ISLAMABAD - The PML-N government has completed the process of divesting its shares of Allied Bank of Pakistan (ABL), which generated Rs 14.4 billion for the national kitty including $32 million foreign buying.

The Cabinet Committee on Privatisation (CCOP), which met under the chair of Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar on Friday, unanimously approved strike price of Rs. 110/- per share for divestment of GoP residual shares in Allied Bank Ltd. and also allocation of shares to successful bidders.  

The government has received overwhelming response from the investors as against the total of 131 million shares were offered for the divestment in the stock market, the orders for 185 million shares have been placed.

Earlier PC Board in its meeting held on December 11, 2014 recommended the ‘Strike Price of Rs.110/- and allocation of GOP Shares to the successful bidders as specified in the Offer for Sale Document (OFSD). The CCOP consequently considered the recommendations of the PC Board early Friday and approved the ‘Strike Price’.

Minister of State/Chairman Privatisation Commission Mohammad Zubair informed the CCoP meeting that there has been a fine mix of local and foreign exchange component in the orders placed for shares. Against the strike price of Rs.110 the orders placed are worth Rs 14.4 billion inclusive of $32 million foreign exchange component. There has been encouraging response from home and abroad and the transaction has been completed in a record 19 working days, Zubair added. He further said that strike price of Rs.110 per share translates into a discount of only Rs.2.76 per share to the closing price of Rs.112.76 on December 11, 2014, i.e. a minimal discount of 2.76pc to the closing price on December 11, 2014. This is one of the lowest discounts offered for similar transactions anywhere in Asia over the last several years, Zubair remarked.Finance Minister Ishaq Dar chaired the meeting on video link from Lahore which was attended by Khurram Dastgir, Minister for Commerce, Pervaiz Rashid, Information Minister, Chairman Privatization Commission, Muhammad Zubair, Secretary Privatisation Commission, Ahmad Nawaz Sukhera, Secretary Finance, Later, addressing a press conference, Minister of State for Privatisation Mohammad Zubair termed the bank’s shares transaction a major success of the government. “The government had now left zero shares in ABL”,

Giving details of the transaction, Zubair informed, “Foreign investors spent $32 million on bidding of 13 percent of total shares of ABL which showed their confidence in the stable economy of Pakistan”. He further said that Privatisation Commission extended date for appointment of Financial Advisor (FA) for strategic sale of Pakistan Steel Mills on the request of some consortiums.

He further said that strategic sale of State Owned Enterprises in active list of privatisation was a tricky business but process has been initiated and some of them would be put on sale in mid of 2015.