USC Given Rs 5 Bln Credit To Cater Working Capital Needs

USC given Rs 5 bln credit to cater working capital needs

The Utility Stores Corporation (USC) has been provided credit of Rs 5 billion by National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) to cater to its working capital needs and streamline its functioning across the country, Corporation's Chairman Zulqarnain Ali Khan said Wednesday

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 17th Apr, 2019 ) :The Utility Stores Corporation (USC) has been provided credit of Rs 5 billion by National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) to cater to its working capital needs and streamline its functioning across the country, Corporation's Chairman Zulqarnain Ali Khan said Wednesday.

Addressing a news conference here, Khan said that the amount was expected to be released within a couple of days, which would be utilized for clearing the outstanding dues to ensure smooth supply of products to all 4500 USC outlets across the country.

He was of the view that the government had already provided Rs 2 billion to USC for Ramzan Relief Package, which would be functional from May 2, however added that this relief could not reach to the consumers until the capital needs for streamlining the whole USC chain were not fulfilled.

He said, in addition to Rs 5 billion NBP credit, the USC had also demanded further Rs 3 billion, so that the corporation might have R 10 billion with it to run its business smoothly.

He was of the view that the panic witnessed in USCs was not due to the incumbent government, rather this was created due to outstanding balances of last governments.

He was of the view that USC needed Rs 15 billion to make sure that every USC store had all products available.

He said that the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet had also set up an Executive Body, to be chaired by the Federal Minister for Railways, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed to monitor USC operations to put it on track.

He said that USC top management would be giving briefing to the committee on daily basis about the progress to make sure that every store had sufficient stuff available.

The Chairman said that there was dire need to help the organization to stand on its own feet and meet its operational expenditures at its own, adding that he had submitted a business plan to the government, and if implemented, the USC would be put back on trace within eight to ten months.

The Chairman said that Pakistan was having $150 billion consumer market, with consumption of 70-75 percent local products and 25-30 percent imported product, which makes around $40 billon imports.

He said that if local industry was developed, it could capture around $20 billion market and reduce dependence on imports, help create employment opportunities, and resultantly bolster economic development of the country.

He said that currently, the USC was having less than one percent share in consumer market of Pakistan, and if enhanced up to 10 percent, it would help take its sales up to around $7.5 billion.

However, he added that this could be achieved by introducing modern technologies through development of IT infrastructure, ecommerce, modernizing warehouses and stores of the corporation.

He said that if international stores working in Pakistan were successful, why not USC.

To a question, he said that the operational cost of USC was around 600 million, which included salaries of Rs 400 to Rs 450 million to its 14000 employees across the country.

He urged employees of USC not to go on strike, encouraging them to facilitate people during the holy month of Ramzan.

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