stagnant carbon dioxide. He was kept on ventilator for more than 6 days and after relentless efforts of ICU staff, doctors & support team he recovered well and was shifted to private room. In lieu of his ailment, he has to receive continuous clinical care with medical advice.

Darul Sehat Hospital management is rejoiced over his recovery and supports him in all available clinical care for his disease.

METRO Cash & Carry Pakistan Recognized as a Certified Top Employer 2019

METRO Cash & Carry Pakistan has been officially recognized by the Top Employers Institute as a Top Employer 2019 for excellence in employee conditions.

METRO Pakistan has always dedicated itself to providing the very best working environment for employees through implementing progressive ’people-first’ HR practices.

Top Employers are organizations of the highest caliber that have worked hard to create, implement and progress their people strategies. They provide an outstanding experience through strategic and thoughtful workplace programs which create an environment that empowers and develops employees.

The Top Employers Institute is the global authority on certifying excellence in employee conditions. Established more than 25 years ago, the Top Employers Institute has certified over 1300 organizations in 115 countries. These Certified Top Employers positively impact the lives of over 5 million employees globally.

About the Certification Program

As an independent HR certification company, the Top Employers Institute assesses participants through their global HR Best Practices Survey. In order to be certified, organizations must successfully achieve the required minimum standard as set out by the Top Employers Institute.

MCB Bank partners with Bank Al Jazira (Fawri) to launch international money transfers to Pakistan

MCB Bank, one of Pakistan’s largest & most innovative banks, has entered into an agreement with leading Saudi financial institution Bank Al Jazira (Fawri) for the facilitation of remittances to beneficiaries in Pakistan. Through the strategic partnership, MCB Bank will further facilitate overseas Pakistanis in Saudia Arabia to transfer remittances to Pakistan which can be received through more than 1,350 MCB Bank branches nationwide.

The agreement was signed by Mr. Sami Hamad AlRajhi, Head of Banking Services Group at Fawri, Bank Al Jazira and Mr. Muhammad Naeem Saigol, Division Head – TBD, MCB Bank, in the presence of Mr. Hassan Saleem, Fawri MTO Manager & Business Projects at Bank Al Jazira and Mr. Ziad Aftab Ejaz, Department Head – Home Remittances at MCB Bank at MCB Tower, Karachi.

Speaking about the agreement, Mr. Sami Hamad AlRajhi Head of Banking Services Group at Fawri, Bank Al Jazira said, “Fawri is one of the fastest growing money transfer services in Saudi Arabia, with Pakistan being one of our largest remittance recipient corridors. Fawri is very excited to enter into an arrangement with MCB Bank Pakistan and together both organizations will work together to make the remittance process streamlined at both the sender’s and receiver’s end.”

Speaking about the agreement, Mr. Muhammad Naeem Saigol, Division Head – TBD, MCB Bank said, “MCB Bank is renowned for its customer centric approach and makes every possible effort to exceed customer expectations through superior services and solutions. This new partnership with Bank Al Jazira, through their dedicated remittances division Fawri, will allow us to further diversify and expand our remittance services to the Pakistani community in the Middle East. This further strengthens MCB’s commitment towards inclusive banking and channeling of remittances though the formal banking network”

Fawri Money Transfer Services are an integral part of Bank Al Jazira’s Banking Service Division and provide international transfer services via different methods and local transfers within Saudi Arabia. Fawri partners with leading banks across the globe through a network of over 200 countries to facilitate remittances between the expatriate community living in Saudi Arabia with their countries of origin and other nations.

Jazz Launches B2B eCare Platform for its Corporate Customers

Jazz, Pakistan’s leading digital communications company, launched Jazz Business World, a new Self Service Platform for its Corporate Customers. The platform is an all-in-one application that provides online customer account management and support solutions to all business users.

With this platform, Jazz aims to enable a new digital support channel to its corporate customers that offers convenience, flexibility, efficiency and transparency while managing their accounts and services. Currently, the platform provides the authorized Jazz Business Account Point of Contact (POCs) the facility to view a summary of their Jazz account as well as securely manage them. They can also pay bills via the platform, check the usage of individual users within the company and their allowances while performing day-to-day account related operational tasks via the internet.

The platform also provides better and faster service with increased accountability online while also providing our customers with clear status updates so that customer service standards can be improved.

Aamer Ejaz, Chief Digital Officer at Jazz stated, “As a truly digital, customer obsessed organization, we are very proud to have achieved this big milestone. With Jazz Business World, we strive to serve our corporate customers, bearing in mind their unique requirements from Jazz: their digital partner. We will keep building on top of this platform and introducing new and better ways to help our partners in their business.”

Faisal Sattar, Vice President of Business Services Division at Jazz said, “In today’s world, it is imperative to offer customers the ease of self-servicing. Through this eCare Platform, our business customers can easily access their account information and support solutions, allowing them to save on valuable time, while being in control 24/7.î

The main clientele for the B2B eCare platform will be large corporations, business to government (B2Gs), POCs, small office home office (SoHo), small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and other corporate subscribers.

In coming months, Jazz aims to offer subscriptions of services, support and complaint management, analytics and recommendation engine, and workflows for customer side POCs using the platform.

President Inaugurates Jamil Naqsh Exhibition

President Dr Arif Alvi said that aesthetic expression adds more value to a culture, by raising awareness in the society about social-justice and harmony, quality of life, patriotism etc. He stated that rich history of South Asia and the centuries old traditions of Pakistan have grown out of the world’s oldest civilizations like Mehrgarh, Mohen-jo-Daro and Harappa. These ancient archaeological sites are priceless treasures for our nation and must be preserved at all cost. This inspirational heritage must also be shared with the global art community, by portraying it through artistic ambassadors, like Jamil Naqsh, he added. The President said this while addressing the inauguration ceremony of Paintings exhibition at Jamil Naqsh Museum titled “Fisher Woman of My Mohenjo-daro” today.

The President highlighted that masterpieces created by our contemporary painters, sculptors, writers, musicians, culinary experts and other artists are also appreciated globally, as these arts and crafts beautifully reflect the refined talents, scenic-landscapes and diversity of experiences offered by this land. He underlined that despite the exposure to technological advancements, professional migrations and geo-political diversity, our people have remained connected to their strong roots in this fertile soil. Our distinct culture has been nurtured with strong relationships of humanitarian love, while our food and flavours also carry the aroma of generous hospitality, he said.

The President also expressed his admiration for Mr. Jamil Naqsh -who has earned international fame along-with the “Pride of Performance” award in 1989 and the “Sitara-e-Imtiaz” Award in 2009. He added that his work depicts the different aspects of our society, with deep insights to enrich the minds of his audience. He stressed that we must take more opportunities to celebrate the accomplishments of our national heroes, who are portraying a softer image of Pakistan, with their great successes in every arena, around the world.

The focus of this exhibition is to highlight the lifestyle romantic charms of the Indus valley civilization, which continues to attract and amaze many great archaeologists and scholars of arts and cultures, from all over the world. One prominent element in the creative legacy of Naqsh, is the female face and form. He has now redefined the classic bronze sculpture of the ’Dancing Girl of Mohen-jo-Daro’ – portraying her as a ’Fisherwoman’. His theory is; “This civilization flourished along the Indus River, back in the year 2500 BCE, so their primary occupation was fishing”. This series of paintings also features other creatures and ancient composite artifacts of Mohen-jo-Daro, like the ’Fish’ and the ’Bull’, along with several ancient ’Scripts’ found in this archeological site.

Huawei Launches its Flagship Experience Store and HUAWEI Mate 20 Pro in Pakistan

The first-ever Huawei Experience Store opened its doors at Lucky One Mall, Karachi housing Huawei’s innovative smartphones, wearables, laptops and IoT accessories all under one-roof.

Huawei is ending the year 2018 on a high with the opening of it’s first-ever Huawei Experience Store in Pakistan. The store, located at Lucky One Mall, Karachi is the largest store of its kind – designed to give a complete flagship Huawei experience. It houses state-of-the-art infrastructure and provides all of Huawei’s innovative devices such as smartphones, laptops, smart watches, and other IoT accessories. The store is a focal point, where the HUAWEI Mate 20 Pro is debuting in Pakistan as well for PKR 159,999/-.

Speaking at the launch of Huawei Experience Store, Mr. Blueking Wang, Manager, Huawei CBG said: “We, at Huawei, are driven with a consumer-centric philosophy. Therefore, this first-ever Huawei Experience Store is one of many such Huawei experiences coming to Pakistan. We believe in setting innovative trends through our smart devices and this is another offering of ours to our beloved consumers. It’s time for everyone to adopt a smart lifestyle in 2019, and Huawei Experience Store is the place to begin it all.”

The company threw a grand New Year party at the launch of the Huawei Experience Store. Celebrity couple Mani and Hira hosted the evening where people danced to a scintillating performance by Khumariyaan. Everyone got a chance to win exciting gifts through a plethora of fun-filled activities. A flash mob was also organized with youngsters dancing to the tunes of the hit Nova Song, sung by Aima Baig – the brand ambassador of HUAWEI nova 3 Series.

The Huawei Experience Store also offers exclusive deals for people, with the New Year packages running up till 10th January, 2019.

  1. With a HUAWEI MateBook X Pro, people can get a HUAWEI WATCH GT – a smart watch that runs for two weeks with one charge.

  2. HUAWEI nova 3 buyers were in for a treat with a free HUAWEI Band 3e.

  3. For those who live life on the go, HUAWEI nova 3i comes packed with a complimentary power bank.

  4. You get a free SD card with the purchase of HUAWEI Y9 2019 to store more memories.

  5. With a HUAWEI Mate 10 lite, people can grab a pair of free wired headphones.

  6. A purchase of HUAWEI Y7 Prime 2018 comes with a foldable backpack.

  7. A free ring hook comes upon every purchase of HUAWEI Y5 Prime 2018.

Not only that, but lucky people also get a chance to double their purchases during this period. Recently, Huawei has received an overwhelming response from Pakistani consumers, making it one of the most recognized brands in the country. People came in droves to witness the launch of Pakistan’s first Huawei Experience Store, which shall also host activities and workshops throughout the year for its fans.

FWBL declared profit rates
Declared Rates from 1st July to 31st Dec 2018
Declared rates from 1st Jul to 31st Jul 2018 Declared rates from 1st Aug to 30th Sep 2018 Declared rates from 1st Oct to 2nd Dec 2018 Declared rates from 3rd Dec to 31st Dec 2018
Special Notice Time Deposits
7 Days SNTD1.50%1.50%1.50%1.50%
30 Days.50%1.50%1.50%1.50%
PLS Savings4.50%5.50%6.50%8.00%
Hyper Profit Scheme4.50%5.50%6.50%8.00%
Term Deposits
3 Months4.50%5.50%6.50%8.00%
6 Months4.65%5.65%6.65%8.15%
1 Year5.00%6.00%7.00%8.50%
2 Years5.25%6.25%7.25%8.75%
3 Years5.50%6.50%7.50%9.00%
4 Years5.75%6.75%7.75%9.25%
5 Year6.00%7.00%8.00%9.50%
Senior Citizen/Pensioners
1 Year7.80%9.30%
2 Year8.00%9.50%

Note: Profit Payment for TDR’s booked on or after December 01, 2015 will be paid on booking rate only. Booking rate means profit rate declared by the bank for specific tenor at the time of booking of term deposits. At the time of roll over prevailing rate would be applied.

If the TDR is prematurely encashed within three months of booking, profit rate will be applied as per booking rate minus 2.5%. Likewise profit will be disbursed to the depositor as per booking rate minus 2%, if TDR is prematurely encashed after three months of its placement.

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