The inaugural session of KESC’s “Thought Leadership Forum”, was organized on the day of 99th anniversary of our company, i.e. on September 13, 2012, at DHA Golf Club, Karachi. Dean & Director of IBA Karachi, Dr. Ishrat Husain’s keynote address on “The Impact of Privatization on Sustainable Development” was the main highlight of the event. Some 180 corporate executives and KESC managers attended the session.
Dr. Ishrat spoke in his usual mild-mannered tone, listing each criticism of privatization from economic populists before comprehensively dismantling it, using data and facts with incredible ease. He touched briefly on the theoretical arguments in favour of privatization before laying out in detail how – in the few cases where it had been tried in Pakistan – it had produced a roaring success. He presented three cases to support his argument: banking sector, telecommunications sector, and the power sector. In each, he laid out the reasons why it had been a success, quoting visible and quantifiable facts.
He specifically highlighted the key advantages of privatization as experienced in case of PTCL, Banks & KESC and how consumer experience has improved as a result of progressive approached adopted by these companies. He also talked about Pakistan Steel Mill as an example how public sector control has adversely impacted its performance.
As for the energy sector, Husain was appreciative of KESC’s progressive approach. He particularly praised the management’s resolve and commitment. He was of the view that KESC is benefiting as processes are being put in place and systems are replacing the personality driven culture.
Giving Welcome Key Note at the event Mr. Ghufran Atta Khan – Chief Engagement Officer said, ” We have always seen our role as going beyond that of just supplying electricity to over 20 million people of Karachi and have consciously developed a 360 degree value creation model that guides us in defining our role in much broader terms and that puts greater focus on building stronger ties with our key stakeholders, ensuring regular, open and transparent two way communication, something that was neglected completely during the pre-privatization era “.
Also addressing the occasion CEO , Mr. Tabish Gauhar said, “This forum is our humble contribution towards the people of Karachi and the economy of this country as a whole”. He emphasized the need for a competent, autonomous, pragmatic and visionary regulator for the privatization process to be fruitful. He explained how challenging it has been for KESC to strike a balance while dealing with its diverse stakeholder universe. He strongly advocated for customer centricity for public service organizations and elaborated how differentiation can be used effectively in devising service strategies for various customer segments, quoting KESC’s experience where customers vary largely in their usage and payment behaviors.