KARACHI - The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has registered 653 companies during the first quarter of the calendar year 2009 that ended on March 31. With the new incorporation, the total number of registered companies with SECP as on March 31, 2009 stands now at 53,211, SECP sources said. During the quarter, the numbers of companies registered during the months of January, February and March, 2009 were 237, 187 and 229, respectively. Out of the total 653 companies registered during the quarter, 647 companies were limited by shares, comprising of seven public unlisted companies, 610 private companies and 30 single member companies, the sources added. In addition, four associations not-for-profit under section 42 of the Companies Ordinance, 1984, one company limited by guarantee under section 43 of the Ordinance and one trade organization were also registered. Total authorized capital and paid-up capital of the 647 companies limited by shares amounted to Rs.269 million and Rs.12.73 million, respectively. During the quarter, the number of new incorporations was the highest in Lahore whereby 210 companies have been registered with the Companies Registration Office (CRO) of SECP, followed by 156 companies in CRO Karachi and 182 in CRO Islamabad. The sources added that CROs of Peshawar and Quetta registered 28 companies each while CROs at Multan, Faisalabad, and Sukkur registered 27, 20 and two companies, respectively. The highest number of company incorporation was witnessed in the services sector comprising 118 companies, followed by 112 in trading, 62 in tourism, 45 in construction, 40 in IT, 28 in communications, 22 in power generation and 21 in textile sector. During the quarter, the Commission has granted licenses to seven associations not-for-profit. Of these, 4 licenses were granted for the promotion of social services and 3 for promoting education sector. The newly registered 653 cos also include those 53 companies having foreign investment. Foreign investors are mainly from U.S.A. having participation in nine companies followed by U.K. and China with investment in eight companies each, and Germany in four cos. Other foreign investors belong to Canada, Italy, Korea, Malaysia, Turkey having participation in two companies each and Austria, Australia, Bulgaria, Belgium, France, HKong, Oman, Iran, Lebanon, Netherlands, Nigeria, SAfrica, UAE, Camaneyland have investment in one company each, the sources added.