Thursday January 27, 2022

SECP annual report lists steps taken in 2019/20

December 25, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) in its annual report for fiscal year 2019-20 detailed measures it took to promote capital formation, improve financial access for SMEs, expand financial inclusion, provide ease of doing business and leverage technological advances.

SECP Chairman Aamir Khan in his message published in the report said that during the outgoing fiscal, the commission’s focus remained on three specific areas. Firstly, on creating an enabling regulatory environment for the business community to attract investment and spur economic growth by simplifying the regulatory regime. Secondly, on expanding market outreach and leveraging technology to bring about efficiency, and lastly the focus was to balance effective enforcement with an efficient regulatory environment.

Some noteworthy regulatory reforms implemented during the fiscal included simplification of IPO regulations, establishment of growth enterprise market (GEM) at the Pakistan Stock Exchange, introducing corporate governance regime based on comply or explain approach. Some other measures were simplification of further issue of capital regulations, introduction of categorisation of brokers, revamping of margin finance product and introduction of simplified ‘Sahulat Account’ for low risk investors.

The SECP has launched a digital secured transaction registry to facilitate small businesses / farmers to access bank finance without having to mortgage their homes or land; over 85,000 charges have been registered since April 2020. As a result of this, Pakistan was now one of the only 60 countries in the world that has such a registry, backed by necessary legal framework.

The report also said that the SECP has developed anti-money laundering/ countering financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) framework to safeguard the regulated financial sector inter-alia the stockbrokers, commodities brokers, NBFCs and modarabas, the insurers / takaful operators, and NPO’s from being used by money launderers and terrorist financiers for illicit purposes.