United Bank Limited to provide $14.3 million trade facilities to Mobilink

ISLAMABAD (December 23 2002) : Mobilink has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with United Bank Limited to obtain structured trade facilities worth $ 14.3 million from the bank.

This facility, along with a Rs 210 million short-term loan, will be utilised as part of Mobilink's expansion plans for the year 2003.

The signing ceremony, held on December 19, 2002, was led by Hamesh Khan, EVP and Regional Corporate Head of United Bank Limited, and Hamid Farooq, Chief Financial Officer of Mobilink, and was attended by Adnan Rashid, Relationship Manager, United Bank, Aqueela Mumtaz, Head of Treasury, Mobilink, and other participants from both sides.

Hamid Farooq said Mobilink has aggressive plans for 2003 to ensure its place as market leader in mobile communication in Pakistan. He said that UBL's transaction is the first in a series of transactions which the company intends to undertake in 2003 for infrastructure acquisition. The facility agreement will be concluded in January, 2003, when Mobilink's President and CEO, Al Barry, and UBL's President, Amar Zafar Khan, will put their signatures on the facility document to seal the transaction.

Hamid said: “We are putting together an expansion plan of $ 100 million for the year 2003, which will give us a substantial switching and radio capacity, thereby enabling us to bring enhanced and superior cellular services to our customers.”

He said that Pakistan's cellular market is teeming with opportunities for rapid growth and in such times it is important that business associates like United Bank act like business partners, and continue to show confidence in this sector through sustained financing allowing the infrastructure acquisition process to grow undeterred.

This is one of the largest transactions that United Bank has undertaken since its privatisation.

Hamesh Khan said that United Bank is realigning its policies to bring them in line with the requirements of the new shareholders.

The Bank is more than ever ready to take a lead role in developing the economy of the country by leveraging its large balance sheet by putting together a measured yet assertive credit portfolio.

Realising the importance of regional presence in the new paradigm, the Bank has recently reorganised itself making its Corporate Banking Group North Region, a distinct focus unit.

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