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Should Pakistanis abroad invest in their home country?

KSE-100 historic returns higher than MSCI World Index returns

SAMAA | - Posted: Jun 5, 2021 | Last Updated: 2 weeks ago
Posted: Jun 5, 2021 | Last Updated: 2 weeks ago

Data shows overseas Pakistanis could get a higher return on their investment if they have invested in Pakistan for a longer period. This is because Pakistan is among markets that have been outperforming developed markets on the back of a higher economic growth rate. For example, over the past 20 years, Pakistan’s KSE-100 companies have given a 14% return in dollar terms compared to a 5% return (during the same period) by the Morgan Stanley Capital International World Index, a global equity index that tracks the performance of large and mid-cap listed companies across 23 developed markets.

Disclaimer: This video has been published in partnership with Al Meezan Investment Management Limited. The purpose of this report is to educate our readers and viewers about aspects of personal finance. The information provided on SAMAA Digitals platforms is not meant to be taken as financial advice. Profit rates mentioned in the video have been used as example only and actual rates may vary depending upon the market’s performance. SAMAA Digital doesn’t not necessarily agree with the guest speaker’s views. Please always independently verify or check information being provided before making any investment decision or undertaking any financial transaction.

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One Comment

  1. Anonymous  June 14, 2021 12:15 am/ Reply

    The Honourable Federal Ombudsman, June 12, 2021
    Wafaqi Mohtasib’s Secretariat,

    Dear Sir,

    1980s ISSUES DECIDED –

    I am 75 years in the age group in this part of the world generally said “hanging legs in the grave”. After scribbling this to you, who knows I may live for an hour, a month or a year. Hence I await or expect no good out of my scribbling this without any pre or post drafting but just playing with keyboard. The words of the real honourable people viz Mr Justice Sardar Iqbal “remain in touch with my Secretariat as it gave us a good feedback”, the then Sindh Ombudsman’s personal advice “please use your God given penability raising issues which despite wishing we ourselves can’t initiate” and of Honourable Mr. S.M Zafar’s “Javed, I am surprised over your spirit of single handed untiringly fighting against injustices; why don’t you form an NGO so some hands may assist you”. These treasures are boosting this old man to scribble this otherwise, by experience, this old knew most probably he was wasting time.

    2. In the Quetta declaration, all the Chief Justices in Pakistan advised the educated citizens to come forward raising sufferings which the others deprived don’t know how to. But their lordships forgot to advise something to the functionaries through whose hands these sufferings in the first place arise. I am raising the issue which to one who just read school books and copied in examination may look my personal grievance, but a real educated who actually can understand what was written could realize the issue relates to a larger segment of Overseas Pakistanis and the country too. Appointing Grievance Commissioners or so and that, is not any real work. The real work is understanding such issues and by using the legal power solving those as was done in 1980s.


    3. Honestly speaking I admit the following few paragraphs are unnecessary here, but knowing well the aptitude of the ombudsman secretariat of time, it is too vital that these unnecessary paragraphs are included to refresh what is our shiny past.

    4. Sometime late 1980s while returning back to Bahrain, at Karachi airport I found a customs official taking money from an illiterate Pathan under the disguise that one could carry then only Rs 1,000 (or Rs. 500) Pakistani cash going abroad. That time Peshawar, Qutta, Multan were not the international airports. Coming Karachi from Peshawar to take flight for abroad was like another “Pardese” where one needed enough money not knowing when may he get ticket confirmation, baggage weight charges, daily hotel expense etc, hence one brought enough money. I was a Karahitie, I did not had this problem. After taking boarding card, I always went outside and handed over extra Pakistani cash to my family. Feeling tomorrow I might myself have to take a flight from Peshawar, the custom official there likewise could pick pocket me too, I took up the issue.

    5. Not just to the luck of me alone but of thousands of illiterate Pathans, there sat a man (Honourable Justice Sardar Iqbal or perhaps Justice Aslam Riaz Hussain), with God gifted spirit of serving the humanity and who knew well what an Ombudsman meant. Unlike today, my complaint was not rejected in limine on the objections laughable like; I was not an aggrieved (go and first get pick pocketed from hands of a customs officer), complaints to ombudsman must be in writing, this is not a specific complaint but general in nature, ombudsman can take note of acts of mal administration only. Rather, the ombudsman accepted the complaint. What was the name of pickpocketed pathan, how much money was taken, why complainant did not report it to the Dy. Director Customs on duty were the customs arguments. I explained all this which not just the then Ombudsman himself but his humane team, unlike 60 above بابے بزرگ today sitting in the Secretariat, listened carefully, found weight in my

    counter arguments and as I “suggested” 24-hours banking booths were opened at all departure lounges where unspent money could be deposited by the departing Overseas Pakistani for sending back to his home.

    6. Later as an extension in this regard, on my another application to the Federal Ombudsman some of the provisions of the Foreign Exchange Regulations (or) Rules were changed one of which I remember was that the limit of Pakistani cash carrying was increased. My house partially got burnt in a neighborhood fire in 2007 burning much of my papers, hence I might not be able to produce full particulars or details but Ombudsman office computerized data can retrieve this case namely Muhammad Javed, State of Bahrain v/s State Bank of Pakistan.

    7. Not just the then ombudsman had no allergy with the word “suggestion” but he did not even summon me from Bahrain for any Hearing(S) in Karachi.

    8. In 1990 I had to raise the issue that many people die without telling their heirs about existence of their bank accounts. I raised a suggestion before the Federal Ombudsman on this issue. The then Ombudsman, I am sure he was Mr. Justice Aslam Riaz Hussain, a man blessed with spirit of understanding public sufferings was on the seat. Neither he told me like today you are not an aggrieved (first die, and then come) nor showed any allergy towards my word “suggestion”. Rather the kind hearted and true ombudsman wrote a special memo to the now demised Pakistan Banking Council that the complainant had raised a very important humanitarian issue needing equally due consideration. All the Banks resisted my suggestion, for obvious reasons which I and many of this country know. However, unlike today’s banking mohtasib’s rhetoric “bank says so”, the Federal Ombudsman accepted 100% my drafted text proposed without a word change making it part of all future accounting openings as well implementing on already opened accounts.

    9. My proposal was that no single signature account be opened but joint. In the Form, a clause be inserted under which accountholder authorized the Bank to contact a given named third person to know his/her “welfare” in case there was no transaction in the account for

    three consecutive years. This clause was made an annexure, to be included in the printing of new Account Opening Forms when existing lot finished. The newspapers like daily Jang wrote editorial praising this step.


    10. The issue being raised is not a new but in effect an extension to what the then Honourable Federal Ombudsman Mr. Justice Aslam Riaz Hussain, another God blessed with public spirit human, decided. I am not much optimistic today about this now raised issue as our dictionaries today have changed viz Ombudsman delivers “free justice at your door steps” which today means come from abroad for Hearing(s) in ombudsman office on expenses of hundreds thousands, even in Covid whether commercial flights were operating or not and the Karachi airport was closed but do come attend.

    11. The issue is low earning Overseas Pakistanis particularly from Gulf keep their savings accounts in Pakistan to keep their small savings for any rainy days. Being away from home an Overseas Pakistani (OP), does not regularly withdraw money as is done locally in Pakistan to meet family, medical and other expenses. These expenses, OPs families back home meet through remittances received and which remittances the families keep in their own named accounts. An OP himself generally does not need to withdraw “CASH” and that too definitely frequently.

    12. Here I am going to mention about my wife just for easy explanation of the issue otherwise there is no remotest interest in raising her personal issue for any personal relief. My wife has an account with XXX Bank Limited (XBL), Karachi. She opened it approximately 6-8 years back while in Pakistan. She has till today not used her cheque book to withdraw as she need not to living abroad. She occasionally sends a small amount for credit/deposit in this account. Recently when she contacted the Bank for another service, she was told her account stood inactive as she did not “WITHDRAW” during one year and this intimation was sent to her at her Karachi address.


    13. When the matter was recently raised with SBP it told one needs to withdraw within a year otherwise account becomes dormant. According to SBP it has been prescribed to save such account from being misused for money laundering. An economist some two decades back wrote SBP was the agent of businessmen not of ordinary. It has proved beyond any doubt. While I am scribbling this, Rauf Klasra is quoting billions of dollars loan was taken right under the nose of same very SBP on world’s highest interest rate (8 point something), as an act of enmity with the country, leaving lower rates available in the market and the SBP is not disclosing which elite Pakistanis gave that loan (euro bonds). Accounts of والے رکشے ، والے فالودے ، والے پاپڑ were opened right under its nose, having transaction of millions and millions money laundering but the SBP deliberately kept its eyes closed. This huge money laundering was done under the blessings of SBP which is evident from the fact it has not taken action even against a single Manager who opened these fake accounts but doing many water shedding things on this account.

    14. OPs Accounts are saving accounts. They don’t need withdrawals frequently except for when once in 2-3 years they visit Pakistan. Under this rule quoted by UBL, it means my wife must definitely now travel every 10-11 months to Karachi, withdraw a Rs. 5,000 and within next minute re-deposit it, to save her account from becoming inactive. This
    exercise of her once every 10-11 months at present rate is a prescription of minimum Rs. 2 lac travel expense while bank is giving hardly 5% profit from which 20% withholding tax plus zakat is deducted at source.

    15. She is now told to fill-up some Forms, get those attested from Pakistan Embassy or from the nearest XBL Branch. Fortunately Bahrain has both Pakistan Embassy and XBL. Going to Embassy means two days minimum, sitting long hours in crumbling space, face unnecessary objections with hard-tone, pay heavy fees and “Tax”, take two people along who will take leave from their works to sign as witnesses. Plus of course, face what PM Imran Khan recently observed while addressing Ambassadors in Islamabad.

    16. Last week a lady doctor from Canada, in reference to PM Imran Khan’s address to the ambassadors, wrote in DAWN she lived about a thousand miles away from Pakistan Consulate. She needed attestation of documents. It was too hard and expensive for her to travel to Consulate without prior telephone talk fearing she might have to face objections, return back home a thousand miles to go again to face a new objection. So the issue is what would happen to those Overseas Pakistani Account Holders who live thousands miles away from local Pakistan Embassy/XBL to get their Forms attested for re-activation of their accounts.

    17. My wife, suppose, now fills up the Forms, gets those attested on huge fee, humiliation and time waste, sends to XBL to get her account reactivation. But in case she did not go to Pakistan after that, for not withdrawing within a year her account would again be made inactive for her to again repeat ritual of Pakistan Embassy. Thus annually she would spend more than what XBL annually, in net, is paying her any profit on her account.

    18. XBL Head Office confirmed her that her official address for communication was noted in its record as that of Bahrain for future contacts and communications. XBL Head Office despatched her six monthly statement at her Bahrain address. The Manager of the same UBL sent Account Inactivation Warning Intimation at her Pakistan address despite knowing she was not present there to attend to that warning. An Overseas Pakistani is addressed at her Pakistan address is a point to ponder.

    19. Every country in the word desired its citizens to have a habit of savings and these small savings of ordinary are the real strong foundation of an economy as these small “balances” remain stagnant continuously in the accounts. By forcing OP Accountholders to invariably withdraw in a year or face extreme problems, it appears it is desired that these OPs should invariably withdraw and spend so their savings could not help benefit the nation.


    19. Mr. Justice Sardar Iqbal the first Federal Ombudsman said a rule, law or a procedure could be non sense not consistent to the today’s civilized society, hence I am not to see what is 2-lines rule, being an Ombudsman I am see if it suits the society in general. He did not believe on just lip service. For example the Establishment of Ombudsman Ordinance read Ministry of Defence and Foreign Affairs were out of his ambit. He refused and provided relief to thousands and thousands aggrieved including this old man through the hands of PIA and Embassy. Can today Ombudsman Office entertain a complaint against PIA? Of course not, not at all. Most respectfully this conscientious citizen prays as under:

    a. As around 1990 the then Ombudsman on the “suggestion” of this old man did not refuse petition on the objection of being a “Suggestion” rather ordered opening of 24-hours banking booths inside all departure lounges,

    b. In furtherance of a similar complaint as an extension of the above Order, the Federal Ombudsman directed SBP to change relevant Foreign Exchange Rules(or Regulations) enhancing the limit of carrying cash on departure and some other changes in non-resident accounts rules to make the rule rationale.

    Taking a similar view of this non sense rule, in the larger interest both of Overseas Pakistanis and the country at larger, the Federal Ombudsman may direct the Regulator to make changes in the above of no-sense rules;
    a. Requiring OP Accountholder approx. every eleven months to come to Pakistan to withdraw
    b. almost every eleven months performing ritual to visit nearest Pakistani bank or Embassy travelling a thousand miles, spend huge and minimum 2-days
    affecting maintaining accounts of OPs by eliminating non sense like, for example, invariable annual withdrawals, inactivation of accounts, addressing accountholders at their Pakistani addresses etc.
    c. The truth is that the more in the name of Overseas Pakistanis the nation is fooled, the vested interests take advantage like in the name of welfare of OPs, creation of new and new high perk posts like Grievance Commissioner for Overseas Pakistanis, Overseas Pakistanis Commissioner, Punjab Overseas Pakistanis Commission and Sialkot Overseas this and that practically only meant to create new jobs for dear ones, the more problems for Overseas Pakistanis are created, in practical terms. For one example HBL Karachi for 30 years regularly sent me my cheque book to Bahrain by registered airmail. Earlier saving account cheque books used to be of 10 leaves only, as such exhausted quickly for using share applications or installments of plots etc. Two years back when I asked for new cheque book, under the banner of more facilities for Overseas Pakistanis, the HBL refused on the ground the cheque books are not sent abroad and I had to waste my time both with the toothless banking mohtasib and the so called regulator SBP.
    d) OP accountholders be addressed all communications at their address abroad where they were present to attend to such communications.

    With regards,
    Yours respectfully,

    Muhammad Javed
    i. This old lost an eye in operation hence scribbles this without any pre or post drafting but just playing directly with keyboard. Hence inconsistency, repeatation, broken sentences and errors expected for which my apologies.

    ii. The issue raised does not relate to UBL but since rules/procedures about above of no sense are framed by the Regulator, hence this issue is being raised before the Federal Ombudsman and not before the banking mohtasib raising of such issue before him, however, in itself is a step of no self sense.

    iii. Federal Ombudsman claims and often repeats like, for example, last month Multan adviser to Ombudsman loudly claimed in open kutchery that the ombudsman provided “Free and at YOUR door step” justice. I may respectfully put here that I would not be able to attend to
    any hearing if a prescription costing me approx. 2 lac (leave alone Covid situation) is sent to me to attend the Hearing in ombudsman office to collect my share of “Free at YOUR door step justice”.

    iv. Having 55 plus years rich experience, this old man knows well that mention of 1980s decided ombudsman cases might not be that necessary, but this old, based on recent years experience added it all to refresh what was the attitude of the ombudsman office then towards the commoners in 1980s.

    v. If it is not asking too much, this old man most respectfully begs to pray that in case the Honourable Ombudsman is kind in accepting this issue for processing, same may kindly not be assigned to any Reyaz Memons type individuals but be given to someone who had worked in this Secretariat during 1983 to 1992 like one Mr. Jawed Ahmed, Legal Consultant.

    cc: Most Honourable Mr. S. M Zafar – Sir, you wrote me years back that my so much confidence on the Federal Ombudsman was my contribution towards strengthening the ombudsman system in Pakistan. Sir, today I have almost no confidence. In 1983-84 through your columns you diagnosed that no system could deliver unless people themselves started recognizing and struggling for their own rights. As such still I keep continue with the Ombudsman despite knowing I would

    get nothing. I give you an example. 2007 my daughter after graduation in search of a job, approached the Federal Ombudsman. Islamabad
    Board was delaying her mark sheets. In a hearing in AUGUST the Board told the Ombudsman that the documents had already been despatched “AT HER GIVEN ADDRESS”. The Ombudsman did not care to check the child was crying, let me get it confirmed from her. The Ombudsman issued his Finding showing his achievement that due to
    his office intervention the complainant received relief. Thus the ombudsman got added one fake achievement in the number of reliefs distributed by him in the year. You wrote me a letter that you were writing to the Ombudsman. My daughter then wrote to the Chief Justice. After six months in FEBRUARY next year one fine morning some Drone from Islamabad dropped the marks sheets in a school in Bahrain in which my daughter had never even once entered. I collected those mark sheets then from the school on call which the Ombudsman Findings read Despatced at her address. The ombudsman system is not strengthening but, in practice, on extreme decline. Asif Ali Zardari as President expressed his concerned on Federal Ombudsman becoming infective. Yet, sir since this old has no other alternate, he uses this Forum in vain hope of justice, as you in 1983 prescribed people to wake up and struggle, this old from heart is acting on that.

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