VIS Confirms High Corporate Governance Rating for Pakistan Kuwait Investment Company

Karachi, VIS Credit Rating Company Limited (VIS) has reaffirmed the Corporate Governance Rating of Pakistan Kuwait Investment Company (Private) Limited (PKIC) at ‘CGR-9+’, indicating a very high level of governance. This update follows the previous rating announced on December 15, 2022.

According to VIS Credit Rating Company Limited, the PKIC, a joint venture between the governments of Pakistan and Kuwait, has demonstrated strong corporate governance underpinned by effective Board oversight. The company, shared equally between the State Bank of Pakistan and the Kuwait Investment Authority, serves as a Development Finance Institution offering various financial services. The Board, comprising equal nominations from both sponsors, has recently seen changes including a new Managing Director and a Government of Pakistan nominee.

The rating takes into account PKIC’s robust governance framework. This includes good attendance records at Board and Committee meetings, a stable senior management team with seasoned professionals, and a clear succession plan for key positions. PKIC’s commitment to adhering to corporate governance practices has been a major factor in maintaining its high rating.

PKIC’s risk governance is highlighted by its focus on enhancing risk management practices. This includes effective credit risk management, adherence to Green Banking Guidelines, and tools like “Risk Nucleus” for managing operational risks. The company also regularly updates policies to comply with the State Bank of Pakistan’s requirements and has implemented IFRS-9.

The internal control framework of PKIC is strengthened by a qualified internal audit team that conducts risk-based audits in line with the COSO Framework for Internal Control. The management’s dedication to ensuring the effectiveness of internal controls over financial reporting is in compliance with SBP directives. Anti-Money Laundering compliance and onboarding processes are prioritized areas, with significant emphasis on training and outreach sessions.

PKIC’s initiative in digital banking, through the establishment of Raqami Islamic Digital Bank Limited, marks its entry as the first Shariah-compliant Digital Retail Bank in partnership with notable investors. The company has also ventured into Islamic Finance with an in-principle approval from SBP for offering Shariah-compliant financial products and services. A dedicated Shariah Advisor reporting directly to the Board has been appointed.

Furthermore, PKIC maintains transparent communication with its stakeholders through comprehensive disclosures on its website. The company has also made strides in improving workforce gender diversity, with an increase in female representation and inclusion in leadership roles.

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