AN OVERVIEW OF FOREIGN BANKS OPERATING IN PAKISTAN

SADAF AURANGZAIB, Senior Correspondent
Nov 06 - 12, 2006

The advent of foreign banks in Pakistan is not a new phenomenon; they are operating here for decades in different capacities. No one can deny the pivotal role they are playing in building up the economic infrastructure for the people of Pakistan. Here we are reviewing the major foreign banks operating in Pakistan.

STANDARD CHARTERED BANK PAKISTAN (SCBP)

Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan (SCBP) has become the largest foreign bank in Pakistan after its recent merger with Union Bank Limited. The paid-up capital of SCBP is the highest among all banks operating in Pakistan, which is Rs 8.9 billion, with ordinary shares of Rs 892 million. The second highest paid-up capital is of National Bank which stands at Rs7.09 billion. It has largest branch network and the biggest number of account holders.

Standard Chartered is the largest international bank in Pakistan. It is the oldest foreign bank, with a presence of more than 150 years in this region. Standard Chartered has 46 online branches in Pakistan.

It provides a variety of financial solutions in the markets it serves, which has propelled it to become a market leader in Pakistan. By continuously assessing clients' needs, the bank has been able to introduce innovative new products and channels.

What differentiates it from its competitors is the premium it places on service excellence. Central to this service philosophy is the consultative approach the bank takes with each customer. By getting to know the customer better, they can identify their needs and match them with tailor-made product and service solutions. Following are the services they offer:

Consumer Banking: The bank provides mortgages, credit cards, personal loans, auto loans, deposit accounts and wealth management products. In order to maximize customer convenience, it offers 24-hour phone banking, statements, SMS banking, ATM cards and VISA debit cards, as well as 46 online state-of-the-art branches.

Corporate & Institutional Banking: Corporate & institutional banking provides trade finance, cash management and lending services.

Global Markets: Global markets provide foreign exchange, interest rate management and debt capital market services.

ABN AMRO PAKISTAN

ABN AMRO was established in 1948 and was the first foreign bank to be granted a licence by the Government of Pakistan. With total assets of over PKR 66.5 billion, equity of PKR 4.5 billion, and deposits of almost PKR 52 billion, ABN AMRO is placed and well positioned as one of the largest foreign banks in Pakistan. They have posted pre-tax profits of nearly PKR 2.2 billion (December 31, 2005), and the ROE of almost 51% is amongst the highest in its peer group. Over the last four years, ABN AMRO has significantly enhanced its profile in Pakistan and is comfortably ranked amongst the top three foreign banks in the domestic market. The bank currently has a presence in four cities namely, Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Rawalpindi, with 458 employees country wide.

They offer their services and experience in Consumer Banking, Corporate Banking, Investment Services, Treasury, Cash Management Services (allowing customers to provide payment and disbursement instructions electronically), and Correspondent Banking (for local and international transactions).

A network of nine online branches strategically located in all the major cities supports an extensive and rich consumer banking foundation.

ABN AMRO provides cash management, trade services, custody and clearing solutions to corporate clients, financial institutions and public sector. It has the reach and expertise to manage the financial and commercial functions of both corporate and financial institutions effectively.

HABIB BANK AG ZURICH

Habib Bank AG Zurich was established in 1967 on a solid foundation of banking tradition that spans several generations. Traditional banking values set in the context of international banking has determined Habib Bank AG Zurich's corporate philosophy. With the motto of "Service with Security" the bank is providing for over 37 years a highly personalized service in operation, trade finance, corporate, consumer, private, retail and correspondent banking products. It has an international network of over 35 branches.

Their services include:

-Current & Deposit account facilities for private and corporate clients in all major currencies.
-Lending in the form of overdrafts, loans and other credit facilities
-Foreign exchange dealing in all major international currencies
-Financing of foreign and domestic trade
-Import and export letters of credit
-Remittances/ transfers of funds
-Financial services, including trade and credit information
-Issuance and encashment of traveler's cheques
-Safe deposit lockers
-Correspondent banks worldwide
-Credit cards
-Hongkong & Shanghai Banking Corporation

The HSBC Group, one of the world's largest banking and financial services organisations, had its beginning in Hong Kong more than 130 years ago. Today, the HSBC Group has over 9,700 offices in 77 countries and territories in Europe, Asia-Pacific region, the Americas, Middle East and Africa.

Headquartered in London, HSBC is one of the largest banking and financial services organisations in the world. With listings on the London, Hong Kong, New York, Paris and Bermuda stock exchanges, shares in HSBC Holdings plc are held by nearly 200,000 shareholders in some 100 countries and territories. The shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange in the form of American Depositary Receipts.

Through an international network linked by advanced technology, including a rapidly growing e-commerce capability, HSBC provides a comprehensive range of financial services: personal financial services; commercial banking; corporate, investment banking and markets; private banking; and other activities.

The HSBC Group has an international pedigree which is unique. Many of its principal companies opened for business over a century ago have a history which is rich in variety and achievement. The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited was established in 1865 to finance the growing trade between China and Europe.

OMAN INTERNATIONAL BANK

OIB started its Pakistan operation in April 1996 by opening first branch in Karachi. Oman International Bank came into existence on 1st January, 1984 and became the first 100% Omani owned commercial bank in the Sultanate of Oman.

They have 82 branches in Oman and four overseas branches at Mumbai and Cochi in India and Karachi & Lahore in Pakistan. These branches offer a variety of services and facilities to make customer's life comfortable and easy. OIB is continuously striving to improve, update and expand its banking network with support of its loyal clientele. OIB's main aim is to make banking a memorable experience for its clients. OIB is offering its services in retail, corporate and privilege Banking.

OIB is known as an innovative bank with a long list of firsts to its name, the first bank in the Gulf region to offer mobile banking service, the first Omani bank to issue a Visa Card, and the only bank in Oman currently offering unique phone banking service. At present it is also the only bank in Oman which enjoys the privilege of having a fully automated branch network.

OIB is now well poised not only to maintain its leading position, but also to be known as a total quality service bank that is committed to offering the best value to its customers.

DEUTSCHE BANK

Founded in Berlin in 1870 to support the internationalization of business and to promote and facilitate trade relations between Germany and other European countries as well as overseas markets, Deutsche Bank has developed into a leading global provider of financial services.

Deutsche Bank comprises three Group Divisions: Corporate and Investment Bank (CIB), Private Clients and Asset Management (PCAM) and Corporate Investments (CI). The Management Board of Deutsche Bank AG has as its prime responsibility the strategic management, resource allocation, financial accounting and disclosure, risk management and control of the Group.

Deutsche Bank is a leading global investment bank with a strong and profitable private clients franchise.

The bank has 1,058 billion in assets; 65,435 employees from 130 nations; and unparalleled financial services in 73 countries.

A leader in Germany and Europe, the bank is continuously growing in North America, Asia and key emerging markets.