Tuesday, February 7

NATIONAL: Meeting between Minister for Economic Affairs and ITFC chief

Islamabad: A virtual meeting held today between Mr. Omar Ayub Khan, Minister for Economic Affairs and Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), ITFC to discuss the scope of ITFC financing.

It was discussed that how ITFC can arrange financing for broader trade activities in Pakistan under commodity financing. The Minister for Economic Affairs appreciated ITFC who arranged financing of about US$ 7 billion for import oil and LNG from 2008 to 2021. It was highlighted that Pakistan’s POL financing requirement is much bigger, therefore, ITFC can get bigger portion of financing from the existing US$ 1.5 billion each year. It also came under deliberations that how this financing facility may also be utilized for import of food related commodities. Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), ITFC thanked the Minister for Economic Affairs and appreciated EAD’s interest in ITFC to meet the short-term trade financing needs.

He also encouraged to include other commodities in addition to POL under the 4th Framework Agreement to be commenced from January 2021 and to increase annual financing from US$ 1.1 billion to US$ 1.5 billion. He further added that ITFC arranged two Warehouse Receipt Financing workshops in Islamabad and Karachi during 2019 in collaboration of EAD and State Bank of Pakistan and will provide technical assistance for capacity building in the Agriculture Sector.

The CEO, ITFC updated that the ongoing syndication is about to complete and US$ 600 million will be available to Pakistan during this month. ITFC further assured that Pakistan is the top priority for the Corporation to invest in trade financing and meet country’s POL procurement requirements.