NBP enhancing its penetration in market

A technical team of the World Bank visits NBP Head Office to look into various aspects of the country’s largest commercial bank in size.


Corporate Ambassador/KARACHI: The World Bank technical team visited the National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) Head Office to discuss the dynamics of Pakistan’s financial sectors, particularly the development finance landscape and the role NBP can play in this area. The World Bank Group is conducting this analysis on the request of the Ministry of Finance and the State Bank of Pakistan.
The World Bank Group plays a critical role in advancing development finance in Pakistan since it can leverage its financial sector expertise by holding country engagement and dialogue, financing and risk-sharing instruments, unique data-sets and research capacity, and influence with standard-setting bodies. Mr. Marius Vismantas (Lead Financial Sector Specialist) and Ms. Namoos Zaheer (Senior Financial Sector Specialist) met Mr. Rehmat Ali Hasnie, SEVP/Group Chief, Inclusive Development Group and Mr. Faisal Ahmed Topra, SEVP/Group Chief, Strategy & Development Analytics Group, discussed various initiatives planned by NBP for development finance and priority sectors including agriculture, SME, Housing and Microfinance.
Mr. Rehmat Ali Hasnie informed the representatives on NBP’s initiative to reposition itself and increase its market penetration and growth in the priority sectors of the economy.
The World Bank team appreciated the renewed focus of NBP and assured of its support for further development of these sectors that are essential contributors to Pakistan’s economy.

IMF package, lack of direction slowdown CPEC projects

In round-table conference organized by Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS), an Islamabad-based security think-tank, experts said that for just US$ 6 billion from IMF, Pakistan has practically wasted 23 billion dollars. They termed the slow down on CPEC projects as a result of Pakistan’s deal with IMF

PICSS pic1

Corporate Ambassador/ISLAMABAD
During a roundtable conference organized by an Islamabad-based think tank Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS) the experts on CPEC subject said that Pakistan lacks strategic clarity on CPEC which has resulted in slowdown in the overall progress of the projects. Raja Amir Iqbal, former President Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, who has recently attended a workshop in China was the keynote speaker during the roundtable while economic and strategic experts, businessmen, academia, journalists, international relations experts, researchers were among the participants including Chairman PICSS Major General (R) Saad Khattak, Dr. Azhar Ahmad head of department International Relations Bahria University, Brig. (R) Saif Malik, Head of Department IR MUSLIM University, Dr. Talat Shabir Director China Pakistan Study Center (CPSC) ISSI, Brig (R) Saad Muhmmad strategic analyst, Brig. (R) Ahtisham defense analyst, Abdullah Khan Managing Director PICSS, Wajeeha Butt, political analyst and others participated in the discussion.
The participants expressed serious concern over progress on CPEC projects. Raja Amir Iqbal said the Chinese have no strategic ambiguity while it seems Pakistan lacks strategic clarity regarding CPEC. Most of the participants agreed with the notion that we lack strategic clarity on the issue. A question was raised that whether the strategic clarity was a shortcoming or a deliberate plan.

Raja Amir Iqbal said that things were moving in right direction till 2018 but then things changed and situation is like a stalemate. He said that CPEC is our requirement and we need to focus on industrialization rather than thinking about transit trade and collecting just toll tax.
Brig (R) Saad Muhammad said that Chinese want us to avoid conflicts and progress but unfortunately we are marred with conflicts since Pakistan’s creation. Raja Amer Iqbal emphasized on developing strategic clarity among the various power circles of Pakistan so that Pakistan’s economy could be facilitated by the benefits of this initiative. The most important hurdle regarding CPEC is the difference of business ethics between Chinese and Pakistanis counterparts. However, we cannot implement Chinese business ethics in Pakistan as we have to develop things as per our own domestic requirements.
They all stressed the need to bring structural reforms in the political and economic sphere of Pakistan to get the benefit of CPEC instead of shelving various projects under CPEC.
Experts also said that for just US$ 6 billion from IMF Pakistan practically wasted 23 billion dollars. They termed the slow down on CPEC projects as a result of Pakistan’s deal with IMF.
One of the participant Abid Imam said that Pakistan did not need IMF package and should get out of it as soon as possible. However, Raja Amir contradicted and said that in his opinion Pakistan should have gone to IMF in September 2018.
Participants have raised the question of the worries of the local producers and their capabilities in the wake of this Belt Road Initiative and also the role of the external elements and their interests in making the pendulum swung the other way. No Progress on CPEC due to external pressure would cost Pakistan more than China.
Major General (R) Saad Khattak while giving concluding remarks said that there are people in power corridors who have their vested interests in countries who do not look positively towards Pakistan-China relations and in the presence of such people it is very difficult to achieve the dividends of CPEC properly.

Police-“Peace-Maker or Peace Breaker”

Police -Image 3


Zeeshan Shah


Karachi city has seen its share of challenges in the past. A city that was hit by a crime wave in the early 90s, succumbed to its intensity. High crimes, higher lawlessness, extrajudicial killing, political and religious unrest were some of the non-stop issues that plagued the city of lights. Karachi being the largest business hub and work station, hosts over 22 million inhabitants from various ethnic backgrounds, having migrated from all over the country with diverse backgrounds, seeking work and refuge. We saw the past, with accusations of abetting the crime, complacency and moral, social and above all financial corruption.  In order to clear the negative perception of the police, we needed positive “image –building”.

Police as Peacemakers – is the way forward. The objectives of the police as peacemakers to help create a pro-active civil society, ensure good governance, uphold rule of law, maintain transparency and help observance of basic human rights in society. Every day we come in contact with the police force, busy with many duties like regulating traffic, guarding VIPs, controlling crowds, escorting people to court, giving evidence, filing complaints or taking on criminals in the city. People have different experiences with the police, most being negative than positive. In reality, the police are public servants paid for by the citizens, hence their primary job is for the citizens, to protect, safeguard and serve them at all times.

The police has a duty towards the people. As responsible citizens, we must also change our perception and not fear them or go to them only when in difficulties. Both the people and the police have to work together as peace-builders. To see the police in a positive light, it is important to try and see them as “Peacemakers” .The government must take steps in building a more robust and active image of the police force by de-politicizing the force, making them more customer friendly. Core duties must be reviewed to reduce ‘divide’ between the average citizens and the police, due to a rising perception, that the police only protects the powerful and ignores the powerless.

Police powers must be clearly defined to benefit citizens and not intimidate them. The citizens must know that police is the first contact point in distress and emergencies, not the last . Each province has its own police service that is governed by each district. That is where the process must start and then cascade further down the chain of command. Anyone can become a police officer, after they qualify the physical and educational requirements laid down through initial assessments and a comprehensive training curriculum. According to UN standards, there must be 230 policemen for every 100,000 people. So we need bigger numbers.

Both men and women police personnel play the exact same role, without any gender bias, as we do need sufficient amount of female PO’s (police officers) to cater  to the growing needs of the women population in the city. Specific duties are assigned to every officer from a constable to the Inspector General of Police. Educating the masses requires a confident people-friendly police force in the city.

Meritocracy is key. We must let go of the “Sifarish” culture on postings and promotions.  We must have a defined code of conduct for police recruits by having yearly evaluations of their key performance indicators (KPI’s). Every city has a budget for the police, allocated exclusively for provision of police services. Proper documentation of that budget in a transparent manner must be enforced.


There is more sinister and more dangerous side to the police as well. Something that is common in our culture.  It is the reputational risk that is associated with the police every time we talk about them. Connivance, bribery, obstruction of justice, illegal kick-backs, kidnapping, torture under detention, rape and murder in the name of law and religion. The police have been known to assist criminals and have even been implicated in terrorist financing and extreme terrorist activity.

Police as peace-breakers. Peace is relative to each and every one of us at citizens.  We expect the law to be upheld by the police and not broken. We demand security of our families, our neighborhoods, our streets, our children’s schools and our women’s integrity. The amount of extra-judicial killings in the country supervised directly or indirectly by the police, still pose questions marks. There is a whole new process that needs to be in place to review the kind of police force that has been recruited on political grounds, bypassing all formats of merit that exist.

Case in point- there has been a significant in police corruption in the past decade in Pakistan, primarily due to politicization of the police, where politicians and bureaucrats have used influence the police department through nepotism and personal favoritism, by ensuring that the police-men are not hired on merit but are hired to work as their personal servants, assisting them in all kinds of illegal activities, even crimes.

One of the major breakthrough cases was of senior police official, who was arrested after being involved in a high profile killing of an innocent young man, falsely implicated as a terrorist and was exterminated by an official police hit squad, on the orders of a top man in the country’s structural matrix.  This has been going on in all parts of the country, where laws are broken by policemen who are under illegal duty of senior non-governmental functionaries, primarily members of political parties, members of national and provincial assemblies, senators and other heads of private organizations with connections with the higher ups in the system.

This has apparently lead to a major governance failure in the country, where law protectors have become law makers. The current governments primarily agenda in their first term was to enforce police reforms in one of the provinces, but the remaining provinces, including big cities like Karachi, remain under threat of this disease where the citizens are left at the mercy of the men in uniform, with extremely low ethical and moral standards.

Pakistan has one of the worst police reforms in the world and very little effort has materialized, due to major political influence of the elite and powerful, destroying the basic fabric of society at large.  We are at a point where the law is being protected and influenced by thugs, leading to extreme insecurity across the board. To take this massive initiative, we have to “de-politicize” the entire police network by ensuring that process recruitment, training and hiring procedures are ensured by senior officials of the highest personal and professional caliber. The core issue of “moral corruption” has to be addressed by the top leadership of the country, with zero tolerance for any and all corrupt police men who are law-breakers.







As Peacemakers, we need to ensure that we build trust between public and the police.  We also must see that the police force is given proper compensation, health and housing with other benefits, to motivate them to perform better.  CRPC (Code of Criminal Procedure), includes a set of rules for the police to follow- that applies for the victim and the accused separately. PPC-Pakistan Penal Code, includes certain codes of conduct that come under “crimes” or “offences”. Both have to be clearly explained to the public, to ensure a more peaceful and well-informed general public.

To become successful role models for the city, police as peacemakers must ensure that the public understands the law, comprehends it and follows it with complete confidence

Police must become good-will ambassadors for the citizens, especially to 65% of the “youth population” of Karachi and work as reliable guides and comrades. To do that, they have to ‘lead by example’ by ensuring that they themselves are well versed in communication and that they reach out to public with empathy and play their part in ensuring peace and harmony.

As they say, “A kind heart and a brave spirit goes a long way”. We need our police force as a brave, caring and determined unit. A truly amazing police force for the city of Karachi.

SBP reports over 50% decline in CA deficit

current account deficit down 50%

Corporate Ambassador

State Bank of Pakistan has reported more than 50 percent decline in the current account deficit in first two months of 2019-20. During July-August 2019, the CAD has dropped to 1.44 billion dollars, from 3.06 billion dollars in the same months in 2018. Thus in dollars, the country has saved 1.62 billion dollars current account deficit mainly through steady decline in imports in two months of this financial year. In July-August 2019 the trade deficit has plummeted to 4.6 billion dollars, from 6.78 billion dollars in the corresponding months of 2018.

Declining trade and current account deficit will ease pressure on country’s foreign exchange, exchange rate of rupee and minimize government’s dependence on borrowings in 2019-20.

NBP takes tree plantation to South Punjab

NBP tree01

Corporate Ambassador/Multan:  National Bank of Pakistan has promoted Prime Minister of Pakistan’s vision of a  “ CLEAN AND GREEN PAKISTAN”, in South Punjab as part of its resolve to support this mission and reiterate the Corporate Social Responsibility. National Bank of Pakistan conducted a Tree Plantation Drive in Bahahudin Zakriya University Multan.  Syed Farooq Hasan. Regional Corporate Head, Multan and Professor Dr. Tariq Mahmood, Vice Chancellor, Bahauddin zakariya University, launched the plantation of over 1150 Climate specific plants including Amaltas, Arjun and Neem which were specially bought from Pattoki and planted in BZU with the commitment that both these Institutions will keep on collaborating for this nobel and patriotic cause.

NBP tree1

NBP Corporate and Investment Banking Multan and BZU including Kashif Shamshad Ali, Muhammad Safiullah, Muhammad Khawar Saeed, Muhammad Umer Farooq (BZU), Dr. Aamir Nawaz Khan (Chairman, Department of Horticulture, BZU), Dr. Shaukat Malik (Chairman Institute of Banking & Finance, BZU) were present at this ceremony.


PICSS reports 31% decline in terror-related casualties in Pakistan


Corporate Ambassador/ISLAMABAD: Although the number of militant attacks slightly increased in Pakistan during the month of August, the number of casualties dropped compared with the month of July. An Islamabad based independent think tank Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS) in its monthly report revealed that the number of violent attacks increased from 12 to 18 during the month while subsequent deaths and injuries decreased by 30 percent and 13 percent respectively compared to July 2019.
Militants carried out 18 attacks across the country in August 2019 in which 24 people were killed including 11 security forces personnel and 13 civilians while 90 people were injured including 17 security forces personnel and 73 civilians. It has been observed that the ratio of casualties in security forces has been increasing recently as compared to civilian deaths.

A visible push by the militants is observed in different parts of erstwhile FATA in recent weeks. In August 2019, majority of the attacks took place in erstwhile FATA followed by Balochistan and KP. PICSS recorded eight militant attacks in erstwhile FATA in which nine people were killed including eight security forces personnel while 13 people were injured including eight security forces personnel and five civilians.

In Balochistan, militants carried out five attacks in which six people were killed, all of them were civilian while 43 people got injured in which two were security forces personnel and 41 civilians.

In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, four militant attacks were witnessed in which six civilians and one security forces personnel was killed while 33 people were injured including 27 civilians and six security forces personnel. In Islamabad capital territory, two security personnel were killed and one got injured in a firing by militants on the old toll plaza on I.J. Principal Road. The attack was first of its kind during last four years.
No militant attack was recorded in any other administrative unit of Pakistan including Sindh, Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
Most of the attacks were done by Improvised Explosive Device (IED).Ten IED attacks were carried out in erstwhile FATA, Baluchistan and KPK. While 3 militant attacks were done by target killing in Baluchistan and erstwhile FATA. There was no suicide attacks recorded in the month of august.
Rangers patrollingMeanwhile Pakistani security forces conducted 3 actions against the militants in three different provinces in which three suspected militants were arrested and four were killed. Majority of the arrests took place in the province of Sindh. Four suspected militants were killed in KPK.