Press Release

JCR-VIS assigns A (Single A) rating to Arif Habib Rupali Bank Limited

Karachi, February 2, 2007: JCR-VIS Credit Rating Company Limited has assigned a medium to long term entity rating of A (Single A) with a Stable outlook to Arif Habib Rupali Bank Limited (AHRB). The short-term rating has been assessed at A-2 (A-Two).

Arif Habib Rupali Bank Limited has started operations with a sizeable capital base of Rs. 3b. It is owned to the extent of 89.11% by Arif Habib Securities Limited (AHSL) and the principal sponsors have indicated their intent to merge AHSL with AHRB. JCR-VIS believes that the resource base of the merged entity will be substantially higher, as the equity base of AHSL stood over Rs. 12b as at December 2006. Given the shareholding pattern of the two entities, the merger process is not likely to be hampered by any major impediments and is expected to be completed successfully by mid-year 2007. JCR-VIS has also taken note of the access of the bank to the earning streams from the current investment portfolio of AHSL in diverse business segments, subsequent to the merger. A professional management team is in place, along with quality management information systems which are likely to foster a strong risk management environment in the bank.

Although there has been significant growth in the banking sector in the past few years, the deposit market in Pakistan has become highly competitive in recent periods. JCR-VIS believes that the bank will face significant competition from various small and medium sized banks, that have also been enhancing branch network over the last few years.

For further information on this rating announcement, please contact the undersigned (Ext: 221) or Ms. Sabeen Saleem (Ext: 222) at 5671822/5671833/5680996 or fax to 5681105/5671600.


Information herein was obtained from sources believed to be accurate and reliable; however, VIS Credit Rating Company Limited VIS does not guarantee the accuracy, adequacy or completeness of any information and is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for the results obtained from the use of such information.VIS, the analysts involved in the rating process and members of its rating committee do not have any conflict of interest relating to the rating(s)/ranking(s) mentioned in this report.VIS is not an NRSRO and its credit ratings are not NRSRO credit ratings.VIS is paid a fee for most rating assignments. This rating/ranking is an opinion and is not a recommendation to buy or sell any securities. Copyright 2007 VIS Credit Rating Company Limited. All rights reserved. Contents may be used by news media with credit to VIS.

JCR-VIS Credit Rating Company Limited