Incorporated as a public limited (Unlisted) company in 1993, Central Depository Company of Pakistan Limited (CDC) is the only depository in Pakistan. The Company started operations in September 1997. CDC is the sole entity handling the electronic (paperless) settlement of transactions carried out at all three stock exchanges of the country. Through efficient functioning of CDC, approximately 99% of the market settlement is in book entry form.
CDC was primarily established to operate the Central Depository System (CDS) for equity, debt and other financial instruments that are traded in the Pakistani Capital Market. However, with the passage of time and development of Pakistan’s Capital Market, it now also provides services that are beyond the traditional depository services. CDS is an electronic book entry system used to record and maintain securities and their transfer’s registration. The system changes the ownership of securities without any physical movement or endorsement of certificates and execution of transfer instruments.
CDC provides depository services to a wide range of Capital Market participants which includes Brokers, Asset Management Companies, Banks (including Custodian Banks) and general retail investors. It also serves to link up the Issuers and Registrars of securities and the market for the purpose of executing corporate actions like disbursement of corporate benefits and carrying out mergers and splits.
The aim of CDC is to operate as a central securities depository on behalf of the financial services industry so as to contribute to the country's ability to support an effective capital market system which will attract institutional and retail level investors from Pakistan and abroad. CDC is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP). CDC has branches in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.
Taking another step towards capital market development, CDC has diversified its operations in the following services:
Launched in 1999, Investor Account Services (IAS) allows retail investors to open and maintain securities’ accounts directly with CDC.
Trustee and Custodial Services (T&C) were introduced in 2002 and enlists Open-end and Closed end Mutual Funds and Voluntary Pension Schemes.
Launched in 2008, Share Registrar Services (SRS) provides issuing companies state-of-the-art facilities of registrar and transfer agent services, including registration and verification of shares and records and customer dealing on behalf of issuer companies.