Karachi (PR): National Bank of Pakistan’s (NBP) endeavor to uplift the economic condition of the common man and create more jobs for the unemployed youth of the country has come to fruition with their leading rolein the Prime Minister Youth Business Loans Scheme.
Another one of NBP’s persistent efforts was materialized on April13, 2015 where National Bank of Pakistan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Ghandhara Industries Limited (GIL) during a graceful ceremony held at NBP Head office in Karachi.
Under this arrangement GIL and NBP have agreed to enter into this MOU with a focus on development of small businesses for the educated andunemployed youth of Pakistan. The applicant will procure commercial vehicles offered by GILto facilitate his/her business activities and NBP will assist in financing the asset under the PMYBL scheme. This MOU between both organizations will assist applicants to develop their existing or new business set up.
The representatives of National Bank at this MOU Signing ceremony were Mr. Mudassir H. Khan – SEVP & Group Chief, Commercial & Retail Banking Group (CRBG), Mr. S. H. Irtiza Kazmi – EVP & Coordinator PMYBL, CRBG, Ms. Nageen Rizvi – VP & Unit Head Marketing & Promotions PMYBL, CRBG. While GIL was represented by Mr. Ahmed Kuli Khan Khattak – CEO, Mr. Iftikhar A. Khan – CFO & Company Secretary, Lt. Gen (Retd.) Ali Kuli Khan Khattak – Director, Mr. MuazzamPervaiz Khan – ExecutiveDirector, Mr. Pervaiz Iftikhar – Group Executive Director Financeand Mr. Imran Rashied – G.M Marketing.
The Group Chief and SEVP National Bank of Pakistan, Mr. Mudassir Khan stated that small businesses are vitalfor sustainable economic development forPakistan and for us to survive and exceed today’s globalized world. As the developing nations compete for greater market share globally, Pakistan must not to fall behind. Talking to a correspondent, Mr. Mudassir Khan said that according to SMEDA, SME constitute 90% of the enterprises in Pakistan; employ 80% of the non agriculture labor force and their share in the GDP is 40%. Pakistan has one of the highest SME startup rates in the world, i.e. approximately 8.5%. However, it also has one of the sharpest decline rates with around 50% of the startup SMEs losing customers and closing down within 5 years of establishment. PMYBL is the most significant initiative taken by the Government for the development of the SMEs andengaging the commercial banks to arrange the much neededfinancial assistance for them. It was felt that the survival of SMEs was mainly hampered by non-availability of credit facilities.
Mr. Irtiza Kazmi, Executive Vice President and the Coordinator for PMYBL stated that a known feature of SME sector is its ability to create multiple job opportunities. Pakistan faces a major challenge in the form of unemployment as its labor supply continues to grow rapidly with not enough matching employment opportunities.With a backlog of millions of unemployed persons, one can appreciate the urgent need for promoting small scale labor intensive businesses. On the other hand, owing to limited capital availability for business and that too at exorbitant markup rates, improving financial access for SMEs is expected to bring many benefits, including enhancing production quality, increasing new business opportunities, creating more jobs, reducing poverty, stimulating investment and mobilizing savings. All of this leads to sustainable economic development of the country in general and prosperity for the masses in particular.
Mr. Kazmi added that all commercial banks have the mandate to provide credit to SMEs and they have their special schemes in place for this purpose. Nonetheless, SMEs are generally found to have little or no access to institutional credit. Consequently,they have to rely on unorganized channels for their credit requirements. Credit supply is imperative for a number of activities such as purchase of essential inputs, access to better quality materials, which results in increased production and efficient provision of services. This is particularly true of small businesses which historically cannot even approach banks for credit facilities for fear of rejection and cumbersome requirements. NBP being the largest public sector bank has always led the way in penetrating the hitherto neglected market segments. While sharing the commitment of the Government towards uplifting the youth and providing them opportunities of financial independence through self-employment, NBP has yet again taken the lead through the PMYBL scheme.
Ghandhara Industries Limited (GIL), is a public limited company quoted on the Stock Exchanges and registered under the Companies Act, 1913 (now companies Ordinance, 1984). It was established in 1963 when Lt. Gen. M. Habibullah Khan Khattak acquired these facilities from General Motors and renamed it Ghandhara Industries Limited. The major business activities of the company comprise of progressive manufacture, assembly and marketing of ‘Isuzu’ trucks and bus chassis and fabrication of busesand load bodies. To accomplish its mission the company has a country wide dealers’ network for marketing its products. In addition the company represents its principals in Pakistan for other built up Products.
Ms. Nageen Rizvi, Vice President & Unit Head Marketing& Promotions – PMYBLstated that National Bank of Pakistan’s inexorable efforts to develop the impoverished sector for the unemployed youth of Pakistan is the core component of the Bank’s integrated community strategy. NBP is fortified with the alliance of GIL as apartner into the PMYBL Scheme. Both partners believe that this association will go a long way in bringing adynamic change in the small business sector and will provide further opportunities to the prospective unemployed youth.