Daily The Business

Atif Bajwa appointed Bank of Punjab new president

Will he be able to pass the F&T of SBP?

M Jahangir Hayat

LAHORE: The Punjab government has announced appointment of Atif Bajwa as the president of the Bank of Punjab, Daily The Business has learnt.
The Punjab government in its 23rd provincial cabinet discussed 19-point agenda on Tuesday (today).
The appointment of president of the Bank of Punjab (BoP) and upgradation of different posts were decided in the meeting on the recommendations of the committee headed by the additional chief secretary.
Bajwa has previously been associated with Bank AlFalah, MCB Bank and Soneri Bank as well as RBS and CitiBank.
The appointment of Atif Bajwa will be confirmed once the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) approves his Fit and Proper Test (F&P).
Although Atif Bajwa is known as one of the seasoned and professional bankers in the banking industry, he must have to pass SBP F&T for the conformation of his post as BoP president.
Will he be able to pass the F&T of SBP? The question has become of immense importance for earlier presidents appointed for the post have failed to pass the F&T and were shown the door.
Lastly, Bank of Punjab (BOP) had been informed that the SBP rejected Fit and Proper Test (FPT) Assessment of Syed Muhammad
Talib Rizvi, for his proposed appointment as President/ CEO of BOP, as he lacks diversified experience and skill set required for this position, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) stated in a notification.

The Punjab cabinet would look for another appropriate candidate for the appointment of the president of the bank.

Considering the urgency of the matter, the SBP had advised BoP to entrust acting charge of the office of CEO to a key executive of the bank, who meets the FPT requirements for this position, the SBP notification said.

The bank was also advised to submit FPT documents of a suitable person meeting the prescribed FPT criteria and other applicable requirements for the position of president/CEO of BOP, for SBP clearance.

The Punjab cabinet had approved the appointment of Mr Syed Mohammad Talib Rizvi as president/chief executive officer (CEO) of the Bank of Punjab.

Rizvi was said to have got a sound reputation as a thorough banking professional, who is young, energetic and has a respectable family background.

He had 23 years of experience in the banking sector and remained retail & commercial head/group head of large scale banks like Bank Alfalah and Habib Metropolitan Bank for around 12 years.
He became the youngest retail & commercial head (in his mid-thirties) of the banking industry.

He held double master’s degrees, including an MBA. Further, he got foreign trainings from business schools of various prestigious Institutions like Insead, Stanford, IFC and others.

He was working as group executive at Habib Metropolitan Bank. He has a vast experience of handling asset and liability relationships for both multinationals and government entities, and has been actively involved in structuring syndicated and stand-alone financing for clients.

He was the one to have introduced and executed the concept of branchless banking at Bank Alfalah, where he had complete management, operational and administrative charge of three regions, six areas, and 119 full-fledged branches of the bank.
However, with the appointment of Atif Bajwa as BoP head same question has again surfaced whether or not Bajwa, who is said to have been jobless for quite a considerable time, is cleared in the F&P test by the SBP.

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