LAHORE  - The positive credit rating of Pakistan by Moody’s International and picking up rating of its five major banks will help substantially improve the economic indicators and increase foreign investment flow into the country.

This was the crux of interviews of the APP with LCCI (Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry) President Engineer Sohail Lashari, Lahore Stock Exchange (LSE) Managing Director Aftab Ahmed Chaudhry and former Chairman of Pakistan Tanners Association (PTA) Agha Syed Syedain here Sunday. They said that world’s top credit rating agency, Moody’s International, rating in favour of Pakistan coupled with jacking up from negative to positive rating of Habib Bank Limited (HBL), Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB), Allied Bank Limited (ABL), United Bank Limited (UBL) and National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) after 10years would definitely restore the foreign investors’ confidence to put in their money in Pakistan.

The LCCI President Sohail Lashari viewed that Moody’s International termed Pakistan’s credit rating better because the PML-N government had since its inception been moving in the right direction as far as the economic policies were concerned.

He cited, “It is the result of government’s successful and effective economic policies. The economic reforms by the N-League government have brought improvements in the banking system and these reforms not only impacted positively the country’s five major banks but also enhanced the government’s credibility.” To a question, Lashari said that Moody’s International positive remarks about Pakistan’s economic outlook was due to effective steps taken by the  govt, including launching of economic reforms; ensuring stability in exchange rate; reduction in the dearness ratio and successful sale of Euro Bonds.; increased foreign reserves; least government’s borrowings; stabilizing foreign debt servicing balance; and narrowing down fiscal deficit. “And it is a good omen that will ensure conducive investment atmosphere as well as turn the foreign investors towards Pakistan,” he added.

To another question, the Lahore Chamber of Commerce President said that at this critical juncture, Pakistan could not afford long-marches, sit-in and strikes that inflict billion of rupees loss to businesses in Pakistan just in a day.

The LCCI President suggested that after having positive credit rating of Moody’s International and improving the Pakistan’s economic outlook, the government must ensure that its polices were growth-oriented, for which, it was mandatory that trade and industrial sector must be given maximum loans and on reduced mark-up rates, besides supplying uninterrupted electricity and gas to the industry.

The Lahore Stock Exchange (LSE) Managing Director Aftab Ahmed Chaudhry told this scribe that Moody’s International had termed Pakistan’s five major banks credit rating positive after 10 years that would surely put a better impact on the country’s stock exchanges.

After the Moody’s report in favour of Pakistan, he added, the Karachi Stock Exchange would be experiencing a jump of more than 400 points daily.  He said that for the first time, the KSE recently crossed 30,000 points. To a query, he said that Moody’s credit rating would increase foreign investment in stock exchanges and further stabilize the country’s economic situation.

Pakistan Tanners Association (PTA) former Chairman and Federal Chamber’s Standing Committee on Leather Industry, Chairman Agha Syed Syedain has termed the Moody’s remarks as the outcome of best and viable economic policies of the PML-N government.

He, however, appealed to the government for exempting the leather and textile industry from load-shedding of electricity and gas thus enabling these sectors to timely complete export orders that would ultimately help enhance the overall export volume of Pakistan.