KARACHI: State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said none of its department is being shifted to Lahore. However, part of a few functional departments of its subsidiary responsible to undertake operational work is being relocated to Lahore, to meet the oversight and logistic requirements for operational efficiency.
The central bank said its press release that the selection of Lahore was purely based on availability of space as none of the other offices in particular our Islamabad Office had enough space to accommodate the manpower so relocated.
It may be added that SBP has two fully owned subsidiaries i.e. SBP Banking Services Corporation (SBP BSC) and National Institute of Banking & Finance (NIBAF). SBP BSC, established in 2001 under an Ordinance is the operational arm of SBP with its Head Office in Karachi and 16 field offices established in 15 cities.
The SBP BSC caters to operational responsibilities related to currency distribution, foreign exchange operations, and banker to the governments, as also dissemination and implementation of policies on behalf of Development Finance Group (DFG) of SBP in the areas of Agriculture, Islamic Banking, Housing Finance, SME and Micro Finance, alongside provision of non-core services to SBP.
The policy formulation work in these areas shall continue to be performed by SBP at Karachi.
It may be noted that upcountry remittances of fresh banknotes to Peshawar, Rawalpindi, and Islamabad, Muzaffarabad, Gujranwala and Sialkot offices as also coin distribution to all offices are managed by Lahore Office.
It may thus be observed that bulk of currency operations are handled in Central and North Regions, the management of these operations from Lahore will lead to effective oversight, improve liaison with Pakistan Railways and allow SBP BSC to fulfill its statutory functions more effectively. Accordingly, five out of 11 departments of SBP BSC, having oversight on functions relating to currency management, bankers to governments, internal audit, Foreign Exchange operations and implementation of DFG related policies, performed at office level on transactional and day-to-day basis are being partially relocated closer to Central and Northern regions to ensure greater operational efficiency and logistic ease according to work load of these activities.
The relocation of internal audit would also ensure more frequency of audit exercise at these offices to improve the supervisory oversight.
It may be reiterated again that this move neither involves any shifting in the Office or functions of SBP nor the Head Office of SBP BSC. The Head Office of SBP BSC, its six departments including the Strategic and Corporate Affairs Department will continue to be based in Karachi. The MD Office will also continue be housed at Karachi. As already stated this decision was made by the management with the prior knowledge of the Board of Directors of SBP BSC.
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