ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar Sunday emphasized upon early completion of the divestment process while underscoring the need for improved governance structure for the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX).
Ishaq Dar noticed the post integration improvement in performance of stock market, saying the purpose of integration was creation of a modern and well-governed exchange, which had radically improved and well positioned in the global arena. He was talking during a meeting with senior officials of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) here. The SECP Chairman briefed the minister about various important matters of the capital commodities market and Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC) segment, said a Finance Ministry press release.
The minister was given an overview of the performance of the PSX, post integration and the status of divestment of its shares. Briefing the minister on the reform agenda for commodities futures market, the SECP Chairman expressed the regulator’s resolve to develop this segment of the market on priority basis.
“Pakistan primarily being an agriculture-based economy needs a mercantile exchange that plays its due role in ensuring closer linkage with the real economy. Pakistan Mercantile Exchange (PMEX) should have national level branch network,” he added.
The minister, while endorsing the SECP’s vision, assured of his full support in revitalizing PMEX and emphasized on the need to have a visionary leadership at the exchange that could steer it to success and implement required reforms.
He said infrastructure development and long-term financing through the capital market was a critical element to raise the gross domestic product growth rate from the existing level to 7%. He assured that the government was fully committed to support the debt market, in particular SUKKUKs. During the meeting, the minister was also updated on the two-day international NBFC Conference held last month, and the recommendation put forth by the participants.
The minister appreciated the SECP’s supportive role in facilitating various reforms and its efforts in creating investor awareness and education. He expressed his pleasure over the increase in number of accounts and the investors’ interest in the capital markets through the mutual fund industry. He mentioned that the government’s business friendly policies and economic reform agenda had already put the country’s economy back on track. It was further emphasized that all necessary reforms be put in place to facilitate the market to grow to its full potential so that the benefits can be passed on to the economy and assured the government’s full support to the SECP for the same.