ANNOUNCEMENT

 

Mar 24 -30, 2003 

 

CHANCELLOR PRESTON UNIVERSITY GREETS CHAIRMAN SENATE

Chancellor & President Preston University, Dr. Abdul Basit extended his warmest felicitations to Mohammadmian Soomro, Chairman Senate of Pakistan, on his election to the highest echelon of the Upper House of the country's parliament. In his message of felicitation to the Chairman Senate, Preston's Chancellor, Dr. Basit said his election to the Upper House of the parliament of Pakistan, as Chairman, reaffirmed the unwavering confidence that the elected representatives of the people of this country had in his capabilities and in his burning desire, so conspicuously demonstrated by him in

 

 

the past, to serve this country and this nation. He expressed the hope and confidence that Mr. Soomro would succeed in fulfilling his obligations as Chairman Senate, by always upholding the rule of law in all spheres of the legislative process. In his endeavors to attain this important national objective, Dr. Basit assured him of his own and his institution's fullest support and sincere best wishes.

UBL ANNOUNCES RS. 2.8 BILLION PRE-TAX PROFIT

United Bank Limited has declared a pre-tax profit of Rs 2.8B for the year ended December 31, 2002 - the first audited results since the privatization of the Bank. This is almost double the pre-tax profit declared for last year (which was Rs l.5B, excluding extraordinary items). The improvement is all the more impressive considering the high market liquidity and increased competition in the sector as interest rates continue their downward spiral.

The major driver for this increase is Net Revenue from Funds which has gone up by Rs 1 B to Rs 6.1B before provisions. The NRFF increase in turn has come mainly from lower cost of funds and the Bank's focus on low cost deposits. The non-funded income of the Bank has increased by Rs 0.5B to Rs 3.4B, signifying an all-round improvement. Provisions are substantially lower compared to last year, resulting in a net income growth of Rs l.9B (28%). The expense for the year shows an apparently sharp increase mainly because of an extraordinary reversal in 2001. After adjusting 2001 costs, the administrative expense for 2002 has increased by Rs 0.8B to Rs 5.9B.

Deposits grew by Rs 20.9B to Rs 162.2B (14.8% growth). This increase is mainly in the low cost segment. Low cost deposits have gone up by Rs 15.1B to Rs 94.9B (18.9% growth). Expensive deposits have grown by Rs 5.8B to Rs 67.3B (9.4% growth).

Performing advances have grown by Rs 2.1B to Rs 70.1B. Non-performing loans have reduced by Rs 6.1B to Rs 5.7B.

The Bank handled around Rs. 135B of import and export business during the year, an increase of 17% as compared to last year.

These results show that after comprehensive restructuring and subsequent privatization, the Bank seems poised to take its place as the premier financial service provider in the country.

 

 

UNITED BANK LIMITED & SWEETWATER INTERNATIONAL SIGN AGREEMENT

United Bank Limited, Sweetwater International and Sweetwater Pakistan (Pvt.) Ltd. (SPPL) have entered into an agreement for provision of strategic benefits to the agricultural sector in Pakistan through the provision of modern banking services in relation to SPPL's provision of sweet water pumps, utilizing financing from the banking/leasing sector. Present at the signing ceremony were Amar Zafar Khan, the President of UBL, Edward W.Jackson, the CEO of Sweetwater International, Shahid Waqar Mehmood, Head Commercial Bank, UBL and other team members from UBL. Mr. Shamoom Chaudhry, GM Financial Services and Mr. Ijaz Majeed, Regional Head Sindh of SMEDA were also present at the occasion. '

Under this agreement, Sweetwater and SPPL, manufacturers and suppliers of Sulphurous Acid Generator units, jointly agree to supply these units in Pakistan to farmers and UBL has agreed to finance the purchase of these units in most viable financing mode. The financing would be made either by UBL directly or through a syndicate of leasing companies or financial institutions. In case of a syndicate being formed, it would be arranged and managed by UBL. The Parties have also mutually agreed to collaborate together with SMEDA (Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority) to achieve the success of this Project.

After the signing ceremony of Memorandum of Understanding, Edward W Jackson, CEO Sweetwater International showed great enthusiasm about this project and said, "Sweetwater is honored to be partnered with a bank such as United Bank Limited in providing available financing to the local farmers. The progressive attitude that UBL has towards assisting the farmer is to be commended. Sweetwater shares the same commitment to help the Pakistani farmers that UBL has and is pleased to have them as their exclusive commercial banking partner for the wide scale implementation of the SAG unit throughout Pakistan". He also said, " Sweetwater believes that in working with UBL, this technology and the financing options made available to the farmer by UBL will greatly help to enhance the agricultural asset that Pakistan has to offer the world".

CATHAY PACIFIC VOTED AIRLINE OF THE YEAR

Cathay Pacific Airways' commitment in providing our customers with superior products and service has reaped rewards. The airline has been honoured as "Airline of the Year" in the 2003 Skytrax survey. In addition, Cathay Pacific was also named "Best Airline - Asia'' and "Best Airline - Transpacific" for the second consecutive year.

 

 

Skytrax Research is a UK-based consulting firm which conducts the world's "largest" passenger survey. This year, more than 4.4 million entries were received during the survey period between August 2002 and March 2003. Passengers were asked to give performance ratings for categories such as "Check-in- services, Airline Lounges, Boarding/Departures, Arrivals/Transfer, Cabin Seating, Cabin Cleanliness, Onboard Catering, Inflight Entertainment and Cabin Staff Service".

According to survey comments from Skytrax: "Despite difficult times the airline industry faced throughout 2002, it seems customers remained only too happy to make their opinions known...all credit to the final winner, Cathay Pacific, who eventually took the title Airline of the Year 2003. Having read through many thousands of comments made about the winning airlines, Cathay Pacific drew "considerable support for the quality of staff service standards" and "scored very highly for their front- end premium products".