ISLAMABAD: Feb 23, 2017
A seminar was arranged by Pakistan Stone Development Company and State Bank of Pakistan on access to finance in the marble and granite sector at PASDEC head office. The seminar was attended by the representative of State Bank of Pakistan, leading commercial banks, All Pakistan Marble Mining and Industries Association, Frontier Mine Owners Association and Buner and Chitral Marble Associations.

Mr. Imran Ahmed Additional Director SBP informed the participants about the State Bank Refinancing scheme for SME development and encouraged the banker to extend credit facility in the marble and granite sector as the sector carries huge developmental potential. He urged the commercial banks to develop products for marble and granite sector with respect to its dynamics and assured that State Bank will provide all necessary support to the sector in taping its real potential.

While speaking to the audiences the CEO PASDEC Mr. Zahid Maqsood Sheikh further highlighted the potential of sector and informed that country has over 300 billion tons of reserves. More than 4000 SME are working in the sector which lack support from the financial institutions.
He further highlighted that lack of access to finance is one of the major reason that the sector is still underdeveloped and failed to tap its real potential causing huge wastage of natural resources of the country. He emphasized the need that the banks should play their active role in uplifting the sector and assured complete support to the banks and the industry in developing viable business models and products. He also urged the need in accessing value of marble and granite leases and acceptance as collateral for extending credit facility to the sector.

Chairman APMIA, Stack holder from Buner & Chitral and representative of Frontier Mine Owners Association stressed the need that Banks should accept leases of marble and granite as collateral and facilitation of over draft to the industry with minimum possible guarantee. They demanded that since the sector is underdeveloped the state bank should take the leading role in developing a policy frame work with certain guideline and pass on target to the commercial bank for extending mandatory credit facility in the marble and granite sector.

Representatives of all the commercial bank appreciated the effort of PASDEC and State Bank for bringing them to a platform where they had the opportunity to understand the real potential of marble and granite sector and assured that they will develop suitable products for the sector in collaboration with stake holders.