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ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) on Wednesday notified two regulatory frameworks for initial public offerings (IPOs).

The Public Offering Regulations 2017 and Public Offering (Regulated Securities Activities Licensing) Regulations 2017 aim to promote ease of doing business and streamlining the entire public offering process for debt and equity securities.

At the same time, the Central Depository Com­pany (CDC) with the support of banking system has introduced Centralised E-IPO system (CES), allowing retail investors to file the application for subs­cription of shares electronically — using the internet, mobile phones or ATMs.

IPO is the first time allocation of newly issued stocks or shares to the public. Under the new regulations, the issuer has also been allowed determination of strike price through 100pc book building and the bidders would be initially allotted 75pc shares.

The public subscription will be held for the remaining 25pc shares and in case of undersubscription of retail portion, the same will be allotted to successful bidders on pro rata basis.

In order to promote the debt market, SECP’s processing fees in case of issuance of debt securities has been reduced by 50pc.

In order to make availability of funds raised through the IPO to the issuer at the earliest, time to conclude the process has been reduced from 30 days to 10 days.

Published in Dawn, May 4th, 2017