By SHIRLEY MAULUDU
THE City Pharmacy Limited (CPL)Group has halted the trading of its shares on the Port Moresby Stock Exchange (POMSoX) following the fire which destroyed its head office and warehouse in Port Moresby.
Managing director Joe Barberis said yesterday that the company needed time to assess the damage to its business operation caused by the fire on Sunday night.
“Today (yesterday), we asked the POM Stock Exchange to freeze our stock just for the time being to avoid speculation,” Barberis said.
“It just gives us a period of time to understand what had happened. Then we are able to inform our market and all of our shareholders and trading should resume as normal in a week or two.
“It is too early to determine what the implications are.
“At the moment, our stores are trading and that’s the most important thing.
“We have stock our customers are able to come in and buy. In terms of financials, we have the cash coming in.”
POMSoX in a market release yesterday confirmed that CPL had halted trading on its shares for two weeks while it assessed the damage to its business operations.
Barberis acknowledged the support by the business community which included “our suppliers, landlords and many of our partners like the banks”.
“(They) have been very sympathetic and are offering us assistance to get back to normal trading as quickly as we can.”
Group chairman Mahesh Patel said the company staff “are intact”.
“Nobody got hurt so that was quite positive,” he said.
“We are trying to relocate them to several locations we’ve got.”