October 30, 2020

Over 190 offshore companies registered in Pakistan since 1963

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pakistan-flag-01-320x1806From DAWN

ISLAMABAD: More than 192 offshore companies have been registered in since 1963 to do businesses in different sectors, with power generation being their latest preference.

Data compiled by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan () show that a majority of the companies have been registered in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.

The companies include prominent telecommunication companies, oil and gas exploration firms and financial institutions such as the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, which was registered in the name of Yousef H. Abedi. Its country of origin was .

According to the SECP, the oldest offshore company registered in Pakistan is the P&O Containers Pakistan. It was registered in the Karachi office of the Corporate Law Authority () on April 9, 1963.

The SECP was established in 1997 as successor to the CLA.

Another company, Morgah Valley Limited, dealing in poultry business, was registered in the Islamabad office of the CLA in 1971. Its country of origin was The Netherlands Antilles.

In 1973, an individual, Sarwar Begum, got an offshore company registered in the CLA’s Karachi office. The name of the import/export company was Haji Khuda Bux Amir Umer (Private) Limited and its country of origin was Panama.

The highest number of offshore companies registered in Pakistan — 79 in all — has origins in The Netherlands Antilles and 27 in The Netherlands.

The Netherlands Antilles is a former country which consisted of several island territories located in the Caribbean Sea. It used to be a colony of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. But this country was dissolved in 2010 as each island chose its own future course.

But one offshore company — ZXY International (Pvt) Ltd dealing in garments and showing its origin in The Netherlands Antilles — was registered in the SECP’s Lahore office on May 27, 2014.

Fifty-one of the offshore companies have origin in Panama, 27 in Hong Kong, five in Iceland and three in Cayman Islands.

Most of the firms have been registered in Pakistan in the name of foreigners or companies. As per the data compiled by the SECP, only five offshore companies were registered in Pakistan in 2015 — four in power generation sector and the fifth dealing in import/export of electronic goods.

Data of most of the offshore companies are incomplete as the companies are not subjected to income tax laws of Pakistan.

For more on this story go to: http://www.dawn.com/news/1266256/over-190-offshore-companies-registered-in-pakistan-since-1963

IMAGE: www.india.com

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