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Shell Tameer celebrates International Women’s day at SOSTTI; mentoring women led start-ups

To mark this year’s International Women’s Day, Shell Tameer in collaboration with SOSTTI hosted mentoring circles for 14 female led micro start-ups that graduated from SoS Technical Training Institute Karachi last year.

The mentors being highly seasoned professionals; Rehana Alam, a renowned humanitarian associated with Behbud Association; Humaira Bachal, Shell Tameer Alumni and CEO of Roshan Pakistan and founder of Dream Foundation an inspirational educationist breaking barriers; and Shahnila Adnan, who runs a successful home business, shared invaluable advice and counselling to the female entrepreneurs on their new business set ups.

GM Retail of Shell Pakistan Ltd, Taha Magrabi, a patron of the Tameer program opened the event, “My heartiest congratulations to the inspiring entrepreneurs. Tameer means to build, that is what the program sets out to do – build on ideas, transforming them into profitable business ventures which uplifts their surrounding communities. One of our focus areas is empowering women, and we have seen the exponential impact an individual entrepreneur can make on improving livelihood for not just their families but inspiring others to pursue their dreams. I look forward to further strengthen our collaboration with SoS -TTI to create a bigger impact on the socio-economic front.”

As part of the enterprise development program, each student attends modules that enables the budding entrepreneurs to develop essential knowledge and skills required to start and run a successful, sustainable business. The series of “Build the Future Workshops” cover key topics ranging from market research and business planning to financial and human resource management, culminating in the production of a viable business plan.

Shell Tameer has been working for over a decade and has helped establish and expand over 1000 businesses and trained 12,500 people on enterprise development and will continue to support these graduating entrepreneurs with a range of post-startup services like; mentoring, incubation services, market access opportunities, etc.

Standard Chartered’s youth League on advancement stage

Standard Chartered has been sponsoring the Karachi United Football league for the past two years. The objective of the “Standard Chartered Karachi United Youth League” was to provide a platform for Youth football teams from across Karachi who came together, broke barriers and inculcated the spirit of competition.

A total of 720 boys’ and 80 girls’ teams participated in the league which kicked off at Karachi United Stadium in September.

A total of 800 boys and girls from across Karachi participated in this tournament. 128 matches were played in different locations including Old Golimar, Clifton, Malir, Baldia, Liyari, Korangi and Mauripur. Through this tournament 12 community centres were engaged.

The winning team of the SC Youth League U12 competition has been invited by the renowned Aspire Sports Academy in Qatar to participate in a tri-series international tournament. Aspire, as you may know, is Qatar’s national sports Academy.

Majority of its graduates play for the Qatar national football team which just was crowned Asian Champions.

This is a significant step for the underprivileged team and also for Football in general in Pakistan – to be invited to such a prestigious event.

Mutual Funds Association of Pakistan to launch Yearbook

Mutual Funds Association of Pakistan (MUFAP) will hold its 2018 Yearbook launch in Karachi this week. MUFAP is the trade association representing Pakistan’s asset management industry which comprises of 19 Asset Management Companies managing 281 Funds (in conventional and Shariah compliant range) with total assets under management (AUMs) of PKR 607 bn as of January 31, 2019.

MUFAP’s role is to deal with regulatory and government authorities to address obstacles in growth of the mutual fund industry, to ensure transparency and high ethical conduct and growth of the mutual fund industry through creating public awareness and education about mutual funds and pension schemes.

MUFAP’s Yearbook is an annual publication which contains industry data and statistics along with significant developments in the industry. The first publication was published in 2010 and over the years, the yearbook has significantly enhanced its quality and information and has established itself as a reliable source of information about the industry statistics and developments in the mutual fund and private pension industries.

Pakistan’s mutual fund industry has taken a giant leap forward over the last decade with the rising number of asset management companies, and size and number of funds. Moreover, the sector represents a strong presence of well-known financial groups, who bring professional expertise, risk management, large distribution networks and innovative product offerings putting the industry at par with its regional peers. Investor confidence remains high on the back of superior profitability delivered in an environment of fairness and transparency, through an effective regulatory framework. The future holds tremendous potential and MUFAP remains committed to its mission of raising the professional standards of the industry, improving public awareness and advancing the interests of all the stakeholders.

PMEX Continues on its Growth Path in First Half of FY19

Pakistan Mercantile Exchange Limited (PMEX), the country’s only multi-commodity futures exchange, reported record financial performance for the first half of FY19 since commencement of operations in 2007.

The Exchange earned profit after tax of PKR 38.817 million for the first half of FY19 as compared to PKR 12.342 million for the corresponding period of FY18, posting an increase of 214.5 percent. The operating income of the Exchange grew to PKR 171.391 million from PKR 118.732 million during the period under review, posting an increase of 44.35 percent.

The increased profitability can primarily be attributed to growth in trading volume, which grew to PKR 1,577.09 billion in the first half of current financial year from PKR 639.46 billion for the same period last year, posting an increase of 146.63 percent. The exponential growth in trading volume was the accumulative result of expansion of product suite, induction of new members and liquidity providers and introduction of world renowned trading terminal – MetaTrader 5.

Commenting on the financial performance, Ejaz Ali Shah, Managing Director PMEX, said, “We are delighted to report an outstanding performance in the first half of FY19. The results indicate that the positive trend from FY18 is continuing. We have become more focused and committed to creating a robust, transparent and efficient futures market in the country by capitalizing on our outreach, diversifying product suite and providing a state-of-the-art technology platform. We are thankful to Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) and Board of Directors of PMEX for their support and guidance.”

KMBL Collaborates with NAVTTC to Empower Women

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Khushhali Microfinance Bank (KMBL) is collaborating with National Vocational and Technical Training Commission (NAVTTC) to support skilled women. As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives, KMBL is providing startup award to top five position holders graduating from Batch-1 of Fashion Designing & Dress Making course conducted at NAVTTC. In this regard, a ceremony was held at the Corporate Office of Khushhali Microfinance Bank on March 6, 2019. The goal of this initiative is to recognize women who have talent and potential.

President KMBL, Ghalib Nishtar, distributed awards among the women hailing from different regions of Pakistan. The recipients of the awards included Tahmina Rafique from AJK, Iram Ilyas from Punjab, Jamila from Sindh, Tamkeen Munir from Balochistan and Yasmin Bibi from Khyber-Pakhtunkhuwa.

NAVTTC is a regulatory body for technical education and vocational training in Pakistan whose mission is to provide direction, support and an enabling environment to the public and private sectors to implement training for skills development in order to enhance social and economic profile. NAVTTC was represented by Syed Mansoor Ahmed, Program Coordinator for Prime Minister Youth Skill Development Program, and Masood Khan, Director General Admin & Finance.

About the collaboration, Ghalib Nishtar said, “Over the past nineteen years, we, at, KMBL have witnessed the difference women can make in their lives as well as the contribution they can make to society if they are provided with the opportunity to put their skills to economic use. Keeping that in mind, we have joined hands with NAVTCC on International Women’s Day to offer a helping hand to females who can become future employers of other skilled women as well.”

Founded in the year 2000, Khushhali Microfinance Bank Limited is providing a wide range of affordable financial services to various marginalized communities including women. From women in urban cities to those dwelling in rural areas, KMBL is providing its services to a number of women across the spectrum. More than 30% of the active clients at KMBL are females who have used loans to expand their businesses and improve lives for themselves and their families.

 

JS Bank Accredited by the Green Climate Fund

JS Bank has become Pakistan’s first financial institution to have been accredited by the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the world’s largest climate fund. The Fund aims to provide facilities to private sector corporations in emerging economies for limiting or reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through investments in low-emission and climate-resilient programs.

As an accredited entity, JS Bank will be able to apply for funding of up to USD 250 million per project. Currently, the Fund has 102 active projects worldwide and has a pledged total of USD 10.3 Billion. JS Bank can also mobilize additional funds from private sector investors to support action on climate change. In addition to opening new paths of local and international funding, the Bank can partner in contributions to climate adaptation and mitigation financing in Pakistan. This approval was based on JS Bank meeting GCF’s stringent criteria including fiduciary standards, environmental and social safeguards and specialized capacities in driving climate action.

As per the Global Climate Risk Index 2018, Pakistan is the seventh most vulnerable country facing long-term climate risk. Hence, there is an urgent need to embark upon multiple initiatives to mitigate the impact of climate change. With presence in 172 cities in Pakistan, JS Bank has a strong commitment to sustainable development and will continue working with customers, clients, businesses and the government to respond to the challenges posed by climate change. The Bank has a demonstrated record of undertaking environmental and social initiatives in the areas of clean energy, energy efficiency, transport and infrastructure.

JazzCash Partners with University of Punjab

JazzCash, the country’s leading mobile financial service provider, has partnered with the University of Punjab, a public research university, to digitize education payments to provide convenience to all students, parents as well as the organization, itself.

Jazz, as an organization, has always shown interest in the country’s youth and is always trying to find better ways to provide the youth with the best facilities possible to make their everyday lives easier. Not only that, Jazz is also unwavering in its quest to make Pakistan a digital country and thus is working hard towards the digitization of the country.

With this partnership between JazzCash and Punjab University, students, parents and teachers alike will face ease while handling their education payments. JazzCash aims to revolutionize education fee payments nationwide and this partnership is the 1st step towards this revolution.

Aamer Ejaz – Chief Digital Officer at Jazz stated, “JazzCash is creating an ecosystem with an increased focus on digital financial services[SAUHSK1], educational institutes and platforms. This partnership allows us to provide the youth of this country with an easy and quick way of paying their fees.”

He added, “At Jazz, our goal of digitalizing Pakistan is always our number one priority and partnerships like these help us get one step closer to reaching that goal.”

Dr Niaz Ahmad Akhtar – Vice Chancellor at Punjab University spoke on the occasion, saying, “University of the Punjab has taken the initiative to facilitate its students by using modern technologies. The agreement with Jazz will help the students for payment of university dues and fee without any trouble”

Students will be able to pay their fees through their mobile accounts as well over the counter (OTC) which will make the entire process of paying fees short and easy.

Balance for Better sessions held to celebrate International Women’s Day

Standard Chartered collaborates with British Deputy High Commission

Standard Chartered under its Diversity & Inclusion platform joined hands with British Deputy High Commission and celebrated International Women’s Day.

The theme for this year’s event was “Balance for better”. The Bank along with the British Deputy High Commission organised Masterclass Sessions which were conducted by leading women and men who were specialists in their areas. These masterclasses were attended by 100 girls and boys from O and A levels of leading schools in Karachi. The aim was to give the students access to successful professional role models to talk about their leadership and professional development journey to them.

Gender Diversity and supporting women at the workplace has been one of the core objectives of Standard Chartered and British Deputy High Commission.

Commenting on the discussion, Mr. Shazad Dada, Chief Executive, Standard Chartered Pakistan said, “At Standard Chartered, we strive to be a market leader in the Diversity & Inclusion space by helping women realise their full potential through personal development and supportive workplace practices. This year once again we have joined hands with British Deputy High Commission on this International Women’s Day as we celebrate a future in which innovation and technology creates unprecedented opportunities for women and girls to play an active role in the community in which we operate.”

Elin Burns, British Deputy High Commissioner, Karachi said, “Across the world, if women were operating at their full potential, and playing the same role in labour markets as men, an estimated £22 trillion or 26per cent could be added to global GDP in 2025. Championing the role of women and girls so that they can reach their full potential is a UK Government priority, and it is a pleasure to partner with Standard Chartered for an event which supports and engages students who are the CEOs and leaders of the future.”

FIRST Razia Bhatti Memorial Lecture held at CEJ-IBA

Veteran journalist and former Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) Chairperson, I.A. Rehman delivered the first Razia Bhatti Memorial Lecture titled Speaking Truth to Power: Why Razia Mattered at the Center for Excellence in Journalism (CEJ-IBA), Institute of Business Administration, Karachi.

Starting off the lecture, he mentioned, “Razia Bhatti tried to keep the flag of independent and fearless journalism flying at a time of oppression”. He further added that Ms. Bhatti had no tolerance for injustice or exploitation of the underprivileged, and was a feminist to the core. He added that she was a born journalist who was fully committed to her pen.

“Ms. Bhatti had only one regret,” said Mr. Rehman, “After resigning from Herald magazine in the late 1980s, she was not able to bring out Newsline during Zia-ul- Haq’s era.”

While speaking about freedom of speech, Mr. Rehman said that citizens in the olden days enjoyed the right to publish and news was not curtailed even at the time of war. “Freedom of expression has been there for several years but new laws are curtailing it,” he said adding, “before there was fear of enemies but now we fear our friends.”

The former HRCP chairperson acknowledged CEJ-IBA for its work. “Journalism is at its last catch and CEJ is working tremendously to work for journalism,” he lauded the center’s efforts.

One of the founding members of Newsline, Ms. Umber Khairi recorded a video message which was played during the event in which she talked about the challenges plaguing journalism in Pakistan. She described Ms. Bhatti’s valiant efforts to publish the truth.

Editor of Herald and member of the CEJ advisory board, Mr. Badar Alam also talked about the challenges journalists face today.

The Razia Bhatti Memorial Lecture series was set up last year by CEJ-IBA in collaboration with the Razia Bhatti Memorial Initiative to honour the pioneering editor. Bhatti, a former editor of the Herald, founded the journalist-owned publication Newsline with her editorial team in 1989, and was the winner of a number of national and international awards recognizing her professionalism and commitment. She died in March 1996.

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