ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Monday inaugurated the Pakistan Stock Exchange, saying on the occasion that the exchange's launch was a historic day for Pakistan, one that could be the start of a new era.

A new integrated national bourse, the Pakistan Stock Exchange began functioning Monday, replacing the stock markets of Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad as all three exchanges have now been formally inducted into the unified PSX.

Prior to the formal launch today, the Karachi Stock Exchange held a two-day pre-production mock trading session for all certificate holders of the three bourses on Saturday and Sunday.

The integration is expected to help reduce market fragmentation and create a strong case for attracting strategic partnerships necessary for providing technological expertise and assistance.

“I think Pakistan has a great future and I have great faith but we still have to go a long way,” said Dar during his address at the ceremony.

He said a number of countries had shown interest for investment in Pakistan in different fields, Radio Pakistan reported.

The finance minister said a stock exchange can play a major role in the development of an economy, and assured that his ministry will continue to offer support and assistance.

Dar said the PML-N government has put in untiring efforts focusing on “the four Es – economy, extremism, energy, and education.”

Today, he said, the country was performing well on all metrics, with the economy now showing signs of consolidation.

“Now the predictions are that Pakistan will take off and the PSX will play a critical role in this process.”

The integration of the three exchanges has completed the second phase of the Stock Exchanges Demutualisation and Integration Act 2012, passed by a joint session of parliament.

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