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Sep 06, 1999

ZarAmaad 15th Draw Held in Sargodha

The 15th successive draw of the UBL ZarAmaad Scheme was held in Sargodha. Dr. Mohammad Asghar Choudhary, Chairman, Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education, Sargodha pressed the customary computer key to start the draw process. It is UBL's initiative to hold draws in different cities and on this occasion it was held in Sargodha and was well received by all.

ZarAmaad Inami Cheques are available in denominations of Rs.10,000 and offer 238 prizes every week. These include a Grand Prize of Rs. 50 Lakhs, 2 prizes of Rs. 5 lakhs each, 10 prizes of Rs.50,000 each and 225 prizes of Rs. 10,000 each. Cheques sold up to August 21, 1999 were eligible for the l5th draw and would continue to be eligible for successive weekly draws until encashed. Cheques sold after August 21 would become eligible for the following week's draw. Cheques may be encashed anytime after the issuance.


Governor at Hamdard University

There is a need for establishing direct nexus among education, research and industry.

This was stated by Governor of Sindh, Mr. Mamnoon Hussain, while addressing to the senior faculty members of Hamdard University (HU). He said that it was a great satisfaction that HU was promoting knowledge based education and committed for developing a linkage between industry and education.

He congratulated Chancellor, HU, Mr. Justice (Retd.) Ajmal Mian and Vice Chancellor, Dr. M.H. Qazi for introducing courses to equip students with the necessary skills to face the challenges of the next millennium. He hoped that the graduates of HU would perform their role for development of the country.

Earlier, Dr. M.H. Qazi, Vice Chancellor, HU, briefed the Governor about the functioning, ideology and aims of the university. He also gave an introduction of the various departments of the university and courses were being taught there.

Chancellor, Hamdard University, Mr. Justice (Retd.) Ajmal Mian, said that Hakim Mohammed Said Shaheed struggled for Islamic renaissance and the HU was striving to accomplish his great mission. He further said that university was keen in promoting modern tools of knowledge and entrepreneurship based education to ensure a better future for its graduates.

Later, the Govemor visited HU and its constituent institutions and expressed his best wishes for its success.


 Union Bank sold to Gulf investors

The controlling shares of the Union Bank Limited were transferred to Gulf investors by the Saigol Group.

The new Board members nominated by the Gulf Group were elected on Saturday, 28 August 1999 in a Board meeting of the bank in Lahore. The State Bank of Pakistan allowed this acquisition earlier in the week, after a thorough scrutiny.

The new members on the Board of Directors after the resignations of the Saigol Group's directors are: Mr. Moin Afzal, Mr. Muneer Kamal, Qazi Mazhar-ul-Haq, Dr. Salman Shah, Mr. Tariq Allahwala and Mr. Rafat Rizvi. Mr. Muneer Kamal, will be the new Chief Executive Officer of the Bank.

The purchase of about 50 per cent shares of the Union Bank by Gulf investors will further strengthen the base of the bank. Investment in the banking sector by a foreign investor also shows their confidence in the economy of Pakistan.


Shell's Seminar on Sugar Industry

In another display of bold initiative, shell Pakistan Limited recently hosted enlightening seminars for professionals from the country's Sugar Industry. Shell Pakistan Limited is the first organization in Pakistan to arrange such an event for this sector of industry. Conducted in four major cities of Pakistan, Shell's seminars on Sugar Industry were well attended and well received. About 350 executives and professionals from the sugar sector attended the seminars which were focused on specialized lubricants for the sugar industry, their uses, advantages and different cost-control methods that the industry might implement. These and other pertinent issues were discussed in informative presentations made by Shell officials.

The first seminar was in Karachi, followed by one in Lahore, another in Faisalabad and the fourth one in Multan. Each venue was decorated with sector-related backdrop and banners, specially designed folders carrying vital information about the Sugar Industry were distributed among participants. Group photos were taken of the participants with the Shell staff. An interactive question and answer session wound up the day's agenda, with energetic response from the participants, who had interesting inquiries and suggestions.

All the participants were also included in a lucky draw that entitled one winner from each seminar to a free round air ticket. The event concluded with the souvenir distribution, Shell Pakistan Limited is planning to conduct more of these seminars in the future for other industry sector in Pakistan.


Removal of the board of directors and managementr of BEL

The Board of Directors and management of BEL have been removed with effect from August 31, 1999 by State Bank of Pakistan under Section 41A & 41B of the Banking Companies Ordinance. Simultaneously, Mr. Majeed Uddin Khan has been appointed as the Chief Executive of BEL and has also been vested with powers of its Board of Directors till further orders.

The action has been taken after State Bank's routine inspection of BEL and subsequent investigation and report of the Standing Committee of State Bank of Pakistan established that the Board and management of BEIL were guilty of mis-management of BEL, concealment of information and falsification of the balance sheet, misreporting of data to State Bank, provision of loans without proper security, write off of loans without adhering to the due process, failure to comply with the instructions of State Bank and diversion for improper use of the instalments of LMM loans repaid by borrowers that should have been paid back to State Bank of Pakistan.

There is also prima facie evidence of criminal acts in violation of laws by Chairman of the Board (Mr. Rauf B. Kadri), Chief Executive (Mr. Inamul Haq) and Senior Executive Vice President of BILL (Mr. Ashfaq Yousuf Tola). Other officials and directors may also be involved in criminal activities. FIRs have been lodged with FIA against them for further investigation and criminal proceedings.

State Bank is in the process of lodging a separate petition with Sindh High Court for criminal proceedings against the Chairman of the Board (Mr. Rauf B. Kadri) and Chief Executive of BEL (Mr. Inamul Haq) under Section 83 of the Banking Companies Ordinance for concealment of facts and misreporting to State Bank.

State Bank has also directed all banks and NBFIs to transact business with BEL only under instructions and with the authority of tile new management. All employees of BEL have been separately issued instrtictions to work under tile new Chief Executive and have also been warned of swift and severe action under the law and rules and regulations of their employment if anyone attempts to conceal, distort or alter documents, data, record and financial statements.

The Finance Minister has been fully briefed by State Bank about its findings and today's actions have been taken after due consultation with him. The Federal Government has assured State Bank of tile support of law enforcement agencies in the matter.

BEL will continue to remain open for business every day as usual under the new management installed by State Bank of Pakistan.

Zubyr addresses MAP Meeting

"If we want to move forward we should encourage change. Progress and change should be in a controlled and measured way but always under the umbrella of transparency." This was stated by Zubyr I. Soomro, President United Bank Limited at a seminar hosted by the Marketing Association of Pakistan. The subject under discussion was "Role of the Banking sector in developing economies. "

Speaking on the Prize schemes brought out by the NCBs, he stressed that new money came into the banking system and was put to productive use. The customers were starved for new products and these schemes provided relief to them. The schemes also increased the savings rate as they attracted money from outside the banking system. He said that UBL will be introducing more schemes and products in the future, which will include cross border products and be more long term and would help in attracting more customers.

While concluding he gave the gathering a few guidelines which should be the culture of any banking institution for it to be a success. These are disclosure, which should be full and frequent, accountability at all levels, transparency in all rules and regulations and autonomy.

To a question put forward by a guest as to what makes UBL unique, Zubyr said, "It is our flexibility, the fact that we are progress oriented and customer focused".


SBP changes MTBs and OMO scriedule

In modification of instructions contained is SD Circular No. 02 dated April 13, 1999 it has been decided to change the schedule of Auctions of Government of Pakistan Market Treasury Bills (MTBs) and Open Market Operations of the State Bank of Pakistan as follows:-

A. Auctions

i. Effective from Wednedsy, September 8, 1999. Auctions of Government of Pakistan Market Treasury Bills will be conducted on altemative Wednesdays.

ii. Settlement will take place on following Thursday. In case Wednesday happens to be holiday, auction will be held on preccding working day. In case, Thursday happens to be a holiday, settlement will take place on the following working day.

iii. A tender notice, giving necessary information, will be published in daily newspapers preceding each auction.

iv. All approved Dealers can participate in auctions directly. Individual and corporate bodies can pparticipate through Approved Dealers.


Engro Asahi Polymer & Chemicals ltd Pays tribute to moin Khan

A function was held by Engro Asahi Polymer and Chemical Limited (EAPCL) at Karachi Sheraton Hotel on August 30, 1999 to pay tribute to Moin Khan on his memborable performance in World Cup 1999.

A Gold Medal was presented to Moin Khan by EAPCL after a video presentation on his performance. Zaheer Abbas who was also present in the function praised the performance of Moin Khan.

EAPCL is a joint venture company of Engro Chemical Pakistan Ltd., Asahi Glass Corporation Japan and Mitsubishi Corporation Japan. The company iss setting up a 100,000 tons per year capacity PVC Resin Manufacturing Facility at Port Qasim which is due to be commissioned by end of this year.


UBL and Ora-Tech Systems join hands

An agreement was recently signed between United Bank Limited and Ora-Tech Systems (Pvt.) Limited according to which UBL, a leader in branch automation, has become the largest licensed user of Oracle database in Pakistan. The agreement was signed by Shabbir Baxamoosa, Head, Computer Division, UBL and Syed Mohammed Asif, Executive Vice President, Ora-Tech Systems (Pvt.) Ltd.

UBL has a large number of branches, which use its Unibank branch automation. This agreement enables UBL to further expand deployment of Unibank Plus, its advanced banking application. UBL has embarked upon an aggressive plan to expand the number of computerized branches. It plans to use this new technology to speedily process transactions in its branches and to make a quantum improvement in their customer service quality indicators.

Speaking on the occasion Shabbir Baxamoosa, Head, Computer Division, United Bank Limited said, "As UBL is one of the oldest user of Oracle in Pakistan, this agreement with Oracle expands our technology capability and positions UBL to provide state-of-the-art facilities to its customers".

Ora-Tech Systems (Pvt.) Ltd., established in 1990, is the authorized multi-platform distributor for Oracle products in Pakistan. Through a network of offices in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad, Ora-Tech provides technical support, education, consultancy, development services and applications like Oracle financials in addition to Oracle products.

"Our outstanding performance in support facilities, commitment to education and ability to handle large corporate organizations across the country has been the key factor for United Bank Limited joining hands with Ora-Tech," said Syed Mohammed Asif, Executive Vice President, Ora-Tech Systems (Pvt.) Ltd.

Also present on the occasion were Iqbal Abdullah, SVP, Systems Services Dept., UBL; Ahmed Alauddin, SVP, Data Processing Manager, UBL; Aspy Fathakia, Chairman Ora-Tech; Bashir Ahmed, Country Manager, Oracle Liason office and Saqib Sabah, Manager, Marketing and Sales, Ora-Tech.


Gillette Pakistan's Impressive Financial Performance

Gillette Pakistan has issued the financial results for the half-year ended June 30, 1999, which reflect a very healthy growth. Sales grew by 17% to Rs. 232 million as compared to Rs. 198 in the same period as last year

The profit before tax is Rs 22.7 million, which is more than twice of Rs 8.9 million for the same period last year. This growth is reflected in the profit after tax, which has increased to Rs 19 3 million as compared to Rs 7 million for the corresponding period last year

Gillette Blue II, Gillette Sensor Excel and Gillette Series have been the prime contributors towards the overall growth. Gillette has also, recently, launched selective Parker writing instrument products to broaden the business base.

Mohammed Amin, Gillette's Chief Executive in Pakistan, commenting on the results stated: " We are determined to further reinforce sales and marketing activities with strong franchise building programmes and expect that sales of our products will continue to grow at the same pace in the second half. He further added, "in spite of the exchange devaluation and inflationary pressures, the company was able to increase its trading profit by 57%, primarily, due to improved sales mix. Similarly, the operating profit reflects an impressive growth of more than 100% as compared to the corresponding period of last year "

Gillette Pakistan is currently focusing on strong franchise building and creation of demand-pull, which is reflected in the increased investment in advertising, sales promotion activities and expansion of sales distribution network. Consequently, the selling and administrative expenses have increased to Rs 70.4 million in l999 from Rs 49.5 million in the same period last year

Gillette products have been marketed in the South Asia region since 1913. Gillette Pakistan Limited is a subsidiary of the Gillette Company. Headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts, the Gillette Company is the world leader in male grooming products, including blades, razors and shaving preparations and electric shavers. Gillette also holds the number one position worldwide in selected female grooming products, such as wet shaving products and hair epilation devices. The company is the world's top seller of writing instruments and correction products, toothbrushes and oral care appliances. In addition, the company is the world leader in alkaline batteries.