«8th Floor, Dawood Centre, M. T. Khan Road Karachi, Pakistan Telephone: (+9221) 35630528-29 Fax: (+9221) 35630530 Website: ...»
The Pakistan Business Council
8th Floor, Dawood Centre,
M. T. Khan Road
Telephone: (+9221) 35630528-29
Fax: (+9221) 35630530
The Pakistan Business Council (PBC) is a business policy advocacy platform, established in 2005 by
14 of Pakistan’s (now 45) largest private-sector businesses / conglomerates, including multinationals.
It is a professionally run organization headed by a full-time chief executive officer. The current CEO is Mr. Kamran Y Mirza, who brings with him considerable experience of working in the corporate sector and with the government.
The PBC is a not-for-profit entity, registered under Section 42 of the Companies Ordinance 1984.
Though it is not required under the law to do so, the PBC follows to the extent possible, the Code of Corporate Governance as applicable to listed companies.
Objectives of the PBC:
The major objectives of the PBC as stated in its founding documents are:
To provide for the formation and exchange of views on any question connected with the • conduct of business in and from Pakistan.
To conduct, organize, set up, administer and manage campaigns, surveys, focus groups, • workshops, seminars and field works for carrying out research and raising awareness in regard to matters affecting businesses in Pakistan.
To acquire, collect, compile, analyze, publish and provide statistics, data analysis and • other information relating to businesses of any kind, nature or description and on opportunities for such businesses within and outside Pakistan.
To promote and facilitate the integration of businesses in Pakistan into the World • economy and to encourage the development and growth of Pakistani multinationals.
To interact with governments in the economic development of Pakistan and to facilitate, • foster and further the economic, social and human resource development of Pakistan.
The PBC Board:
The PBC Board has 14 members, 13 of whom are elected from the Executive Members of the PBC, while the CEO is the 14th member of the Board. The current composition of the PBC Board is as
No. Name Representing PBC Executive Member
01. Bashir Ali Mohammad (Chairman – PBC) Gul Ahmed Group
02. Abdul Razak Dawood Descon
03. Ali S. Habib Indus Motors
04. Aliuddin Ansari Engro Corporation
05. Atif Aslam Bajwa Bank Alfalah Limited
06. Ehsan Malik
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The PBC is neither a trade body nor a representative body for a specific industry. It does not advocate sector and industry specific issues; instead its advocacy thrust is on improving the general business environment of the country.
PBC represents the very large businesses in Pakistan, with substantial investments in manufacturing and the financial sectors. To ensure quality of membership, the qualifying threshold for membership has been deliberately kept high, so that no more than 150 – 175 of existing businesses can potentially qualify. To ensure ‘frontline business intellectual input’, the authorized representative invariably have to be the Chairman / President / CEO / MD of the member company.
The current qualifying threshold for a non-financial sector company to be a member is to have an equity of at least Rs.1.0 billion, or Net Fixed Assets equivalent to this value. For a financial sector company, the qualifying requirement is a paid-up capital of at least Rs.2.0 billion. Qualifying thresholds are for individual companies, and group companies’ paid-up capitals and group companies’ fixed assets cannot be clubbed together for meeting the qualification criteria.
To further ensure participation of only serious businesses, the joining fee and the annual subscription fee have been kept at premium levels of Rs.3.0 million and Rs.1.5 million respectively.
Finally, the membership criteria also stipulates that meeting the qualifying threshold is not a guarantee for acceptance; companies desirous of PBC membership have to be invited to join the PBC, and membership is subject to Board approval.
PBC Composition by Sectors of the Economy:
PBC currently has 45 members, whose businesses cover nearly all sectors of the formal economy.
The sector wise representation (in alphabetical order) is detailed below:
An Evidence Based Approach to Policy Advocacy:
The PBC believes in research-based advocacy. Advocacy efforts are supported with evidence of best practices in economies at a similar level of development as Pakistan. Moreover, our recommendations are tailored to Pakistan’s unique environment. This emphasis on a pragmatic approach to advocacy has enabled the PBC to emerge as the apex representative of big business in Pakistan.
The PBC endeavors to partner with various government ministries, departments, regulators, institutions as well as with other private sector organizations and professional bodies, in its advocacy efforts.
Since 2006 the PBC has worked very closely through taskforces constituted by the Ministry of
Finance, the FBR, the SECP and the SBP, in various areas which include:
• The Holding Company Law - 2007
• The Law on Large Import Houses - 2007
• The Real Estate Investment Trust Law – 2008
• The Special Economic Zone Act -2012
• The revised Code of Corporate Governance for Listed Companies - 2012
• The Takeover Code - 2012
Building National Consensus on Major Issues:
The Pakistan Business Council first developed in 2011 a National Economic Agenda (NEA) which covered five (5) areas of vital importance for socio-economic uplift and development. The PBC worked with major stakeholders, including political parties, in an effort to achieve a consensus on a common national agenda which cuts across the political divide. As part of these efforts, in April 2011 the PBC convened a meeting in Islamabad at which senior leadership of the five (5) major political parties agreed to work to develop a common national agenda. In 2013 the NEA was revisited by the PBC in order to update it and to use it as an advocacy tool with the new government which took office in May 2013.
The Pakistan Economic Forum (PEF):
The Pakistan Economic Forum (PEF) is envisaged as a biennial event hosted by the PBC. It brings together the best available intellectual capital in the country, to debate on major issues which are confronting Pakistan. The panels of the Forum, headed by their own Chairs & Co-Chairs and comprising of sector specialists, debate various issues and come up with pragmatic recommendations.
These recommendations are then shared with a wider audience in the form of PBC position papers.
The 2nd Edition of the PEF was held April 2013 and the issues considered were:
Energy • Education • Macroeconomic Stability • Regional Trade • Social Protection, and • Water • The recommendations of the 2nd Edition of the PEF have been circulated to a wide audience to sensitize the stakeholders about the major issues facing the Country.
The 3rd Edition of the PEF is tentatively scheduled to be held in Karachi in the March 2015.
Recognition of PBC’s Efforts:
PBC’s efforts to improve the business climate and its emphasis on improving the competitiveness of Pakistani businesses has led to the PBC being recognized as the apex representative body of the private sector in Pakistan. In pursuing its objectives the PBC has partnered with various institutions and policy-making forums, such as
• The PBC has signed a joint MOU with MEDEF (Movement of the French Enterprises)
• The PBC has signed an MOU with the Confederation of India Industry (CII).
• The PBC has signed an MOU with the Federation of Korean Industry (FKI).
• The CEO of the PBC serves as is a director on board of the Board of Investment (BOI).
• The CEO and a previous Chairman of the PBC were the only private sector representatives on the Committee set up for the development of Special Economic Zones in Pakistan.
• PBC is represented by its CEO on the Taskforce constituted by the Planning Commission for the Development of the Private Sector.
November 2014 PBC Profile 8 The Director Research of the PBC was part of the Pakistani team that negotiated the new • Afghanistan Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement.
The PBC has been nominated by the Ministry of Commerce as the Secretariat in Pakistan for • the Pakistan India Joint Business Forum (PIJBF).
Current Areas of Policy Advocacy:
1. Greater market access for Pakistani exports in the major markets of the world.
2. Constant monitoring of the trade policies being pursued by the Government of Pakistan with the aim ensuring a level playing field for Pakistani businesses.
3. Greater regional economic integration and especially trade with India but subject to a level playing field for Pakistani businesses in India.
4. Reduction in the fiscal deficit by reducing government waste and broadening of the tax base.
5. Human capital development by incentivizing large firms to invest in their human capital.
6. Bringing into the public debate issues which impact the long-term development of Pakistan.
Major Accomplishments in 2013:
1. PBC is the secretariat in Pakistan for the Pakistan India Joint Business Forum (PIJBF). The PIJBF is a body which has been notified by the governments of India & Pakistan and has been mandated with the task of coming up with recommendations for the normalization of India Pakistan trade. Both governments have nominated 15 top business persons from their respective countries. The PIJBF is in the process of compiling recommendations for consideration by the two governments.
2. PBC Working with the Ministry of Commerce to Develop Pakistan’s SAFTA Sensitive List:
The PBC is working with the MoC to develop a list of items which should be on Pakistan’s Sensitive List for trade with India under SAFTA. PBC is lobbying with the MoC to ensure that industry’s concerns vis-à-vis opening up of trade with India and a level playing field for Pakistan’s exports to India are addressed.
3. PBC / FBR Joint Working Group: The Chairman FBR has formed a Joint Working Group (JWG) of the PBC & Senior Islamabad based Members of the FBR. The JWG has been tasked with helping the FBR plug revenue leakages as well as work to remove the operational issues faced by businesses in general and PBC members in particular.
4. PBC providing input to the Ministry of Commerce as it Negotiates the 2nd Phase of the Pak China FTA: PBC is acting as the “Think Tank” to the Ministry of Commerce as it negotiates the 2nd Phase of the Pak China FTA.
5. PBC is organizing a Pakistan Business Delegation to France: The PBC along with the BOI and the French Embassy in Pakistan is organizing a Business Delegation to France in June 2014. The BD is expected to be led by the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Resources and comprise of the Chairman BOI & Chairman Privatization Commission. The Businessmen will be led by Mr.
Bashir Ali Mohammad Vice Chairman of the PBC and comprise businessmen who will be vetted by the PBC.
6. PBC reviewing the Pak-USA BIT Agreement for Board of Investment:
The PBC has been requested by the Board of Investment to review the Draft of the Pak USA Bilateral Investment Treaty which is currently under negotiation.
The members of the Pakistan Business Council believe that Pakistan’s secure future lies in high and sustained levels of economic growth and that this growth must be inclusive. To further this objective the PBC is continuously willing to partner with the various current and future stakeholders.
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