Pakistan Has Not Yet Developed For 5G Infrastructure – Head of GSMA Asia-Pacific Said

Julian Gorman, Head of GSMA Asia-Pacific, said Pakistan Needs Huge Investments To Establish 5G Infrastructure

Mr. Gorman expressed his concern to the media that the situation around the Digital Pakistan program had not altered significantly since he visited Pakistan 3 years ago, making Pakistan not ready for the deployment of 5G infrastructure.

He alluded to the GSMA intelligence assessment noting the possibility for Pakistani officials to expedite the Digital Pakistan project and establish a solid platform for the deployment of 5G infrastructure in the nation.

“This can only be accomplished by adopting critical reforms using the Whole-of-Government Approach (WGA) to improve the financial health of the broader telecom industry and the capacity of industry actors to invest and innovate,” he said.

Mr. Gorman stated, “The magnitude of investment required to construct infrastructure for the launch of 5G infrastructure is substantial, and at the current rate of investment it will take a very long time, perhaps years, for Pakistan to reach that level.”

According to him, the greatest obstacle for Pakistan’s IT and telecommunications sector at the moment is that it cannot attract investment.

Mr. Gorman stated that the IT sector in Pakistan was facing financial pressures due to the fact that the cost of doing business was increasing daily, while returns on investment and opportunities for company development were declining.

He stated that the benefits of 5G were not confined to mobile phone users, but were more of an enabler for changing the sector into a highly digitized industry. However, he asserted that Pakistan was not yet ready to deploy 5G.

In addition to a competitive environment, the head of GSMA stated that Pakistan needs clear and implementable regulations so that the entire financial system was transparent in order to modernize its IT and telecom industries.

Mr. Gorman stated that Pakistan should modify certain policies, such as delinking government payments from US dollars, especially in light of the currency’s 30 percent devaluation.

“The tariffs and earnings are expressed in rupees, while payments to the government are made in dollars,” he added, adding that the currency devaluation had increased the industry’s financial burden.

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