LAHORE - The equity market upward trend amid political uncertainty during the outgoing week is logical because the new government that took office after the general elections in 2013 has generated hope, expectancy and economic activity in the country while political parties who are protesting against the govt have no clear agenda.

This was observed by the stock market tycoon and AKD Group Chairman Aqeel Dhedhi while talking to The Nation.

“As the investors clearly understand the fake agenda of protesters they are not scared of with this temporary and self-created political tension and are making huge investment in stock market, pushing up the KSE-100 Index by 2.3%WoW to close at the 29,344 level.  He said that government was concentrating upon economic and social progress to strengthen the economy and enhance its inclusiveness. He said that amid the bullish sentiment, average trading volumes also improved by 5%WoW (to 160mn shares).

Mr Dhedhi said that last week, market lost 3% with 30% falling volume of 152mn shares, as decline in global equity markets and military operation in North Waziristan forced market participants to stay cautious. He urged all the political parties to set aside their difference and jointly focus on national agenda as political unrest is impeding the national growth.

AKD Group chairman said that all political parties should follow the present government and join hands with the private sector to put economy back on rail.

He said that opinion differences are part of the democratic system but all should be united on national interests that would give a good signal to the foreign investors who are planning to make investment in Pakistan.

“At a time when the country is facing various internal and external challenges and Pakistan Armed Forces are busy in operation to deracinate the menace of terrorism, political harmony is direly needed to support our Armed Forces.”

He said that with a view to compete with the economic giants of the world, country needs a selfless and visionary leadership who has the ability to think beyond tomorrow to tackle all the governance-related issues and for the sake of future generations. He said that present regime has shown its seriousness in creating a business-friendly atmosphere by incorporating a number of business community proposals in the federal budget. Now all political forces are duty bound to respond to the wake up call of the private sector and play their due role for economic stability of the country.

He said that unemployment is mother of a number of social ills being witnessed by the country today. The private sector has the solution of this worry provided it is facilitated through a well-thought methodology.” During the week, the first stage of Secondary Public Offering of Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) shares took place, where the govt intends to offload 3.55% of the total paid up capital.

 Other major highlights of the week are (1) National Assembly’s approval of Rs4.3tn federal budget, (2) Foreign exchange reserves crossing US$14bn mark, (3) Govt. fetching Rs39bn at the T-Bills auction and (4) urea offtake clocking in at 408k tons in May 2014, down 16%YoY but up 58%MoM.