PBA en­cour­ages banks to fi­nance hous­ing sec­tor

The Pak Banker - - FRONT PAGE - KARACHI -APP

Pak­istan Banks As­so­ci­a­tion (PBA), a busi­ness lob­by­ing group, has given its sup­port for hous­ing and con­struc­tion fi­nance by banks, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment.

"Given its wide­spread ben­e­fits for the eco­nomic devel­op­ment of Pak­istan, PBA sup­ports the growth of Hous­ing and Con­struc­tion Fi­nance and en­cour­ages its mem­ber banks to view it as a sound busi­ness propo­si­tion," the state­ment read.

In its rea­son­ing, the PBA said that it be­lieved the sec­tor was a crit­i­cal con­trib­u­tor to the over­all econ­omy, be­cause of its mul­ti­ple link­ages to other av­enues of eco­nomic devel­op­ment.

How­ever, the PBA noted fi­nance for the hous­ing and con­struc­tion is very low in Pak­istan, and con­trib­utes less than 1pc of the coun­try's GDP; it is also one of the low­est in the re­gion and com­pa­ra­ble coun­tries.

This ac­cu­rate: Pak­istan's out­stand­ing hous­ing fi­nance is only 0.5pc of GDP, which is also known as mort­gage depth. Both Bangladesh and In­dia have a higher mort­gage depth, at 3pc and 10pc

is re­spec­tively.

The PBA wel­comed steps taken by the govern­ment and the State Bank of Pak­istan (SBP) to grow the hous­ing and fi­nance sec­tor. These steps in­clude low­in­ter­est rates, more ef­fec­tive fore­clo­sure laws and con­struc­tion be­ing ac­corded an ' in­dus­try' sta­tus.

"While there are still a few un­re­solved is­sues which are be­ing ac­tively worked upon, PBA be­lieves it is a good time for its mem­ber banks to see this as a growth area for fu­ture lend­ing on a se­cured ba­sis, with rea­son­able spreads."

When asked to com­ment on what those "few un­re­solved is­sues" are, PBA de­clined to com­ment, say­ing that it re­gards in­ter­nal sec­toral mat­ters still un­der dis­cus­sion.

ISLAMABAD -APP

Sadul­lah Tash­ma­tov, Charge’ D’af­faires of Uzbek­istan in Pak­istan called on the Ad­vi­sor to the Prime Min­is­ter on Com­merce and In­vest­ment Ab­dul Razak Da­wood.

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