Pakistan stocks take a beating on controversy over ISI chief appointment


Shares at the Pakistan Stock Exchange ended the day in the red on Wednesday as investors were worried over the controversy surrounding the appointment of the Inter-Services Intelligence chief.

The benchmark KSE-100 index shed 661.3 points, or 1.51 per cent, to close at 43,221.78 points.

Topline Securities CEO Mohammad Sohail said investors were worried over the controversy surrounding the appointment of the Inter-Services Intelligence chief, Dawn reported.

Ahsan Mehanti from Arif Habib Corporation said stocks fell across the board on investor concerns for global equity sell off and rising inflation amid slump in rupee.

“Uncertainty over outcome of ongoing Pak-IMF talks under EFF (Extended Fund Facility) and economic uncertainty amid surging trade deficit, bond yields played a catalyst role in the bearish close,” he said.

Last week, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) had announced that Lt Gen Nadeem Ahmed Anjum had been appointed the new ISI chief. Lt Gen Faiz Hameed, formerly the ISI Director General, was posted as the Peshawar Corps Commander.

However, despite the passage of days following the ISPR announcements, a notification confirming Lt Gen Anjum’s appointment as the new DG ISI has not been issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, the report said.

The name of the new Director General of the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) will likely be announced tomorrow (Thursday) as Pakistan Prime Minister House has received a summary in this regard, ARY News reported.

According to sources privy to the development, the Prime Minister’s House has received a summary from the Defence Ministry carrying recommendation of three names for the DG ISI.

“Lieutenant General Nadeem Anjum, Lieutenant General Sarfaraz and Lieutenant General Saqib Malik are recommended for the slot in the summary,” they said adding that an announcement in this regard is expected after formal approval from Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, the report said.

Pakistan Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry earlier in the day has said that the process of appointing new ISI chief has begun.

“Consultation between PM and COAS over appointment of new ISI DG has been completed and the process has begun,” he said in his tweet.