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PMEX posts highest ever profit for fy June-2019

Pakistan Mercantile Exchange Limited (PMEX), the country’s only multi-commodity futures exchange, has posted the highest-ever profit after tax for the financial year ended June 30, 2019 (FY19), since commencement of its operations in 2007.

The Exchange has earned profit after tax of PKR 52.347 million for the FY19. The operating income of the Exchange grew to PKR 318.976 million for the year under review from PKR 264.607 million posted for FY18, registering an increase of 20.55 percent. The trading volume for FY19 was recorded at PKR 2.912 trillion as compared to PKR 1.442 trillion for FY18.

This outstanding financial performance of the Exchange can be attributed to the several initiatives undertaken by the Exchange during FY19. These include enhancement of product portfolio, induction of new members & liquidity providers, introduction of Direct Fund Model that enabled traders to directly deposit and withdraw funds, improvement in customer support services and increasing awareness about the benefits of futures trading at a regulated exchange.

Commenting on the financial performance, Mr. Ejaz Ali Shah, Managing Director, PMEX, said that customer centric focus has been the key to the ongoing financial success of the Exchange. He further said that the canvas of the Exchange is wide and we are determined to create more opportunities for our brokers and customers in coming years especially with regards to the local commodities under the guidance of our Board of Directors and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan.

UBL celebrates 60 years of progressiveness and innovation!

It began with a vision — a vision of unparalleled progress and unmatched excellence true to the spirit of the era!

On 7 November 1959, Pakistan witnessed an event that would change the way we banked forever. It was not just the inauguration of UBL’s first branch at I .I. Chundrigar Road in Karachi, it was also the birth of the culture of service, a culture of innovation and a culture of financial excellence!

On 7 November 2019, UBL turns sixty!

Our customers, stakeholders and employees have been the driving spirit behind our continuous advancement and growth as Pakistan’s leading progressive and innovative bank. It has been a privilege to serve this nation for 60 years and we look forward to being a part of your life for many years to come.

Jazz utilizes IBM cloud-based analytics to personalize customer experiences

New solution enables real-time analysis of data and helps uncover customer intelligence

Jazz Pakistan’s leading mobile operator and digital communications company, has selected IBM Cloud and Analytics Solutions as key components of its digital transformation. IBM will build a private cloud environment at Jazz’s data center to deliver IBM Analytics solutions. Serving over 59 million subscribers nationwide, Jazz will utilize IBM Analytics to improve and personalize customer experiences and services.

Through this implementation, Jazz will be able to ingest and analyze data in real time from various sources, and in turn, uncover customer behavioral insights and make more informed data-driven decisions. As a result, Jazz customers will benefit from more customized experiences and engagements, such as more relevant services and offers based on their data and mobile usage history.

“Digital and data transformation is barreling towards every industry, and in this rapidly changing landscape it is inevitable to keep up with latest technologies. We aim to become a next generation enterprise characterized by the ability to fully exploit data using best-in-class technologies,” said Aamir Ibrahim, CEO Jazz. “Our partnership with IBM will help us in successfully executing against a more accurate and data-driven business strategy.”

“In today’s world, data is a fuel for innovation and success. Businesses can no longer afford not tapping into the intelligence hidden in their data,” said Ghazanfar Ali, Country General Manager, IBM Pakistan. “Through IBM’s analytics capabilities, Jazz will not only be able to personalize customer experiences and offerings but create new revenue streams.”

K-Electric board director resigns

Ikram Sehgal has resigned as Director and Chairman from the K-Electric Board, with effect from Nov 6, 2019, due to personal reasons.

Pursuant to the requirement of Companies Ordinance 1984 and KE Memorandum and Articles of Association, the KE Board of Directors (BoD) will appoint a new Chairman of the Board, at the next meeting of the BoD.

IBA and PEF ink MoU to facilitate students

The IBA Karachi signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Professional Education Foundation (PEF) for providing an interest-free loan facility to 15 undergraduate students on merit-cum-need basis at the PEF office, Karachi. Acting Executive Director IBA, Dr. Sayeed Ghani and Member, Board of Governors, PEF Mr. Ashraf Adamjee signed the MoU on behalf of their respective institutions.

Representatives from the PEF included CEO Mr. Shahab Rizvi and Assistant Manager Student Affairs Mr. Maarab Bashir, while the IBA was represented by Senior Manager Corporate Relations and Communications Mr. Haris Tohid Siddiqui and Manager CDC Mr. Danish Imtiaz.

For the next 5 years, as per the MOU, PEF will provide interest-free loans to 15 undergraduate students in the field of Business Studies and IT worth Rs. 70,000/- each and amounting to a total of Rs. 1.05 million every year.

Every year, around 4000 students are enrolled in undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate programs, out of which 1500 students apply for financial assistance. Although, all are deserving, due to lack of resources, the IBA is able to provide financial assistance to around 900 students worth Rs. 300 million. In order, to facilitate the rest, the IBA is partnering with various donors and philanthropic organizations to help its students concentrate on their studies rather than focusing on arranging finances.

ACCA seeks legal framework for businesses to flourish, economy must meet modern standards

The professional body for accountants ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is asking whether businesses and policymakers in Pakistan are compromising the performance of small business in a new report called ‘Building the legal framework to help business succeed’.

Whether through over-familiarity or lack of awareness, there’s a risk a key ingredient in the formula for success is being overlooked – the legal form through which businesses operate.

The report calls on government to put legal structures in place, so that all businesses can thrive and benefit from the support mechanisms available. It explores the following four key elements entrepreneurs and policymakers must consider:

Realising the returns: Success can mean different things to different businesses. The founder’s goals can range from financial security to ‘giving something back’, and increasingly entrepreneurs are looking to be measured on social and environmental goals alongside the monetary returns.

Investing into the business: regardless of the owners’ final aims, every business needs investment, and most will need more than the founders have saved. How that money is raised, and who from, will have wider implications for the rest of society. As technology changes the ways that can happen, regulators must adapt to new structures.

Legal characteristics and regulation: The defining legal characteristic of a business form will be whether the business has a separate legal identity from its owner. Who makes the business decisions, who will be liable if things go wrong, and for how much, are vital considerations for those in the business and anyone who might buy from, sell to or be employed by it. The frameworks need to be effective, efficient and trusted.

Administrative requirements: Aspiring entrepreneurs are often most concerned about the ease of starting up and the burdens of registration and the like. Advisers and existing business owners tend to be more concerned about the long term running costs of annual filings and reporting requirements. Policymakers though must address both, striking a balance between rigour and efficiency.

Sajjeed Aslam, head of ACCA Pakistan says:

‘Small businesses are the lifeblood of society in Pakistan, creating and sharing wealth at a local level. It is vital the health and sustainability of all that the right legal frameworks exist to enable every business to flourish. Building trust and managing risk are key elements in enforcing a secure environment for entrepreneurs, investors and customers alike.

‘Lawmakers must ensure the legal forms available reflect the needs of a modern economy. The roots of existing forms can be traced back hundreds of years, and while the concepts of trust and economic growth haven’t changed, the way we do it has changed beyond all recognition, and the pace of that change is accelerating. Having the right businesses operating helps governments in two ways: by deepening the pool of talent for procurement purposes and by providing social support and social benefits that the state might otherwise have to fund directly.

‘It is vital that government can encourage, protect and regulate effectively the talents as well as resources needed by businesses.’

This report builds on ACCA’s existing body of guidance for members. In addition to drawing on these previous publications, ACCA undertook a desktop survey of available business forms in nine jurisdictions (UK, Ireland, India, Pakistan, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Nigeria and Hong Kong), analysing the key features under four main themes: realising the returns; investing into the business; legal characteristics; and administrative requirements.


IBA, Karachi and Saaya health collaborate to facilitate mental health counselling

The IBA, Karachi’s Human Resources (HR) Department, in collaboration with Saaya Health conducted a session to focus on the mental well-being of the Institute’s students, staff and faculty. The discussion led by Saaya Health Counsellor Ms. Asma Inayat focused on strategies of stress management. The session was widely attended by the IBA fraternity, including students.

Director HR, IBA, Karachi Mr. Mashooque Ali Bhatti commenced the session by introducing the Saaya team. It was followed by Ms. Inayat’s talk which revolved around overall mental wellbeing. She discussed strategies of stress management, tackling challenges in our daily lives and developing resilience to eliminate negative elements. She also cleared common misconceptions about counsellors and encouraged students to reach out to them without the fear of being judged.

Assistant Professor Social Sciences and Liberal Arts IBA, Karachi Dr. Nadya Qamar Chishty-Mujahid talked about how students’ stress affects teachers as well. Emphasizing on the role of therapists, she said, “They are specifically trained to identify problems which may involve life risks. Therefore, it is crucial to seek help from them”

Towards the end, Co-founder Saaya Health Ms. Alizeh Valjee informed the students about the online counselling services that Saaya Health provides. She also emphasized on the services being free for the students and staff and also demonstrated the process to sign up for the counselling services.

The event concluded with Mr. Bhatti presenting mementos to Ms. Inayat and Ms. Valjee.

K-Electric holds 108th annual general meeting, declares profit of rs 123bn in fy-2018

K-Electric (KE) held its 108th Annual General Meeting (AGM) – FY 2018, at a local hotel in Karachi. The meeting was chaired by Ikram Sehgal, Chairman KE Board, with Moonis Alvi, CEO K-Electric also in attendance, along with Aamir Ghaziani, CFO; Rizwan Dalia, Company Secretary & CPO and other members of the Board and KE leadership.

KE’s performance reflected sustained improvement driven by an investment of more than PKR 44 billion in FY 18 across the power value chain. For FY 18, KE declared a profit of PKR 12.3 billion compared to PKR 10.4 billion during FY 17, resulting in earnings per share (EPS) increasing to 0.45 rupees in FY 18 from 0.38 rupees per share in FY 17. This was accompanied by marked improvement in EBITDA, which increased to PKR 32.4 billion (FY 17: PKR 25.8 billion), a 26% increase over last year. Continuous reduction in T&D losses from 21.7% in FY 17 to 20.4% in FY 18 along with higher units sent-out (16,580 GWh in FY 17 to 17,419 GWh in FY 18) are the major contributing factors towards improved financial results. The Company’s Contribution margin rose more than 11% to PKR 67.8 billion from PKR 60.7 billion in FY 17 and balance sheet continues to show consolidation with total assets increasing to PKR 474 billion compared to PKR 396 billion in FY 17.

Shareholders were told about prevailing challenges such as the circular debt situation, which remains a key concern and a severe drain on cash flows. As of September 2019, the outstanding receivables of KE have ballooned to PKR 214 billion on account of outstanding payments from various federal and provincial public sector entities and are nearly two times its payables of around PKR 117 billion. KE management also apprised shareholders about the company’s business plan and targets geared towards catering to Karachi’s increasing power demand.

The power utility continues to forge ahead in enhancing generation capacity, both through its own sources as well as independent power producers (IPP) and remains committed to continue to invest across the value chain, which will further improve operational performance, thus benefitting consumers. KE has already signed project contracts with Siemens AG and Harbin Electric International for setting-up 900 MW Re-gasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG) power plant at its Bin Qasim Power Complex and is also actively pursuing the 700 MW coal-fired plant being built in collaboration with China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC). However, the planned 700 MW coal-project awaits tariff notification from the Government of Pakistan, for which continuous engagement is being done to expedite the tariff notification process. Moreover, KE is also in negotiations with relevant stakeholders for import of 500 MW from the under-construction nuclear power plants KANUPP II & III. Construction of interconnection facilities will however, take at least two and half years once the required approvals for the project are received.

Shareholders were also apprised of the improvements made across the entire energy value chain through investment of more than USD 2.1 billion from 2009 to 2018, which includes the addition of 1,057 MW of power generation, 7% points improvement in overall fleet efficiency as well as a 15.5% points reduction in T&D losses. Apart from this, transmission capacity has been increased by 29% and distribution capacity by 60% over the same time frame. The USD 450 million TP-1000 project is on-course for successful completion. Under this project, seven grid stations and associated power lines and transformers will be added, resulting in the addition of over 1,000 MVAs to transmission capacity. To date, four grid stations have already been brought online, adding over 700 MVAs to power transformation capacity.

The company continues to invest in rehabilitation, upgrade and augmentation of its network, including the conversion of more than 7,500 PMTs to Aerial Bundled Cable (ABC) to combat the menace of power theft, which has resulted in more than 70% of the city and 100% of industries being exempt from load-shed. Safety remains a top priority for the power utility, both for its employees as well as its customers. In this regard, the company will remain engaged with all relevant stakeholders including policymakers, regulatory bodies as well as civic entities to cope with and overcome challenges that arise from a substantial portion of Karachi being unplanned and rife with encroachments, which are major factors in undermining the integrity and reliability of the power infrastructure.

At the AGM, shareholders endorsed the company’s financial statements for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018 and approved the decision to reinvest the profits into the business.

Tree plantation drive held at the IBA, Karachi

The Administration Department of the Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi in collaboration with the IBA Go Green Society and Hutchison Ports Pakistan organized a tree plantation drive at the Main Campus. The saplings of various trees including dates, tamarind, chikoo and neem were planted at the main campus.

IBA staff, students and faculty represented the Institute at the event, whereas CEO of KICT Mr. Raymond Ngai Man Chan and CEO of SAPT Mr. Rashid Jamil along with their employees participated in the tree plantation drive to make the campus eco-friendly.

Manager IBA Go Green Society, Saba Javed shared the details of the collaboration and said, “The event is a collaboration with two business units of Hutchison Ports – KICT and SAPT. It was the second collaboration between IBA and Hutchison Ports, following one in September 2018 in the form of a botanical garden in IBA.”

General Manager IBA Karachi Mr. Aamer Shabbir further expanded on the sustainability model IBA is following and said, “Our aim and model is to create a green and sustainable city. We want to be pioneers in this field. We want to link the world and connect the dots to provide a bright future for our future generations. It’s time that we give back to the society we inherited from.”

Mr. Chan expressed his gratefulness to IBA for allowing him to participate in such a great initiative and said, “At Hutchison, we have a deep rooted philosophy, we don’t (only) do just business, but also try to partake in projects to conserve the environment and inspire our staff to spend efforts in environmental conversation so that we can have a sustainable future, not just for us but the next generation as well.”

The tree plantation drive concluded with the attendees taking a tour of the botanical garden in IBA – a result of the first collaboration between the two organizations.

The IBA Go Green society has been actively involved in holding tree plantation drives for the past three years with its main objective being to promote sustainability and combat climate change. Team IBA Karachi has successfully planted approximately 3,000 trees in the past two years. It has collaborated with several organizations to promote its aim for a more sustainable city.

African Islamic finance market is emerging for Islamic finance

6th African Islamic Finance Summit SUCCESSFULLY HELD in Dar-es-Salam, Tanzania

AlHuda Centre of Islamic Banking and Economics (CIBE) is honored to organize 6th African Islamic Finance Summit in Tanzania. The event is successfully inaugurated by the esteemed chief guest H. E. Dr. Ashatu K. Kijaji (MP)- Deputy Minister- Ministry of Finance and Planning, Republic of Tanzania at Hyatt Regency – The Kilimanjaro, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania for the betterment of the socio-economic conditions of the rural and urban areas of the country. More than 20 international speakers are presenting their valuable contribution in the topics of discussion.

The banking and financial industry of Tanzania and the surrounding areas will actively participate in the conference to gain ample knowledge of the Islamic financial sector and solutions to the escalating problems of the society. The event is supported by SPM Consulting and London School of Modern Studies. Sponsors of the event include Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), Amana Bank, Tanzania, and International Trunkey System (ITS). Participants are high profile personnel for 20 countries e.g. from central banks, banking and financial sectors of Tanzania and rest of the African countries, microfinance and insurance industry.

Mr. M. Zubair Mughal, CEO, AlHuda CIBE (the organizers of the event) thanked the supporters and the sponsors in his welcome address of the conference for their continuous trust on them and the unprecedented support for the event that is much needed to achieve the milestone. Tanzania has a largely rural population, which makes access to financial services a challenge and digital solutions ideal. The World Bank reports tells that 70% of the population resides in rural areas, and Financial Inclusion (FI) data shows that less than one-third (29%) of the rural population have active accounts (used in the last 90 days), whereas urban citizens are twice as likely to have actives accounts (61%). Approximately 76% of Tanzanians live on less than $2 per day, with three-quarters of Tanzanians employed in the agriculture sector, according to World Bank data. Making gains among these groups is key to improving Tanzanians’ financial lives. He said that Islamic banking and finance is the best alternative to change the lives of the poor. Investing in Islamic Banking and Finance could mean greater foreign investment that could result in enhanced global connectivity, improved job creation, socio-economic development and poverty alleviation.

While speaking at opening ceremony, Dr. Ashatu K. Kijaji (MP), Deputy Minister- Ministry of Finance and Planning, Republic of Tanzania said, Islamic banking and finance is growing globally and Africa is also a good destination of it. He congratulated AlHuda CIBE for its role to introduce and promote Islamic banking and finance in East Africa. In the Inaugural Ceremony, Dr. Baghayo A. Saqware, Vice President, – Association of African Insurance Supervisory Authorities (AAISA), Tanzania said that Insurance industry in Tanzania is growing at fast pace and Takaful would be a very good value addition in it, which will be very good tool of financial inclusion and social development, and shared that Tanzanian Insurance Regulatory Authority (TIRA) has already been issued draft Takaful guideline for comments, and we are sure Takaful will be reaching to Tanzania very soon.

AlHuda CIBE arranged an impressive lineup of speakers from various nationalities with the revealing sessions on New Frontier Islamic Finance in Africa, Strategies to Tap the Untapped Islamic Finance Markets, Islamic Finance Developments & Advancements, Takaful, Sukuk and Islamic Funds, Development and Future of Islamic Finance, A new frontiers of Islamic Microfinance: Outreach / Challenges and Opportunities, Islamic Finance Potentials and Opportunities Islamic Finance industry. The speakers include Dr. Muhsin Salim Masoud — Managing Director, Amanah Bank Limited, Tanzania, Mr. Mohamed Issa Hemed — Secretary General, The Islamic Foundation, Tanzania, Mr. Yassir Salim Masoud- Secretary General, CIFCA, Tanzania, Mrs. Sabra Issa — Managing Director of Zanzibar Social Security Fund (ZSSF), Mr. Hany Mohamed Ramadan — Director, Banking & Finance Business Solutions International Turnkey System, Mr. Ibrahim Adetokunbo Onaleye — Professor and Managing Director Braton and Associates Limited Nigeria, Nigeria, Mr. Abdoulaye Ali Maiga — LSMS Research Scholar, Niger, Mr. Salum Awadh — Chief Executive Officer SSC Capital, Tanzania, Ms. Jemmila Asress — Global Insurance Company SC, Ethiopia, and many other delegates are participating in it to discuss the insights of Islamic finance industry.

The main objectives of the summit include e.g. recognizing significant developments in Islamic Financial Infrastructure of Africa, linkages of African Islamic Finance industry with international financial market, demonstration of the flexibility of Islamic Financial markets during recent financial crisis, share the best practices of the international Islamic banking market with African Islamic finance Industry, assessing innovations in Islamic financial markets through the growth of newly developed research based products etc.

The Conference is held followed by Two Days “Post Event Workshop on Operational Aspects of Islamic Banking and Takaful” dated for November 6 – 7, 2019. This Workshop will cover a variety of allied topics.

AlHuda CIBE is serving for the promotion of Islamic finance industry by offering its research, advisory, consultancy and capacity building services in more than 15 African-countries from last eight years. In this connection they conducted various capacity building and training workshops to build the capacity of local financial, banking and insurance professionals. AlHuda Center of Islamic Banking and Economics (CIBE) has started working on Islamic banking and finance research, advisory, consultancy and capacity building services from 2006 and now serving in different countries of the world. AlHuda CIBE has also conducted various capacity building and training workshops along with series of conferences including African Islamic Finance Summit.

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