Women in Finance

Women in Finance - Finance Professionals of Pakistan

Entry of women in finance profession witnessed a period of unprecedented increase in the financial sector of Pakistan during the past few years. The sector has evolved as one of the best in the region. The sector offers a host of opportunities for women in Pakistan starting from initial steps into the corporate world to establishing their own consultancy firms.

Women in Finance - Notable Names

Some of the females that have led the financial sector and related institutions:

  1. Dr. Shamshad Akhtar - She served as the 14th Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, the first woman to assume this position. She is a Pakistani development economist, diplomat and intellectual who served as the caretaker Finance Minister of Pakistan. 
  2. Sima KamilSima Kamil is a Pakistani banker. In May 2017 she became the president and chief executive of United Bank Limited, the first woman to lead a major Pakistani bank. She has been appointed as Deputy Governor (DG) State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) in August 2020.
  3. Akram Khatoon - A prominent banker, famous as first famous female banker of Pakistan. Akram Khatoon served at various positions the highest being the President of First Woman Bank Limited.
  4. Roshaneh Zafar - She founded the first specialized microfinance organization in Pakistan, the Kashf Foundation in 1996, and serves as its Managing Director. Prior to establishing the foundation, she worked with the World Bank in Islamabad for several years

Women in Finance - Finance and Accounts

From the global meltdown of the last decade, it seems by comparison, the local Pakistani banks have been on a more sound footing than the US or EU banks.

In the services industry many women opt for MBA, CA, CFA, ACMA, ACCA and similar professional qualifications. Most of these high caliber professionals are immediately absorbed in the corporate set-ups while some choose to establish private practices as consultants. The field being of a highly sensitive nature is very time consuming should it be opted for as a profession. As such independent professionals are not as many as needed.

Although the number of females graduating or qualifying as finance professionals is quite high in the international markets, the number is no less in the local market. However, the ratio of women making to the top slots remains much lower than the potential. At times this is due to the demands on women with respect to the home-life balance. 

Women in Finance - In Educational Institutions for Finance

There are more reputable educational institutions imparting education in the various disciplines of this segment than any other. The most prestigious ones include:

  • Institute of Business Administration (IBA)
  • Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS)
  • Institute for Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP)
  • Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of Pakistan (ICMAP)
  • College of Business Management (CBM)

and many many more...

Women in Finance - Senior Positions in FIs

While this segment is more appropriate for Careers and Jobs page of our website, some of the remarkable finance professionals in the corporate world should also be mentioned here.

Pakistan's Central Bank - the State Bank of Pakistan - had a female governor till December 2008. She was the 14th Governor of the State Bank and the first woman to have the honor of this prestigious position.  She was later the Finance Minister in the Caretaker set-up prior to the General Elections. 

A number of Asset Management companies have female Chief Executives as well as an Investment Company and a Leasing Company.

A dedicated Commercial Bank for women was established in Pakistan in the early '90s, that is essentially headed by a female due to the niche that it caters to.

In multi-national companies and well reputed corporate entities women are engaged as finance professionals at many tiers going up to senior levels. In insurance companies there are female actuaries that outperform even the best international talents in the field.

Women by nature being risk averse have a better corporate governance-oriented approach. As we add the profiles of these dynamic ladies, you will see how far the women of Pakistan have made their mark in this segment.

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