National Bank, Chinese officials sign strategic co-op agreement
A delegation comprising of 45 Chinese Officials visited National Bank of Pakistan and signed a strategic cooperation agreement for provision of banking facilities by NBP to International Green Economy Association (IGEA) members.
The delegation was headed by Sha Zukhang, former deputy secretary-general of United Nations, president of Pakistan Friendship Association of China and Honorary Chairman of the International Green Economy Association. The agreement was signed by Deng Jihai, Representative of IGEA and GBO-Global and NBP President, Arif Usmani, said
NBP press release on Monday.
International Green Economy Association is a non-profit social organization operating out of Beijing, winning qualification of "4A evaluation rank" for Chinese social Organizations.
IGEA is committed to promoting green development. It has more than 5,000 members and cooperative enterprises in green manufacturing, green architectures, ecological agriculture, energy conservation and environmental protection, new energy, new materials and other green industries.
As an advanced professional organization in green economy. GBO-GLOBAL is the operating platform of IGEA, with focus on organizing Chinese enterprises to work with Pakistan.
NBP President also hosted a dinner for the delegates where selected corporate customers of the bank were invited to hold B2B meetings with the members of the visiting delegation. Business community from both the countries held initial business dialogue to create joint ventures and enhance business relationships.
Earlier, Chinese investors have expressed keen interest in pouring at least $2 billion into Pakistan's stock market. "Small Chinese stockbrokers having $52 billion in assets under management have shown interest in investing at least $2 billion in shares at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX)," announced PSX Chairman Sulaiman S Mehdi at a press briefing on Friday, as the bourse was being integrated with regional and international stock markets at a cost of $2.85 million.
The Chinese investors expressed the interest in a meeting held last week in China. Low share prices hovering at 6.5 multiples at the PSX and average dividend yield of 6.2% encouraged them to consider injecting money into the PSX, he said.
Now, the government of Pakistan has to persuade the Chinese government to let its investors invest in Pakistan. Beijing laws require Chinese investors to take permission from the regulators for investment in other countries.
Mehdi said the PSX had signed a contract with the Shenzhen Stock
Exchange (SZSE) to acquire a new trading and surveillance system at a cost of $2.85 million.
The new system would connect the PSX with three Chinese international stock markets including the SZSE, Shanghai and Hong Kong exchanges. The linkage will allow cross-listing of companies and attract foreign investment in each other's stocks.
Earlier, a Chinese consortium acquired a 40% stake in the PSX - the company running the stock trading platform - at Rs28 per share in January 2017.
A high PSX official told The Express Tribune on the sidelines of a conference that the bourse had written three letters to the Ministry of Finance, requesting it to initiate talks with the Chinese government for seeking approval for Chinese investment in the PSX.
"However, no progress has been made so far," he said. "Now, we are planning to take a delegation to meet Prime Minster Imran Khan in this regard."
The PSX chairman revealed that the new trading and surveillance system would be fully deployed over the next 12 to 14 months. "However, an interim surveillance system will be in place by February 2020."
Earlier, the apex regulator - Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) - had given the PSX a deadline to deploy a surveillance system by December 2019.