SME Bank pre-tender process complete – Journal

ISLAMABAD: The Privatization Commission (PC) completed the pre-tender process for the privatization of SME Bank on Thursday and parties interested in the transaction have been shortlisted.

At the same time, the PC Council has completed initial discussions and consultations with the shortlisted bidders to help them complete their due diligence process. A high-level meeting chaired by Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin reviewed the progress of the bank’s privatization.

After detailed deliberation, Mr Tarin tasked the Special Assistant on Income, Dr Waqar Masood Khan, to assess the needs and prepare a proposal to strengthen the balance sheet of the SME Bank.

The management came when the commission informed the Minister of Finance regarding the capital requirement of the Bank of SMEs.

Minister of Privatization Muhammadmian Soomro informed the meeting that they are constantly in contact with potential investors and will continue to inform the Ministry of Finance, State Bank of Pakistan and all other relevant stakeholders of the new developments.

Mr. Tarin affirmed his support to PC for the success of the transaction. SBP Governor Dr Reza Baqir also attended the meeting.

Hiring of financial advisors approved

On Thursday, Mr. Soomro called the fourth PC Council meeting of the current year. The Federal Secretary, members of the Board of Directors and senior officials of the Ministry attended the meeting in question.

During the meeting, various important issues including the privatization of international hotel services (SIH), the hiring of audit firms for external audit, the status of the sale of federal government properties, CEEC and an update on the overall privatization program were discussed.

The status of the sale of 26 federal government properties was also discussed. Initially, 23 of the 26 properties were sold through an open tender in September of last year, while three properties remained unsold.

Out of 23 properties sold, 920 million rupees was deposited against 10 properties, while the deposit for the remaining 13 properties was forfeited due to the failure of successful bidders to deposit the required sum.

Posted in Dawn, le 4 June 2021

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