KARACHI - Disbursement of credit to the agriculture sector by commercial and specialized banks has impressively risen by 25.31 per cent to Rs 211.561 billion on year-on-year basis during the recently concluded 2007-08 fiscal year (FY08), surpassing the indicative target of Rs 200 billion by a handsome margin. In absolute terms, agri credit disbursement rose Rs 42.73 billion in FY08 when compared with preceding year's disbursement of Rs 168.830 billion. Overall credit disbursement by five major commercial banks including Allied Bank Limited (ABL), Habib Bank Limited (HBL), MCB Bank, National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) and United Bank Limited (UBL) stood at Rs 94.749 billion during the July 2007 to June 2008 period, compared with Rs 80.393 billion during the same corresponding period, depicting an increase of Rs 14.356 billion in absolute terms or almost 18 per cent. Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL), the largest specialized bank, has disbursed Rs 66.939 billion in FY08, compared with Rs 56.473 billion in FY07, while disbursement by Punjab Provincial Co-operative Bank Limited (PPCBL) stood at Rs 5.931 billion in FY08, compared with Rs 7.988 billion in FY07. Besides, 14 domestic private banks (DPBs) also loaned a combined Rs 43.941 billion in FY08, up 83.27 percent when compared with Rs 23.976 billion disbursed in FY07. It may be recalled that the State Bank of Pakistan had set an indicative target of Rs 200 billion for FY08, up from Rs 160 billion in FY07, showing an increase of Rs 40 billion.