The government has dropped Telephone Industry of Pakistan (TIP) from the privatization list and is considering establishing mobile phone handsets plant in collaboration with the private sector for its revival.
This was revealed by Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication (MoITT) Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui while briefing media on one-year achievements here on Wednesday.
Soon the Payment Gateway Issue Will be Resolved in Pakistan
The minister said that the government has formally dropped TIP from the privatization list. He said that talks are underway with a different Chinese company for establishing a mobile handset manufacturing plant.
The minister said that IT & IT-enabled Services (ITeS) export remittances have surged to $900 million in 2018-19 compared to $800 million in previous, however, the actual figure of IT & ITeS exports are $ 4.1 billion. Due to lack of online payment gateway the country is not receiving the IT sector related benefits to the full. The Minister further said that talks in this regard are underway with 5-6 players and would be finalized soon.
A meeting was recently held with Team of Financial Transactions Control Systems (FTCS) of Sweden where matters related to payment gateway solutions in Pakistan were discussed.
The minister also said that a meeting has been held with Etisalat for the $800 million outstanding amount on account of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) privatization.
IT Minister said that the previous government had not informed mobile companies with respect to the renewal of cellular mobile on time. The matter is in the court and would be resolved soon, he added.
He further said that teledensity has been increased to 75-80 percent and around 160 million people are benefiting from mobile phones in the country in one or other shape. He further said that projects have been launched to provide voice & broadband services in areas of North / South Waziristan and far-flung areas of Balochistan.
The Minister also announced to establish IT Regulatory Authority on the pattern of PMDC to regulate IT-related education and introduce a standard for IT graduates and certificates holders. Around 25000 IT graduates complete their education every year in the country, however, only 5000-6000 graduates get jobs due to gap of in industry and academia linkages.
Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui announced to establish a special economic zone for technological purposes in Islamabad.
The minister said that an international information technology exhibition would be held next month in Karachi where 300-500 international IT experts would participate. The event would give an opportunity to young IT students to showcase their talent and create job opportunities.
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