ICCI underlines IT sector’s growth potential

Chamber officials say industry can create jobs, promote exports and increase tax revenue


Our Correspondent December 27, 2016
PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: A delegation of Pakistan Computer Association (PCA), led by its Chairman Munawar Iqbal, visited Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) and called upon the government to focus on the development of the IT industry, which has the potential to stimulate economic growth and promote exports.

Speaking on the occasion, Iqbal said that the current tax regime was not supportive of the IT sector businesses and stressed that the government should reform tax policies to facilitate this sector.

He said that the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) should reduce high tax rates on the IT sector to pave the way for its fast growth.

According to Iqbal if the government cooperates, the IT industry has the potential to create plenty of new jobs, promote exports and increase tax revenue of the country.

A level-playing field should be provided to the IT sector businessmen that will help them to unleash the untapped potential of this industry, said Iqbal adding that the government should establish a fund to promote research and development activities to boost the industry.

ICCI President Khalid Iqbal Malik said that the IT industry has the potential to project Pakistan at a global level by promoting IT exports and the government should give priority attention to resolving its key problems.

He said that the special subsidies and export incentives have proved instrumental in stimulating the growth of IT sector worldwide with very positive spill-over effects on economic growth and the government should seriously consider extending similar support to the IT industry in Pakistan.

“With better focus on the IT industry, India is earning billions of dollars through IT exports while Pakistan’s IT exports are still far less than its actual potential,” said the ICCI president.

He said that the government should pay close attention to removing hurdles in growth. Malik was of the view that if supported by the government, the IT industry could emerge as a major source of employment and driver of economic growth in the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 27th, 2016.

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