ISLAMABAD

After failing to complete Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL)’s transaction in capital market, the government would now go for divesting the shares of Allied Bank Limited (ABL) and Habib Bank Limited (HBL) in December and March respectively.

“The government has appointed the financial advisor for ABL and the transaction of bank will be closed in December. The government will appoint the financial advisor for HBL in next two weeks. The transaction of HBL will completed in March next year”, said Mohammad Zubair Minister of State/ Chairman Privatisation Commission while addressing a press conference.

He informed that government would go for the divesting the shares of OGDCL when the market situation improves, as currently Company’s share price are on declining side due to the reduction in oil prices in international market. Minister of State criticised the Pakistan Tehreek-I-Insaf (PTI) for issuing white paper against United Bank Limited (UBL)’s shares transaction, which has been given best deal award by ‘The Asset’ publication.  

He said the award by the Hong Kong based magazine contradicted propaganda by PTI Chief Imran Khan that the transaction was not transparent and that the country suffered losses. Chairman Privatisation Commission said, “UBL share placement has been awarded the best deal award by the prestigious ‘The Asset’ publication. Credit Suisse made the submission for this award. It is important to note that the best deal award was given to UBL share placement”. This award is given on an annual basis to the best performing capital and bond market transactions selected from the entire Asian countries. This demonstrates the strategic importance and value creation achieved from the UBL share placement for Pakistan, he added.

Mohammad Zubair said if PTI couldn’t appreciate our achievements than at least should not comment. The Minister of State said Imran Khan is in the habit of spreading unverified things ignoring the fact that such an attitude can harm interests of the country. He denied the statement of PTI’s leader Arif Alvi that government has given Rs 500 million to KASB Bank Limited (KBL), as he said government did not pay a single penny for the Bank. On a question, he said, “Government has not decided yet to how much shares of Pakistan International Airline (PIA) will be divested”.  People have rejected Imran Khan’s call of not paying taxes and sending remittances to Pakistan, as the Minister of State for Privatisation Commission said both remittances and taxes have shown growth during ongoing financial year over the corresponding period last year.