Press Release

JCR-VIS reaffirms ratings of National Bank of Pakistan Limited at AAA /A-1+
 

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Karachi, July 02, 2007: During the current rating review, JCR-VIS Credit Rating Co Limited (JCR-VIS) has given due consideration to the sustainability observed in various indicators over the past few years which reflect the significance of the National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) to the local economy. NBP is the largest commercial bank in Pakistan in terms of its depositors’ base as well as its lending operations, with a strong overall presence in the latter segment including corporate, SME, micro, agriculture and consumer financing. It is the only public sector bank in the country and has been able to leverage the advantage to profitably tap certain avenues in both local and foreign markets inclusive of running the largest treasury operations locally. The organization has been able to strategically manage and build on its competitive advantages which has translated into the strong and well managed improvement in profitability trend observed over the last few years, a substantial balance sheet footing of Rs. 635 billion of sound asset quality, and strong liquidity and capitalization levels. Globally also, the bank is strengthening its reach and has been actively constructing a branch network in recent years with a focus on South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East, as well as China.

JCR-VIS had earlier assigned two ratings to NBP. The stand-alone rating of ‘AA+/A-1+’ (Double A Plus / A One Plus) reflected the intrinsic strength of the bank while the credit ratings of ‘AAA/A-1+’ (Triple A / A-One Plus) were based on the sovereign guarantee on the bank’s deposits extended under the Banks Nationalization Act, 1974. In consideration of the factors mentioned above, we are of the opinion that NBP now merits a medium to long-term rating of AAA on a stand-alone basis as well, negating the need for dual ratings. The credit ratings of AAA/A-1+ (Triple A / A-One Plus) have been re-affirmed based on the intrinsic strength of the bank with a ‘Stable’ outlook on the medium to long-term ratings. However, it should be noted that the sovereign guarantee on deposits continues to be in place.

For further information on this rating announcement, please contact Mr. Safdar Kazi (safdar@jcrvis.com.pk) or Mr. Saad Ahmed Madani (saad@jcrvis.com.pk) at 5311861 or fax to 5311873.



Faheem Ahmad
President & CEO

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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