Govt to establish commission to digitise economy

IT minister says commission, under Digital National Framework, will be chaired by PM Sharif

Zafar Bhutta May 18, 2024
photo: afp


The government has decided to establish a commission to digitise the national economy under the Digital National Framework, with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to chair the commission.

Minister of State for IT and Telecommunication, Shaza Fatima, made this announcement at an event organised by Huawei Technologies at its head office in Islamabad to commemorate World Telecom Day.

She explained that the government aims to legislate for national digitisation, recognising the need for automation to enhance transparency and infrastructure development in light of a paradigm shift.

Khawaja further stated that the mobile manufacturing and exports policy is in its final stages to bolster the country’s exports. Currently, mobile phone exports stand at around 0.2 million units, which is insufficient and requires a significant increase.

The minister underscored the government’s commitment to digital transformation, affirming every citizen’s right to quality Internet and broadband facilities. Steps are being taken to provide telecom services in both urban and rural areas, including initiatives such as the National Fiberisation Policy to extend Internet access to every home and the Smartphone for All Policy to ensure smartphone access for every individual.

Fatima highlighted government initiatives to boost the ICT sector, including awarding 85 projects worth Rs80 billion to expand internet access in underserved areas through the Universal Service Fund (USF). She stressed the government’s aim to bridge the digital divide between rural and urban areas.

Regarding mobile phone exports, Fatima expressed the government’s commitment to maximising exports under the Mobile Manufacturing and Export Policy, acknowledging the telecom industry’s vital role in the country’s economy.

A delegation from the ministry, including Chief Coordinator Baber Sheikh and Coordinator Sania Zaidi, along with Huawei management attended the event.

World Telecom Day, celebrated annually, highlights the transformative power of digital innovation in advancing sustainable development and prosperity for all. Fatima commended Huawei’s commitment to building a fully connected, intelligent world, reiterating the Pakistani government’s support for Huawei in accelerating digitalisation efforts.

She underscored Pakistan’s immense potential in the ICT space and highlighted the importance of communication and connectivity in our increasingly digital world.


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