President okays infrastructure bonds


President Asif Ali Zardari today directed speeding up of the distribution of share certificates among employees of state-owned enterprises as well as floating infrastructure bonds.
This he said while chairing a meeting on Benazir Employees Stock Option Scheme (BESOS) at Aiwan-e-Sadr today during which the President also announced to distribute unit certificates to the employees of PPL and KAPCO on October 3rd at a special ceremony in the Presidency. Empowering the workers is our political agenda and we will pursue it, the President said on the occasion.
Those who were present during the meeting included Mr Ghous Bux Khan Mahar, Federal Minister for Privatization, Dr Asim Hussain, Federal Minister for Petroleum & Natural Resources, Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for Water & Power, Ms Sherry Rehman, MNA, Salman Faruqui, Secretary General to the President and Spokesperson Farhatullah Babar.
Briefing about the meeting, Spokesperson Farhatullah Babar said that under the scheme 12% of the government shares in state run enterprises would be given to the employees free of cost through Employees Trust that are to be created for this purpose. About 500,000 employees would benefit from this scheme, he said.
He said that BESOS was first launched on August 14, 2009 when 887 employees of the Heavy Mechanical Complex Taxila were given share certificates. It was followed by distribution of certificates among employees of OGDCL and PPL in 2009, he said.
So far more than two billion rupees have been distributed as dividend among the workers of different units under this scheme and another over one billion rupees have been distributed among over two hundred workers under the buy back scheme.
He said that so far Employees Trust have been created in 64 state owned entities and Unit Certificates to 47 entities have been distributed. The meeting was informed that 12 per cent of GoP shares in another nine enterprises will be distributed among the employees during next nine weeks. These entities include Pakistan Steel Mills, Utility Stores Corporation, Islamabad Electric Supply Company, Tribal Electric Supply company and others, Farhatullah Babar said.
The President also called for stepping up work on the floatation of infrastructure bonds for raising equity to build infrastructure projects. He said that he has also invited leading stock exchange members and investors to build infrastructure projects on build, operate, own and maintain (BOOM) basis. Farhatullah Babar said that the President also directed the Ministers for Petroleum and Water and Power to sit together with the stake holders and finalise the scheme for infrastructure bonds without further delay for the consideration of the government.
The President said that infrastructure bonds and raising equity through stock exchanges for infrastructure projects were out of box solutions for rejuvenating economic activity in the country and asked the two ministers to speed up work on it.